From time to time it’s a good idea to walk around your home and look for signs of foundation problems. Some things to look for are cracks in walls or floors, leaning or bowing walls, leaning chimneys, even hard to open doors and windows. Don’t take any of these signs lightly. The longer you ignore them, the more devastating they can become to the home. If you notice any of these signs, it’s time to contact a professional that has experience in inspecting and suggesting the best solution to remedy the problem.
A sinking or settling foundation needs to be taken care of as soon as you see any of these signs. The sooner it’s taken care, the less amount of damage and the less it will cost you in the long run. Foundation settling is caused by soil shifting due to an either poor construction when the home was built, poorly compacted soil, expansive soils, and deteriorating supports.
As you inspect your home and find wall cracks, many homeowners believe that this was something that happened recently. However, this usually is a case where it has happened over time, and it’s important to treat these cracks as a potentially serious problem that needs to be inspected by a professional.
Soil pressure can cause walls to tilt or bow because the wall is being pushed by soil pressure. Walls then crack when they tilt or bow. These cracks occur along joint lines between individual blocks. These cracked walls increase the chances of unwanted water in your basement or crawl space. Having these tilting and bowed walls checked early, can stop serious damage from occurring to your foundation.
A leaning chimney is a sign that repair needs to be done on the support footing and foundation. The chimney is one of the essential and heaviest parts of the home, built on a small amount of space. The concrete footing that it is built on needs to be big enough to support it and keep it from sinking into the ground. If your chimney starts to pulls away from the house, gaps occur allowing water or bugs to enter causing further damage to your home.
Steel piers are a good choice for most of your foundation repair issues. They are economical and are a permanent solution for your home’s foundation. These underpinning piers are an end bearing pier that can provide safety and support because they do not rely on the soil skin friction.
Helical piers is another type of underpinning pier used. They are quick to install and excellent for foundation repair where limestone or load bearing soil are not easily accessible.
Plate anchors stabilize leaning or bowing walls and are the most economical method for stabilizing these leaning or bowed walls. The installation of these plate anchors are quick because the use handheld equipment and there is little disturbance to your yard and landscaping.