Foundation Problems

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Foundation problems are common with a majority of homes, if not all homes, at one point or another. Causes of foundation problems include concrete shrinking, settling of soil, construction imperfections, uneven soil, ground pressures, water pressures, and more. The best way to fix a foundation problem is to find out what caused it - but first, let's make sure you have a foundation problem.
Foundation problems aren't just spotted in the foundation, in fact, depending on the severity of the foundation problem, you may see signs of a foundation problem in your primary living area.

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Foundation Problems

  1. 1. Foundation Problems
  2. 2. Foundation problems are common with a majority of homes, if not all homes, at one point or another. Causes of foundation problems include concrete shrinking, settling of soil, construction imperfections, uneven soil, ground pressures, water pressures, and more. The best way to fix a foundation problem is to find out what caused it - but first, let's make sure you have a foundation problem. Foundation problems aren't just spotted in the foundation, in fact, depending on the severity of the foundation problem, you may see signs of a foundation problem in your primary living area.
  3. 3. Signs In Your Primary Living Area If your foundation problem is severe - categorized as structural damage - you could start to see signs in your primary living areas. For example: • Cracks in walls, floors, and ceilings • Uneven or sloping floors • Bowed walls or floors • Doors and windows don't open or close properly • Doors, windows, and garage doors are separating from the surrounding walls • Spaces between walls and ceilings • Spaces between walls and floors • Leaks and cracks in and around the fireplace • Tilting Chimneys • If you see any of the above problems happening in your home, it is best to call a foundation repair expert. Many will offer you a free estimate. When it comes to your foundation - it is always better to be safe than sorry.
  4. 4. Signs On Your Foundation Foundation problems are typically categorized as either "normal" or "severe". Most "normal" foundation problems can be fixed with a professional-grade, DIY kit while most "severe" foundation problems will require an expert. So how do you know what you have?
  5. 5. Vertical Cracks • • • • • Vertical cracks in masonry between two structures are often caused by differential settlement or thermal movement. Vertical cracks in masonry walls or mortar joints are often caused by shrinkage or thermal movement. If the cracks are even in width, intermittent or straight they are considered low risk and can be repaired with a professional grade crack repair kit. Vertical cracks in poured concrete are often caused by shrinkage or thermal movement. If the cracks are even in width, intermittent or straight they are considered low risk and can be repaired with a professional grade crack repair kit. Cracks in brick - straight or stepped - especially near the ends of wall most often are caused by expansion or thermal movement. If the wall bond courses are broken, there is a risk of collapse. If you have any foundation problems with a brick foundation, it is best to call a foundation repair expert. In wall, wider at bottom than top - settlement under building. These cracks may be less serious than horizontal when found in a masonry block wall. These cracks could be quite serious when found in a brick wall, especially if bond courses are broken and there is risk of collapse.
  6. 6. Diagonal Cracks Diagonal cracks can be caused by a variety of factors including frost heaves, frost lensing, shallow footings, water problems, insufficient backfill, foundation settlement, expansive clay soil, damage from a shrub/tree close to the foundation wall. For the most part, diagonal cracks can be repaired using a professional-grade crack repair (poured foundations). If you have a series of small diagonal cracks that suddenly expand, they could be a sign of a more serious problem such as sink holes, improper loading/header defect.
  7. 7. Horizontal Cracks The location of the horizontal crack is typically a good indicator of the possible causes: • If the crack is located high on the foundation wall, it is most likely caused by cold climates or vehicle loading. • If the crack is located mid-wall on the foundation, it is most likely caused by possible vehicle loading, backfill damage, or earth loading. • If the crack is located low on the foundation wall, it is most likely caused by earth loading.
  8. 8. The Solution Foundation problems are inevitable. Most foundations, at one point or another, will experience a foundation problem. Most hairline cracks or cracks caused by shrinkage on a poured foundation wall can be fixed using a crack repair. Other cracks, like large cracks or cracks in brick foundations, should be looked at first by a professional. As always, if you have to question the cause or solution - call an expert. Visit Foundation Armor to learn about great foundation repair products.
  9. 9. Visit Us! Learn more about Foundation Armor’s professional grade line of concrete sealers, concrete coatings, concrete cleaners and concrete repair products by visiting FoundationArmor.com or by calling 1-866-306-0246.

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