Your house’s structural stability relies heavily on its foundation. If you neglect a minor issue with your foundation, it could balloon into a costly disaster that could cost you tens of thousands to repair. It’s been said that prevention is always better than cure, and this couldn’t be truer than when talking about foundations. A house’s foundation is one of the most costly problems a homeowner can face and they might need to avail of services from a home remodeling contractor. Even some cracks in the cement- a weak base or settling can contribute to tons of money spent on repairs later down the line. Don’t wait for something terrible to happen before taking action; stay aware of common pitfalls threatening your home’s foundation stability.
Foundation problems often result from excessive amounts of water. As a result of excessive water, the soil swells, causing difficulties for your home’s foundation problems. On the opposite side-too, little moisture can also cause problems for the foundation. Problems arise when these floods or droughts concentrate only on one area under the foundations of a building. Furthermore, soil erosion from improper drainage can also stress your home’s foundation.
This article will look at some factors that create foundation problems in 2022.
Top 5 Factors That Create Foundation Problems
1. Soil Beneath The Foundation Swells Due To Excessive Water Absorption
One of the many reasons foundations can become damaged is because they are built on land containing too much water. When you live in an area with swampy grounds, there will always be saturation no matter what time of year it is or how dry the air may seem. This excess water causes swelling and expansion which move up against your home’s foundation, potentially causing cracks, sloping floors, or other structural damage.
When it rains, too much water seeps into the ground and causes existing silt to compact or sedimentary rocks to erode. Buildings with poor foundations may experience structural issues as a result. When it does not rain for a long time, however, this becomes problematic as well: when water is unavailable for plants for too long, the lack of moisture can cause plants’ roots to weaken and break away from the surface of the earth due to erosion.
It would be best if you always protected the foundation from surface water. In order to avoid water overflowing near the foundation, it’s vital to keep downspouts and gutters free of debris. When water collects near the foundation of your property, French drains can then be installed.
2. Formation Of Natural Sinkholes
Sinkholes happen when water begins to drain through the ground below. Without any place else for it to go, soil erosion occurs, and soon enough, caves develop. Small holes can damage your home’s foundation quickly if you don’t address them immediately. So make sure you know where they are before they become too big of a foundation issue.
3. There Was An Error In The Construction Of Your Home’s Foundation
Soil swells when it absorbs too much water and shrinks when it releases the water. Clay soil is most susceptible to this phenomenon because its large molecules are porous enough for water to seep through easily while retaining some of the liquid after absorbing it. Foundations cannot keep up with all these changes because of the back-and-forth movement.
Differential settlement can occur when a home is constructed on top of more than one type of soil. A good example would be building on two soils – one that has a high capacity for holding water and another that does not. This causes deformations in the ground, damaging the foundation fixed in the ground and framing structure. However, we cannot ignore other environmental factors such as clay or sand around your chosen construction zone; they, too, need to be accounted for during project planning.
There are two ways to improve soil stability: installing helical piles or using chemical grouts. The grout will stabilize areas where too much water collects, while the piles will remove much weight from the unstable ground. These solutions will come in handy if you need to build deep foundations. Foundation contractors can also do a great job, but they’re always rushing, so sometimes they don’t perform well enough.
4. The Foundation Dries Out And Shrinks As The Soil Beneath It Dries Out
In hot, dry weather, the soil shrinks and pulls away from your foundation causing foundation trouble. If the heat takes its toll on your home, it becomes unstable and more likely to shift. When the foundation movement occurs due to the shrinking earth, you will notice cracks in ceilings, walls, floors, or windows- even problems with opening doors or windows.
Soil may also dry up due to the root system of many trees sucking water from it. The soil will shrink, pull away from its foundations, and cause foundation issues that could lead to significant structural damage. Residents of areas with expansive soils are advised to water their lawns and trees during hot, dry periods to prevent the soil from drying or pulling away from foundations. Also, remember that too much moisture can lead to flooding later.
5. Inadequate Drainage Causes Soil Erosion
Excessive water around your home can lead to ground saturation, causing erosion. This problem could cause your home’s foundation to crumble; walls might fall, or your house may become too weak. And if you live in an area with a high water table or are close to bodies of water- underground voids could even form because of it. Many factors could cause a lack of drainage near your house.
Clogged gutters and downspouts both pose problems for homes. You must properly install downspouts to prevent the pooling of water pooling and ensure that water does not erode the foundation settlement of your house. You should also avoid low spots in yards because they can lead to long-term consequences such as damage to foundations caused by flooding, which is why it’s best to make sure these areas are clear of debris and vegetation when possible.
To fix this problem, ensure the water does not flow toward your home. Solutions include installing french drains or other water run-off assemblies.
Is It Safe To Live In A House With Foundation Problems
One cannot tell if a house has a foundation problem with uneven floors unless one inspects it. Yet, many people live in homes with these issues and don’t realize it until it’s too late – keeping in mind that houses constructed properly will still stand firm.
It can often be a safe decision to stay in your house even if it has foundation issues. However, since these problems worsen over time, you should fix the issue as soon as possible. Contact an experienced foundation repair professional in your area and ask them to come for an inspection and estimate. Almost all offer free home foundation inspections without any obligations involved.
The good news is that you can often make foundation repairs by taking help from the companies offering a foundation repair contractor. That said, homeowners must familiarize themselves with the warning signs of failing foundations. Hence, they can recognize them as soon as possible before it becomes an expensive problem and can repair the same at a low foundation repair cost.
Final Thoughts On Foundation Damage
Your home’s structural integrity is only as good as the slab foundation upon which it stands. You can avoid major disruptions by catching potential problems early or correcting them before they cause significant damage to your house.