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Common Indoor/Outdoor Foundation Problems | My Foundation Repairs

clock January 13, 2015 10:13 by author
Look for indoor and outdoor foundation problems to avoid costly repairs. My Foundation Repairs can help locate a qualified contractor to assess your damages.

Indoor and Outdoor Foundation Problems to Watch For

The causes of foundation problems are rarely a result of the structure of the design. Most damage is due to foundation soil that supports the structure. If you are a property owner, knowing the common warning signs can prevent most foundation issues and save you money in the long run. The sooner the problems are fixed, the better. 

There are many factors that lead to foundation problems, but the most common are due to weak bearing soils, poor compaction, inconsistent moisture content, maturing trees/vegetation or soil consolidation. If you have any of these issues on your property, look for signs of foundation issues.

Common Warning Signs of Foundation Problems

indoor and outdoor foundation problemsIndoor Warning Signs: Unfortunately, homes will settle over time and a little settlement is not a reason for concern. But it is good idea to be alert for more dramatic changes such as:

  • Sticking doors
  • Wall cracks over doorways, windows or between the walls and ceilings
  • Concrete floor cracks
  • Hard to open and close windows

Outdoor Warning Signs: Inspect the outside of your home or building for signs of foundation issues. Is your foundation straight? Measure the length of the foundation wall from each corner. Also, check for leaning or bowing walls by using a level. Bulging block or poured concrete walls will shift or move if there is pressure against the foundation walls. This is caused by soil expansion and contracting.

Crumbling or Breaking Concrete: If you have a poured perimeter foundation, check the stability of the foundation by poking it with a screwdriver. If it chips or flakes, the concrete could be deteriorating.

Rotten Wood Posts: Moisture in your basement or crawlspace can damage posts and concrete supports. Check to see if the posts are standing straight, and rested firmly beneath the beams. 

Moisture in the Crawlspace: Water puddles or standing water in the crawlspace is a sign you have poor drainage. These conditions can lead to moisture, mold growth and foundation settlement over time. Make sure gutters aren't clogged, and the soil slopes away from the home.

Foundation Cracks: Over time, cracks will form in concrete and block foundations. Hairline cracks and cracks at an L-shaped section are not a major concern. But some cracks are more serious than others, which could mean you have foundation issues. Look for the following cracks:

  • Horizontal crack - These are serious cracks that are caused by pressure against the foundation due to soil expansion and soil shrinkage.
  • Stair-step cracks - Cracks that are wider than 1/4 inch accompanied by a bulging wall are a major concern. Clogged gutters and poor drainage are factors that create pressure against foundation walls.

Contacting a Foundation Repair Specialist

If you have any of these warning signs, there are several repair methods used:

  • Steel Piers
  • Helical Piers
  • Helical Tieback Anchors
  • Plate Anchors
  • Hydraulic Slab Lift Pier

Don't let foundation problems get worse. My Foundation Repairs will contact an experienced foundation repair expert and give you a free inspection for your foundation problems. They will be able to determine if your settlement is normal or caused by soil-related issues. They'll help get your foundation back to normal so you can have peace of mind.



Cold Effects on Foundations | My Foundation Repairs

clock January 13, 2015 08:05 by author
Cold weather can have a huge affect on concrete foundations causing frost heave. If you notice foundation damage, hire foundation repair contractor to assess your property.

Ice Effects: How Cold Affects Concrete Foundations

cold weather affects concrete foundationsIf you live a cold climate with freezing temperatures, cold weather can have a major impact on concrete foundations. A cracked concrete foundation can result to leaks, wall cracks, and other structural damage. Uncovered foundations that are exposed to the air can freeze the ground several feet, causing frost heave under pavements, homes and buildings. The end results are destructive structures and serious foundation problems, causing you to spend money on major repairs. The best solution is to reduce frost penetration and keep water out of the soil. It is important to know what frost heaving is so you can prevent it.

Unfortunately, foundation damage can occur even before the temperature reaches the freezing point. If the temperature falls below 40 degrees for three consecutive days, the likelihood for foundation damage is high. 

So what is frost heaving and why is it destructive? Frost heaving is caused by freezing temperatures that can damage structures in two ways. 

  • Cold temperatures cause ice to freeze beneath the concrete foundation producing frost heave. Frost heaving is the movement of the soil due to the formation of ice lenses. Ice lenses are long crystals formed by layers of ice within the ground.  
  • The other way is the ground collapsing which is caused by thawing ice lenses. 

Both could affect structures causing vertical ground movement, shifting foundations, unlevel foundations, and cracks in the structure.  Foundation walls, floors, footings, retaining walls, slab pavements and other structures can be seriously affected.

So how does frost heave work? In order for frost heave to occur, there must be freezing temperatures, water and frost susceptible soil. All three conditions must be present. The process involves the following steps:

  1. When the ground freezes, it starts from the top. Since the frozen area of the ground is much harder than the unfrozen area, it locks the foundation in place. As the ground continues to freeze, the freezing process progresses downwards causing the soil below to lift the top layers. This pulls the foundation up, creating gaps and spaces beneath the foundation.
  2. The ground beneath the foundation moves, filling the gaps and spaces that have opened up. The unfrozen area under the foundation eventually freezes.
  3. As the weather warms up, the ground thaws causing the foundation to come back down. Because the space under the foundation is partially filled, it doesn't go back down to its original position.

