10 Early Signs of Foundation Issues That You Should Know About

Jul 18, 2022 | Blog | 0 comments

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Foundation damage can lead to the collapse of your home or other buildings with the subsequent loss of valuable property and, sometimes, even life. As a result, checking for possible signs of home’s foundation damage is very important.

This guide shows you how to spot signs of foundation damage early enough. The foundation is the key part of every house because the entire structure rests on it. Besides, if you are living in the Kansas city, then it is highly suggested to understand these signs of foundation issues before you look for the foundation contractor in the Kansas City.

The foundation continues to settle gradually, years after constructing any building. Uneven settling of soil and some other factors can cause unequal forces on the load-bearing structure. This factor, in turn, leads to continuous damage that will affect every other part of the building.

Since the foundation is under the building, monitoring it is not very easy.

Top 10 Signs Of A Sinking Foundation 

#1.Sagging, Slumpy, or Bumpy Walls

These signs of foundation issues are easy to detect since the walls are above the ground. When the foundation settles unevenly, the pressure affects the walls and causes them to sag. These walls then slump and separate from the rest of the house.

If your house has this sign, you should get a trained eye to check out the possible extent of the damage. If left unchecked, the damage will progress quickly and may even make your house unsafe for living.

#2.Bowing or Cracked Basement Walls

Uneven surfaces in the wall of your basement are another sign that you may be experiencing an issue with your foundation. Since the basement lies in the ground, uneven settling of the soil around it causes the walls to cave inwards over time.

Large bowed surfaces on the basement’s walls are an indicator of uneven stress affecting your house’s foundation. This foundation trouble requires a quick solution that only a professional can offer.

Although minor cracks may not be significant, deeper cracks show that the foundation has come under additional stress. A good way of checking whether slab foundation cracks are progressing in your house is by attaching a small piece of glass or a microscope slide on either side of it. If the slide cracks, too, that means your walls are continuing to settle.

#3.Damp Walls or Unexplained Water Leaks

Damp walls may be the result of excessive rains or flooding, but sometimes they represent a more serious foundation failure- a foundation crack. As the soil under the foundation settles, it creates small cavities or air pockets.

Poorly built foundation settlement have larger air pockets which eventually yield large cavities. Groundwater and rainwater collect in these spaces making the walls, floor, and basement damp.

In addition, some water may seep out through cracks in the floor and form small pools, hence making unexplained water leaks.

#4.Leaning Chimney

The chimney is another indicator of a foundation problem. The unequal pressures affecting the foundation cause walls to separate. As a result, the chimney can also separate from the rest of the house.

When the chimney loses the support of surrounding walls, it slants. A slanted chimney is a vital sign of foundation issues. This issue deserves a lot of attention, and you shouldn’t try fixing it yourself. An experienced builder will help arrest any further damage early enough.

#5.Gaps Between Windows or Doors and the Wall

Doors and windows are flush with the wall, and there is no space between their frames and the wall. With time, tiny gaps may appear due to drying mortar.

However, if you notice these cracks getting bigger, it may be because of unequal stress. If this gap is large enough to fit a pen tip, you may need to look for other signs of foundation damage.

In addition, doors and windows that no longer fit into the frame are also a sign you should check

#6.Cracks in the Walls and Floors

Like cracks in the basement walls, cracks in the floor also point to possible foundation damage. Not all cracks are serious, and you can patch up small vertical cracks to stop their progress.

Alternatively, horizontal cracks that can also be seen on exterior walls need urgent attention since they often result from foundation damage.

#7.Damp or Musty Smell With Mildew or Rot in the Basement

A damp or musty smell from the basement is a sign of rotting foundation wood or water leaks. This problem is because of water in your foundations and seeping into the basement.

The mildew growth is the after-effect of a damp basement, and you should invite professionals for a thorough foundation check. Also, the dampness and mildew can destroy books, clothing, and other things stored in the basement, which makes this foundation issue urgent.

#8.Rotten Wooden Beams and Piers

Pillars and beams carry most of the load in a house. Some are made from wood and buried in a concrete foundation. When the foundation cracks and subsequently becomes damp, these pillars may rot.

Determining the source of rot is an important step when checking for possible foundation damage. Always keep in mind that poorly seasoned wood used for such beams and pillars rots easily.

#9.Tile Cracks

Uneven pressure on the floors can cause the tiles to give way and crack. Tiles are very hard and stress-tolerant, but they may not withstand a sagging foundation.

As a result, cracks in tiles may require urgent attention since they appear at later stages. Addressing these issues fast helps limit the damage to your house. Damp Crawl Space Humidity in the crawl space of a pier and beam home is a good indicator that you have foundation issues already, or might soon.

#10.Hollow Basement Floors

Finally, one of the most obvious signs of a damaged foundation is a basement floor with air pockets underneath. If you hear a thumping noise when you walk on it or the floor creaks under your weight, that may be a sign of a weak and hollow foundation.

Like the other signs listed above, it should get checked as soon as possible for possible foundation repairs.

Wrapping Up On Early Signs of Foundation Issues

Knowing how to spot signs of damage helps you address any foundation problems your house may be facing as soon as possible. From hollow & uneven floors to hanging windows, these signs are easy to spot and need a foundation repair expert for confirmation. Hence, it is strongly suggested to reach out to a foundation repair company like Foundation Maestro.

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