Homeowners usually have an idea of what foundation settling is, but new homebuyers may not. In new homes, settling is usually minimal, as the weight of the newly built home settles into a newly excavated site. However, over time, foundation settling can result in critical issues that could compromise a home’s stability and safety.
The soil around a home’s foundation can become oversaturated. This causes the soil to expand and swell, putting pressure on the foundation wall, which can lead to cracks. The presence of mature trees and other vegetation around a home can also cause foundation settling to occur. Trees and other vegetation with large roots near a home can draw moisture away from the soil surrounding a home’s foundation, resulting in a decreased soil volume. This can cause a home’s foundation to begin sinking or caving in on itself. Depending on the extent of the foundation settling, it can cause a number of structural issues, including not only cracking, but also water leaks, jammed doors and windows, and more.
Signs of Foundation Settling
- Windows get stuck easily or are difficult to open and close.
- The interior trim detaches from walls or around windows and doors.
- Doors won’t close or open easily.
- Cracks appear in exterior stonework or bricks.
- Cracks appear in the chimney.
- Cracks appear in the basement near poured concrete walls.
- Water is leaking into the basement from cracks in the foundation wall.
If you notice any of the signs of foundation settling listed above, you should take steps to remedy the situation before the problem gets out of control. It’s important to note that many types of foundation settling are unavoidable and occur naturally. However, there are steps homeowners can take to slow or remedy the problem. One easy way is to ensure your home has a good drainage system to divert excess moisture away from the foundation.
If you’ve noticed extreme signs that your foundation has settled, you might need to have the foundation raised back to level. When done correctly, this will stabilize the foundation and prevent it from moving or settling further. Usually, problems associated with a foundation settling require the assistance of experienced professionals to help diagnose and repair any existing problems.
If you are experiencing any problems associated with settling, give the professionals at Epp Concrete a call to schedule a free estimate.