Did you know that it takes many years for most homeowners to notice that there is foundation damage in their houses? It is because many of the early signs of damage are difficult to detect. However, once you know what to look out for, you will know how to prevent this problem.
Home foundations play a major role in making a house strong, which is why you have to take good care of them. Sometimes, there may be too much pressure on these structures leading to damage. By knowing how to detect and fix them, you save yourself from the trouble of having to repair or losing the structure altogether.
Continue reading this article to know the signs that show your foundation is getting damaged and how to fix them.
Sometimes, cracks in the foundation are so conspicuous that anyone can notice them. If the cracks cause your floors to lose their style or look like they are drifting apart, it will be easy to notice them. However, there are times when these cracks go unnoticed.
One reason you may not know when such cracks occur is when they are too small. They may be so tiny on the surface but bigger underneath. That is why you need to contact an inspector to check if there any such features, especially if you are buying a new home.
Another reason you may not notice such cracks is when they are hidden in landscaping. Everything may seem fine on the surface of the floors, but underneath, things are getting worse. This is a situation that you may never notice until it is too late.
Some of the effects of foundation cracks include the following:
If you are recovering from the effects of water damage, you need to check underneath the house to see if any soil was displaced. This happens most of the time, leaving space below the foundation.
Sometimes, the foundation will crack, and this can affect the positioning of the walls. If it cracks, its parts will move upwards, meaning that more pressure will be exerted on the walls. That is why you should check if the walls have changed their position to determine any cracks in your foundation.
If the walls do not warp, they will lean either outwards or inwards, making your house lose its original shape. Some people are tempted to correct the position of the walls without knowing that the problem is in the foundation. If you get a good contractor, they will tell you where the problem lies.
When doors stick once in a while, especially on a new building, it is normal. This is because new buildings need some adjustments for everything to fall in place. However, when they keep sticking even when the building is old, you should be worried about the condition of your foundation.
When the foundation cracks and causes the walls to lean on either side, the position of the doors are affected. They will not fit into their frames because they have either lost their shapes, shrunken or enlarged. You may also notice that the doors do not lock properly.
The worst situation is when your door frames tend to warp, meaning that the door itself will not even fit in the frame. Such movements can make it impossible to lock the house, and this should be fixed fast.
Like the doors, foundation damage affects the windows in a significant way. The movements in the foundation that lead to the changes in the position of walls may lead to windows leaving spaces beneath or above them when they lock. Always observe the ways your windows fit into the frames to know if there is any problem with cracks.
It is easier to notice changes in the way windows lock that doors. If they are always becoming loose when they lock, the frame is being forced to expand. There may also be cracks on the sides of the frames because the walls are moving.
Likewise, you may wake up one day and notice that your windows won’t lock or open even when the locks are not engaged. It is an effect of movements in the walls too. It would be best if you called an expert to check the foundation when you notice such situations.
If you have ever seen a house foundation damaged by settlement, you know how the floors look from the inside. The settlement causes the floors to appear as if the builder did not have any skill at all. There will be a lot of uneven areas, and you may wonder what could be the problem.
Uneven floors, such as in the case above, indicate that something has changed the position of the supporting foundation elements.
Uneven floors may result from poor workmanship, but you cannot rule out cracks in the foundation. It is more likely to be the case when the floors used to be, even when you moved into the house. If you are sure that it is not poor workmanship, you have to call a contractor to check the foundation for any damage.
When there is a musty smell from your crawl space, it may be because of mold growth. Mold grows in moist areas, and when they grow in your crawl space, there is moisture. Water arising from beneath the house can only mean that the foundation is at risk.
One reason the crawl space is wet all the time is because of cracks in the foundation. This can happen when the foundation is badly damaged, so it has to be checked. You will also notice that such cracks may be the reason you have water damage all the time.
To correct this situation, you may want to check your plumbing systems before checking the foundation. Maybe, one of your pipes is leaking, causing all the trouble. However, when there are no such pipes nearby, you have no option but to fix your foundation.
Why do you think floors that used to be perfect would suddenly sag and make them look like a basin? It probably is because some space has been created below them, forcing them to warp downwards. When this happens, it is because the foundation has lost its original shape.
Such situations usually occur after water damage, usually cases by a storm or flooding. The excessive water sweeps away soil from underneath the foundation, thus creating space. The flow then gives in to pressure to move downwards even though it still helps firmly on the edges.
Sagging floors are dangerous because they indicate that the stability of the entire house is no longer guaranteed. They also make your life difficult because you can barely be comfortable with such floors. To fix them, a contractor may have to remove parts of the floors, correct the damage beneath, and reinstall the supports.
Have you noticed water stagnating and pooling around the foundation? This should worry you because it shows that your structure is experiencing a lot of damage. If the water used to flow freely even when it rains heavily, you have to check the foundation to make sure that nothing has changed.
Sometimes, foundations get destroyed, and this leaves a lot of depressions around them. They may also sink inwards and make the drainage systems less effective. When this happens, water will always stagnate around them, causing an unpleasant view in your home.
Even after water restoration, this water will keep pooling around these areas until the landscape is restored. You may notice that in some cases, the stagnating water causes even more damage to the foundation as it tends to drain into it. That is why you have no option but to find help.
We all know that foundation damage can affect a home in various ways, including reducing its value or putting the occupants in danger. Once you identify any of the signs discussed, it is important to move fast and get a repair contractor to fix them. The best thing about it is that you can always get an expert repair contractor to help you avoid more problems whether you are searching locally or elsewhere.
Gets in touch with us to get a free inspection of your foundation.