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How Sinkholes Form

clock October 24, 2013 05:00 by author
Sinkhole activity and foundation settlement have the same warning signs. Call an expert to inspect your foundation and soil so you can get foundation repairs.

Why You May need Sinkhole Repair

Homeowners, especially in regions that have a karst terrain, which means the ground below the surface is made up of soluble soil such as limestone, should be aware that sinkholes may be forming. The state with the most karst terrain and where sinkholes occur most often are Florida (which is number one), Texas, Alabama, Missouri, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Pennsylvania. This type of terrain dissolves faster than other types of terrain, so when water moves through it, it creates spaces and voids. This is what causes a sinkhole. The ground will collapse. When we here in the news of a sudden, tragic event that has happened because of a sinkhole, these events are rare. What could be happening under the foundation of your home can be a slow forming sinkhole.

Looking for signs that a sinkhole may be forming are some of the same as foundation settlement. Some of the signs of foundation settlement signs are cracks in walls and/or floors, bowing walls, sloping floors, sticking windows, and leaning chimneys. Because these are some of the same signs that a sinkhole is forming and causing your foundation problem, some different signs can indicate that a sinkhole is forming. These include the cracks in the foundation form in a circular pattern and trees and fence posts are leaning. 

Being aware of how sinkholes occur and watching for the signs, will give you the knowledge needed to get the problem repaired before further damage is done. You don't need to worry about a sinkhole forming if you contact a professional at the first signs. They have the ability to fix these voids under your foundation using the best products available. The professionals that My Foundation Repairs will refer you to uses Earth Contact Products (ECP), the leading manufacturer of sinkhole repair and foundation repair products made in the industry. 

Cement grouting is done as one of the solutions for sinkholes. This grouting is applied to exact areas that need support and fill the void. It mixes with soft soil creating more support. Compaction grouting moves the soil and fills it in with a mortar-like grout. If you have observed your foundation sinking or leaning, call us for a professional to come and take a look. They are experts and have the equipment needed to evaluate the soil and find the solutions needed for the problem. 

It is important to look for any signs of foundation problems and to get a professional to take a look before the problem gets too big. Whether it be for foundation repair or taking care of a sinkhole that is forming, they will get it fixed and you will have peace of mind that your home is stabilized. The repairs that are made are long lasting and will keep your investment at the top of the market if you ever want to sell it. 

Don't lose sleep over the worry that a sinkhole that may be forming. Contact My Foundation Repairs for referrals to a professional who can examine your foundation and the soil surrounding it to give you the best solution to your sinkhole and foundation repairs.



Be Your Own Inspector for Your Foundation

clock October 23, 2013 06:04 by author
To prevent foundation failure, be your own inspector. Check for concrete cracks, poor drainage, water leaks, and the vegetation around your home.

Foundation Inspection and Foundation Failure

Every home will eventually need a new roof, new paint or routine cleaning. Homes are an expensive investment that requires routine maintenance. Every homeowner should take care of their investment as best as you can. At My Foundation Repairs, we can help you maintain your investment by providing you with tools of knowledge so you can maintain the value of your home. At My Foundation Repairs, we urge our clients to inspect four areas of their home. These four areas include concrete/slab cracks, drainage, vegetation, and water leaks. We are your foundation inspection and foundation failure service provider.

Inspect Your Concrete and Slab Cracks

First, inspect concrete/slab cracks and separations. As the foundation of the home ages, so does the concrete. You may start to notice small cracks, but there should not be cracks or separations if your home is new. Homes that are 10 years old should only have a hairline crack. As your home ages, you may notice wider cracks. Typically homes older than 10 years, may have deep foundation cracks. You may also start to notice garage column cracks or gaps around the doors/windows. If you start to notice these foundation repair signs, don't be alarm. Contact our team of professionals so we can provide a foundation inspection.

Inspect Your Drainage System

Do you have drainage problems in your home? Proper drainage is the second area of inspection. This area of inspection can be very hard to assess because small foundation cracks are usually not visible. Look at the drainage pattern on the exterior of your home. Are your gutters clean from debris or leaves? Are your drain spouts in place? Start by removing all the debris in your gutters to redirect the water away from the foundation. Water can accumulate around the home causing potential foundation damage. Our team of professionals can install a drainage system to divert the draining water.

