For those of us that live in areas that have expansive clay soils, foundation problems are as predictable as the rising sun. Expansive clay soils contain minerals such as smectite clay that are capable of absorbing water, hence they exhibit volume change. Expansive soils can cause heave and settlement depending on the time of year and overall moisture content of the soils.
Some movement is likely to occur in homes built on expansive soils. We can minimize cracking and major structural damage through maintaining more consistent soil moisture levels around our homes. Using some simple steps, outlined below, and common sense we can protect our homes from the potentially devastating effects of expansive soils.
By following the above steps you will decrease the effects of expansive soils. If water is your enemy, the solution is water management. By maintaining a constant soil moisture content, your home will remain stable and unaffected by the dramatic effects if expansive soils supporting homes are allowed to become too wet or too dry.