Foundations are designed to last for the entire life of your home, so you’re not likely to wake up one day and notice several signs of foundation damage. Rather, foundation damage occurs cumulatively over a long period of time, and repairs can be expensive without proper preventative maintenance measures. The American Society of Civil Engineers estimates that half of homes in the U.S. are built on unstable soil and will eventually encounter foundation damage, so take steps to maintain your home or business with this overview of foundation problems and solutions:
Soil erosion is common problem for homes that have inadequate drainage systems or hidden plumbing leaks. Moisture can cause expansive soil to exert up 5,500 pounds per square foot of uplift pressure on the edges and corners of a foundation, causing cracks in the floors, walls, and ceiling. Some types of high-sodium soils can expand by as much as 1,000 percent when saturated, and structural damage can result from as little as five percent expansion.
Soil settlement is another common cause of foundation damage. Due to drainage issues, earthquakes, soil consolidation, deep root systems, or hydrocompaction, the supporting soil can shift and cause the foundation to warp and crack. Additionally, homes on a gradual incline may accumulate soil against one wall, creating strong lateral pressure that can compromise load-bearing walls.
Solutions and Maintenance
Gutters are probably one of the last things you’d think about when it comes to long-term home maintenance, but they actually serve an important function. Aside from preventing stagnant pools of water from accumulating around your home, gutters also prevent soil expansion and compaction from stressing the edges of your home’s foundation. Surface and French drainage systems can mitigate water infiltration at the ground level, and grading the soil away from walls can also provide cost-effective and efficient water drainage.
If you’re in need of reliable foundation repair services or drainage correction and installation in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, contact Structured Foundation Repairs, Inc. at (972) 484-1200 today. We’ll provide a free assessment of any problems and offer certified foundation repair services.