Wednesday, July 13th, 2016 by August Joffe
Out of sight, often out of mind—this is especially true when it comes to the foundation of your home. It’s something you don’t often think about until you notice telltale signs of foundation problems: cracks in walls, spaces between walls and doors or windows, and sloping floors. By the time these signs become visible, you may have some serious issues going on underneath your home.
Remember: Cracks in your walls are not normal!
What causes foundation problems? Typically, the expanding and contracting of the soil underneath the foundation can cause it to shift. This shifting results in what are often considered to be the top five signs of foundation problems:
1. Doors that stick or squeak
2. Interior wall cracks, especially near the points where walls join ceilings or other walls, or at the corners of windows or doors
3. Cracks in brick exteriors
4. Floors that sink or slope
5. Bowed walls
A few cracks and other small issues don’t always mean that the foundation is in need of repair; so don’t panic if you notice a door that sticks or a window that squeaks. But it is always best to have it checked by a porfessional.
A squeaky door might be solvable with a can of WD40! However, pay attention if you suspect there might be something bigger going on, especially if that squeaky door is combined with any of the other signs of foundation problems.
If you do notice unusual changes, look around and take an assessment of your home. Pull up rugs to check for floor cracks that are smaller on one side than the other. If a door has been sticking, check for a gap at the top or bottom. Walk around and inspect all the walls for cracks. Again, it’s the cracks that spread like spider webs or run in jagged, diagonal patterns that you have to worry about, not those that are straight and even.
The same is true for exterior cracks. Stair-step and vertical cracks are often more indicative of a problem than horizontal cracks or cracks that are larger on one end. In two-story homes, foundation problems are often more evident on the exterior of the second story than the first, so make sure you inspect both stories carefully.
Recognizing the signs of foundation problems early can sometimes help you save money in the long run by catching the problem before it requires extensive and costly repairs. There are many cost-effective and relatively simple solutions available, such as push pier systems, which not only can repair foundation problems but also restore the foundation to its original level. Helical piers require minimal excavation and are excellent for small or constrained spaces where other types of equipment might not be able to maneuver.
If you have noticed any of these signs of foundation problems, let one of our foundation specialists assess the damage and determine what type of foundation repair is best suited to your foundation issue. For a free personalized quote, call us at 210-534-4110 to set up a not cost evaluation by one of our Foundation Specialists.