Sloping lawns and shifting soil can also cause settling foundation and structural repairs. A downward slope can cause poor drainage resulting to water pools. Professional waterproofing contractors can install an interior or exterior drainage system into the ground away from the foundation. For shifting soil, they can support your foundation beneath your home. Our service teams can be your foundation inspection and foundation failure providers.

Inspect Your Vegetation

To find out if your home needs foundation repairs, inspect the vegetation around your home. Your beautiful plants might be a pleasant sight to look at and cause an unpleasant disaster. Over time, they can destroy your foundation if they are closer than 20 feet of your home. The roots draw in water from the soil causing  soil shrinkage. This process damages the foundation. Also, make sure your trees and shrubs aren't adjacent to your property. Trees that are growing next to your foundation can also cause problems. Foundation contractors can inspect your foundation and prevent foundation failure.

Inspect All Water Leaks

Expanding soil can cause foundation failure. Check all the water sources in and around your home which include swimming pools, fountains, leaking pipes, and sprinkler systems. Make sure all water connections are secure from dripping faucets and condensation drip pipes. If they are not functioning properly, repair these problems as soon as possible.

By inspecting your home in these four areas, you can help stop further damage to your foundation. These inspection recommendations are to help you inspect your home's exterior. At My Foundation Repairs, we will make sure you receive free estimates if you think your home needs attention. We are your foundation inspection and foundation failure service provider.



Moist Soil Equals Safer Foundation

clock October 23, 2013 05:10 by author
Dry soil beneath your home's foundation can lead to soil shrinkage and foundation damage. You can solve this issue by maintaining a steady moisture level.

Keep Soil Moist

Making sure your home's foundation has stability throughout the year takes some diligence on the part of the homeowner. When the soil beneath the foundation is not getting enough moisture, it will shrink. If you home is built on clay soil, this is especially true. Maintaining a controlled watering program is one of the first course of action that should be taken. During the hot, dry summers, the soil will crack. Then when it does rain, the water will travel into the cracks accumulate causing it to lose some of its load bearing capacity. When this happens, the home will sink or settle. By keeping the soil moist during hot, dry weather will prevent it from cracking. Maintaining a steady moisture level is important to keeping your foundation safe.

If the moisture level is not maintained during dry weather, when it does rain, the water will cause the soil to expand and move upward. This movement plus of contracting during dry weather, and expanding during wet weather put stress on your home's foundation and causes damage. By taking care of your foundation before damage occurs will save you money in the long run.

If you are vigilant and are taking the steps to keeping the soil moist, make sure the water is draining away from the foundation. Improper drainage away from the foundation will cause the water to pool in certain areas. This will make it more wet in one area and dry in another area of the foundation. Something else to consider is if the soil is not getting enough moisture, any trees or shrubs close to the foundation are also soaking up whatever moisture is left in the ground. Moist soil actually helps keep homes from settling unevenly leading to cracks in foundations. 

Foundation damage is caused not only by the moisture content of the soil but can also be cause by improper backfilled soil. If the proper process of compaction was not done at the time of building, the home will sink a few inches. This is deep enough to cause some serious foundation damage. 

Some of the signs that you may have a foundation problem are cracks in brick, bowing wallswindows and doors that stick, sloping floors, and leaning chimneys. If you notice any of these signs of foundation damage, My Foundation Repairs has the solutions. The products we use for foundation repair are made by Earth Contact Products (ECP), the leading manufacturer of foundation repair products in the industry. 

Steel piers are an excellent choice for repair issues caused by swelling clay soil, poor compaction and erosion or run off. These piers are an end bearing pier that does not rely on the soils skin friction to provide support. Helical piers have the capacity and longevity to support the foundation for years to come. They are installed quickly and can also not only be used to repair an existing foundation, but are used in new home construction. Plate anchors are used to stabilize cracked and bowed walls. These plate anchors can be installed quickly using handheld equipment with little disturbance to landscaping.

By being aware of how foundation settlement happens, homeowner's can help prevent foundation damage. But if you do notice any signs of foundation damage, contact My Foundation Repairs for a free estimate. We will be grad to answer any question you have regarding your foundation repair issues.



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