Dealing with foundation problems is not something homeowners look forward to. In fact, a lot of them postpone repairs for as long as possible. Since fixing this kind of damage can cost a pretty penny, this type of reaction is completely normal. However, problems with the foundation won’t just go away by themselves. Most likely they will escalate to the point where instead of fixing one thing, you will have to repair your entire home. Fixing the foundation damage as soon as you notice it can not only save you money in the long run but prevent other problems from occurring. How should you know if your foundation is in danger? What are the causes of foundation damage? Is there an all-in-one repair method that could solve your foundation problems? These are the questions we will be addressing in this post.
Signs of Foundation Problems
Although the signs that something is wrong with your foundation are very noticeable, you could easily write them off because someone told you that houses settle and that these issues are quite normal. However, as a responsible homeowner, you should never disregard these red flags. Catching the problem in time before it has escalated can save you a lot of trouble, so keep your eyes open for the following signs:
Whether the cracks are on the inside or the outside of your home, they are a signal that something might be wrong. If they widen over time, you definitely have a foundation problem on your hands.
- Water intrusion
Have you noticed that there is water seepage on the ground floor? Or maybe in your basement or crawl space? If so, there is probably a problem with your home’s structure.
- Bowing walls
If the walls in your basement or your crawl space have begun to bow, they are not strong enough to carry your home. Don’t worry; there is no reason to panic. Although this may seem like your whole house is about to collapse, experienced contractors can easily repair this issue.
Significant gaps around your doors and windows are not normal. They are not a result of changing temperatures, so contact your contractor in the Cincinnati, OH, area and have them take a look.
Cause of Damaged Foundation
If you have a problem with your foundation, you might be wondering what caused it. There are many reasons your foundation could be damaged, so you need to schedule an inspection and find the cause of the problem. Only that way you will be able to prevent it from occurring again in the future.
If your home was built on clay soil, this could be a problem. Expansive soils such as this one are very absorbent, so they can easily soak up the water and expand, even up to 15 times their dry volume. When the soil expands it pushes the foundation, causing it to crack. However, this is not the only problem. When this type of soil dries, it shrinks and leaves your foundation with some wiggle room. Since your foundation has room to move around, it no longer supports the house properly and can easily crack or settle.
Flooding and Water Damage
There are so many ways water can damage your foundation. If there was a storm or a plumbing issue in the neighborhood, the area around your home will start to sink into the soil, which will make the soil expand and push against your foundation. This hydrostatic pressure can damage the foundation. Melting snow can also cause a problem. After a heavy snowfall, there can be excess flooding, which can create problems for your foundation. If you have a plumbing leak, it’s very possible that the leak will end up in your basement or crawl space area. This can be a tricky situation since most homeowners immediately focus on repairing the damage inside their home, which is a lot more visible. When this happens, call the contractors and have them inspect the foundation to determine whether the leak has also caused some foundation problems.
Drought and Dryness
Flooding and drought are the opposite sides of the same coin. They couldn’t be more different, and yet they cause the same damage. Events like excessive evaporation can remove the moisture from the soil, causing soil particles to shrink. When this happens, the soil contracts and leads to foundation cracks and leaks.
Natural disasters can affect your home’s health. For example, flooding from hurricane rain can soak the soil around your home, causing it to push against the foundation. Rainwater can also flood your basement or crawl space. In addition, even the smallest earthquake can severely damage your foundation.
What Is the Best Way to Repair My Foundation?
Having just one repair method that works much better than the others could help you make a decision much faster, but that is not the case. There are numerous ways a foundation can be damaged, and foundation repair methods vary depending on the problems at hand. It is best to call a professional contractor, have them inspect the damage, and determine which solution is the right one for you. They could recommend some of the following options:
Foundation Settlement Solutions – With a foundation pier system, contractors can potentially push your home back into its original position. Depending on the type of foundation, they can use helical piers, push piers, or slab piers.
Foundation Wall Repair – With anchors and beams, contactors can solve the problem of bowing basement or crawl space walls. These support systems can push the walls back into their original position, preventing them from bowing again. They, along with carbon fiber supports, permanently reinforce the walls and protect them from any further cracking or movement.
Floor Support – If you have a problem with sagging floors, a crawl space support system such as the IntelliJack™ system permanently stabilizes and can lift the floors back to their initial positions.
Fixing your foundation should never be a DIY project. Therefore, call professionals in the Cincinnati, OH, area and schedule a free inspection.