Gaps between your walls are often caused by a home’s foundation settling into poorly compacted, moisture-softened, or shrunken soils below the structure.
If you have noticed a gap between your floor or ceiling and your walls, there are many potential causes. Unfortunately, none of them are good, but some are far easier to address than others. The most common causes of these kinds of gaps are:
Structural instability and/or foundational damage are the most serious causes of gaps in your walls and floor. Settlement, sinking, and other issues, such as dampness and bowed walls, can cause other issues in your structure which will exacerbate the gaps that are already apparent.
If a home’s joists or girders in the crawl space have become rotten or damaged, they will no longer support the floor properly. When this happens, the floorboards can sag and will warp (and can even collapse) over time. The gap between a floor and wall is often a cause of this.
If your crawl space does not have enough support columns, your floor may begin to look uneven or tilted and often will sag in certain spots. When this happens, a gap between your wall and floors may be one of the reasons. In time, this may also cause your walls to pull away from the ceiling because of the improper support.
Bowed walls, while they can be a cause of floor and wall gaps, are also concerning because they are also symptomatic of possible foundational issues. While bowing walls could be adding to the gaps between the walls and floor, fixing only the bowed walls may not remove the issue altogether.
If there is any sagging in the floor or a tilt or lean in some of the walls or a damp or musty smell or gaps between the walls and floorboards, you should contact a professional right away.
Many homeowners are under the misimpression that floor and wall gaps are not issues of concern. This is not the case. If the issue is ignored, it can (and most likely will) escalate in a variety of ways. The potential consequences of failing to address the issue include:
To fix the gaps that have opened between your walls and the ceiling or floor, you must ensure that your foundation is well supported and raised back to its original level. This can be done by a few different underpinning methods
made by Earth Contact Products.
The first of these underpinning methods is the installation of steel push piers. These piers are used to support the weight of the structure. They lift the foundation back to its original level. This helps to close any gaps that may have opened as a result of the foundation settlement or sagging joists. Once installed, steel piers will stabilize the foundation for years to come, preventing problems in the future.
Another effective underpinning method is the installation of
helical piers. These foundation piers work the same way as steel push piers, except they are screwed into the ground. This rotation provides extra support for the foundation. My Foundation Repairs can help put you in contact with a professional foundation repair contractor in your area. Contact us today for more information!