How To Prevent Frost Heave

Frost heave is an act of nature, therefore it cannot be totally eradicated. However, it can be prevented. Frost heaving mainly occurs in low-lying areas in the ground where there are depressions or dips. In order to prevent frost heaving, reduce the amount of water in the soil to prevent freezing from occurring by combining the soil with compost. Also, apply mulch into the soil to help regulate the temperature in the ground. There are also other methods to preventing heaving such as:

  • Driving the footing deep into the soil
  • Create a 'bell' shaped fitting at the bottom of the footing to prevent the soil from moving the footing
  • Install reinforcing steel in the middle of the concrete slab

There are a variety of methods used by foundation contractors. Find the best preventative method for your property to eliminate the affects of frost heave. If you have visible damage caused by frost heaving in your concrete foundation, contact a foundation repair professional to assess your damages. They will determine the cause and provide the best repair method for the situation.



Residential, Industrial and Commercial Foundation Problems and Solutions

clock December 17, 2014 11:28 by author
If you are in need of residential, industrial or commercial foundation repair, contact My Foundation Repairs. We use ECP products for foundation repair.

Residential Foundation Problems and Repair

Your home is where you spend most of your time and it should be a safe haven for you and your family. A home is a big investment and you want to make sure that it stays strong and safe for many years to come. There are times, though, that your home may need some repairs done to ensure that it stays safe and strong. One of the issues that can occur to your home is foundation problems. Knowing what the signs are of foundation problems is the first step in getting the problem taken care of. Some of the signs that you may have foundation problems in your residence are:

Steel Piers

  • Sloping floors
  • Windows and doors that stick
  • Ceiling cracks
  • Wall cracks
  • Sloping floors
  • Stair and stoop proplems
  • Garage sinking
  • Leaning chimney
  • Floor cracks

All of these are signs that you may have a foundation that has shifted or settled. The sooner the repair is done, the better. Foundation problems can lead to total foundation failure, causing structural damage throughout the entire home. 

Foundation problems can occur due to poor soil compaction, changing moisture content in the soil, and weak bearing soils. If you notice any of the signs or if you are concerned about your home's foundation, My Foundation Repairs has foundation repair contractors that will come and inspect your home and see if you are in need of foundation repair. Our contractors use only the best products available for foundation repair. The underpinning products such as steel push piers and helical piers are manufactured by Earth Contact Products (ECP), the leader in the manufacturing of foundation repair products in the industry. 

The ECP steel push piers and helical piers are driven deep into the ground through the unstable soil until they reach a solid soil layer. The piers are individually load tested then the weight of the entire structure is hydraulically lifted onto the piers to lift and stabilize your foundaiton. If you have bowing or leaning walls, the ECP helical tiebacks are used to pull the wal back to its original level. So if you are in need of residential foundadtion repair, contact My Foundation Repairs and an expert contractor in foundation repair in your area will come and give you a free inspection and offer the foundation repair solution for your needs.

Industrial Foundation Problems and Repair

Keeping industrial property properly maintained will increase annual revenue and reduce liability issues. Industrial foundation problems occur due to the constant vibration and pounding from machinery and the constant traffic. Industrial foundation problems also occur due to the constant changing in the moisture content beneath the foundation. As the soil moisture changes, it will cause the soil to heave or shrink, creating a constant shifting of the soil. As this soil shifting is taking place, the foundation that is sitting on it is also shifting and moving. So combining the heavy-duty machinery and the shifting of the soil, the foundation of the industrial structure may suffer over time.

Not all foundation repair contractors have the ability to repair industrial facilities. My Foundation Repairs uses contractors with experience and knowledge in repairing industrial foundations. The foundation repair products used for industrial foundation repair are manufactured by ECP and are the best in the industry. 

ECP steel push piers are installed deep into the ground until they reach a solid soil layer. Each pier is then load tested. After the load testing is completed the structure is lifted onto the piers and the foundation is stabilized. These piers can be installed year-round without any major disruption. It is important to keep your industrial facility properly maintained. The contractors from My Foundation Repairs have 

Commercial Foundation Problems and Repair

When commercial buildings have a foundation problem, it can expedite the wear and tear on the machinery. Floor cracks are one of the signs of a foundation problem.  These cracks will create a tripping hazard and increase the liability and personal injury claims. Some of the other signs that you may have a foundation problem is a sloping floor. This, too can cause wear and tear on the machinery. 

Some foundation repair contractors are not experienced in commercial foundation repair. The contractors from My Foundation Repairs has the experience and uses the best products for commercial foundation repair. The products that our contractors use are all manufactured by ECP, the best in the industry. The underpinning products, steel push piers and helical piers, are installed deep into the ground until they reach a solid soil level, and the entire weight of the commercial structure is lifted onto the piers.

Don't let your commercial foundation problems be ignored. The longer the problem is not taken care of, the more structural damage that will occur to the structure. Let My Foundation Repairs have an experienced commercial foundation repair expert come and give you a free inspection and offer you the foundation repair method needed for your commercial foundation problem. 



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