Cracks in my Foundation
In order to determine how to repair any foundation cracks or leaks you need to understand what the foundation does for your home. Your house’s foundation sits directly on the ground, adhering it to the soil or rock. There are several different kinds of foundations.
A slab-on-grade foundation is shallow and can be built relatively quickly, a home with this kind of foundation does not have a basement. It moves with any shifting of the soil from frost, excessive rain or roots.
A pier and beam foundation consists of a concrete footing and a pier which supports beams and floor joists. There is usually only a crawl space underneath the home built on this type of foundation.
Basements are generally included in homes built in climates where there are likely to be shifts caused by freezing and thawing ground. In order to provide stability to the foundation and the home, the footing must extend deep into the ground, beyond the frost line. However this does not mean it will not be affected by changing weather conditions.
Most new homes have basements and these are used to house the infrastructure to keep your home temperatures comfortable, plumbing including landry facilities, electrical and telecommunications wiring, storage and/or entertainment living space. A lot goes on in your basement and you want to make sure it stays dry. Excess water or moisture can damage any of these items.
Indications that you have a problem with the foundation caused by cracking, can be relatively easy to see. You might have visible cracks at the doorways or windows, bricks and mortar, or gaps and un-level floors or walls. On the other hand, you might not be able to see the cracks because they have occurred in places that are covered by flooring or drywall. In these cases, you might discover the problem by having water or dampness appear in your basement. In either case, you need to call in a professional basement repair and waterproofing company, like City Wide Group to investigate, identify, and recommend a plan of action.
Your foundation problem may be caused by conditions on the exterior of your home. Your gutters may be allowing water to pour down on the area next to your foundation and freezing which puts pressure on your basement’s masonry. If you have landscaping that is close to the base of your home and growing well, the roots may be spreading and causing your foundation to crack. Maybe the soil around your home became excessive dry in the summer months and shrank away from your foundation and when heavy rains or snow arrived, it filled the space and then froze when winter arrived. These are all situations that can be remedied.
Once you have cracks or fissures in your foundation, you need to take steps to have them repaired. And, don’t make the mistake of thinking it’s only a small crack, it isn’t a big problem. Small cracks grow and can do so quickly because they are now allowing more moisture to collect in the space they have created. Taking steps to fix the small crack can prevent bigger, more costly problems later.
Professional repairs are well advised when you are facing foundation crack repairs. Make sure the company representatives thoroughly examine your foundation and make fully educated recommendations on how they would handle the repairs. You may opt for an interior repair which involves filling the crack or cracks with polyurethane or epoxy materials. Once the cracks are repaired, you might want to consider a full basement waterproofing project to protect against future problems.
Exterior repairs and waterproofing projects are more extensive and can involve digging a trench around the base of your home to allow the repairs to be made and whatever waterproofing process to be undertaken. Either way, you will want to protect your home and contents from damage and repairing those cracks is an important step.
When choosing your foundation crack repair company, you need to take a few steps. Check out the reputation of the companies you call, look at on-line sources to see that their previous customers have been satisfied. Make sure they have well-trained, expert technicians to work on your home and that they have appropriate certifications for insurance and worker safety. Then, make sure you know how they will stand behind the work they will do repairing your foundation.