You may be damaging your home’s foundation without realizing it. Foundation repairs are no joke and can sometimes cost a lot of money depending on the severity of the problem. The first step in preventing foundation problems is to become familiar with the things that threaten your home’s structural integrity.
Common risk factors that could threaten your home’s foundation
- Plumbing leaks – Plumbing issues can be detrimental to your foundation, especially if there’s a leak in the main line. A major leak can seep into the soil surrounding your home, eventually causing it to swell and your foundation to shift. Unfortunately, it can be hard to detect a leak in your plumbing until you notice its effects on your foundation, like cracked walls. However, there are a few telltale signs of a significant leak in your plumbing, including the sound of constantly running water, floors that feel damp or spongy, unpleasant odors, and unexpected spikes in your water bill.
- Thirsty tree roots – As we mentioned in our last blog, tree roots that are too close to your home can soak up most of the available groundwater, causing the soil near your foundation to become too dry. This causes shrinkage and eventual shifting of your foundation. If you have trees in your yard or close to your home, make sure you water them sufficiently.
- Overwatering – It’s easy to overdo it when watering your yard. The more water, the greener the grass, right? Wrong. Too much water causes soil to expand and puts excess pressure on your foundation. This can lead to structural damage that requires expensive repairs, so it’s best to pay close attention to your watering schedule and precipitation levels.
- Poorly installed swimming pools – Swimming pools, both indoor and outdoor, can cause seepage into the soil surrounding your foundation if installed incorrectly. Like overwatering, this causes the soil to expand and then deflate when it dries out again. This soil movement can lead to cracks in your interior walls, cracks in the concrete surrounding your pool, and further structural damage.
- Shoddy construction – It’s everyone’s biggest nightmare, but unfortunately, it happens. Some contractors cut corners during construction, resulting in a poorly built home. The use of insufficient steel, concrete, and other materials weakens the structure of a home and makes it more susceptible to foundation issues. If your home seems to be experiencing problem after problem, it may be worth looking into the contractor who built it.
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Assessing your home and habits for these foundation risk factors is an excellent way to discover and, more importantly, prevent foundation issues from happening. If you feel like one of these (or something else we didn’t mention) is affecting the structure of your home, allow Epp Foundation Repair to investigate and solve the problem!