There are many reasons why a foundation can be a problem. Is a crack serious? A foundation is usually made up of or constructed of steel in the concrete, which holds the foundation together. They will crack even due to climate; hot weather, droughts, will take a toll on concrete, but cracks are common. The problem is not all cracks are the same. but it's still important to get to the bottom of what caused the crack in the first place.
There are many things to consider, like what kind of foundation is your home resting upon? Is it s slab? Is there a grade? What type of soil is typical for the area? Is the foundation a pier type?
As mentioned above, climate plays a role on your foundation and so does the expansion and contraction of the ground (soil) it was poured over.
For most people, knowing what causes foundation failure and being able to identify the tell-tale signs can sometimes be two very different things. The following indicators may suggest the need to have your foundation properly evaluated by a qualified foundation specialist or structural engineer. As the foundation of your home settles, the resulting stress can be too much for the brick veneer or foundation wall to tolerate.
We typically look inside a home for cracks on the drywall. We inspect how doors and windows shut. Are they still smooth, has the frame been compromised? We look for shifting frame work around the windows and doors. We will lift the rug where homes are situated on a concrete slab. Often a foundation will have high and low points, dips that have formed, basically indicating a dropped foundation.
Outside inspection continuous visual checks for cracks or shifts in the corners, the top of and sides of both windows and doors. We view and evaluate the level of the home, look for water leaks that may be causing soil erosion or shifting. Every home situation is different, but since not all cracks are the same, it's important that a professional is called, if you suspect or notice any changes to current cracks or new cracks that develop.
A French drain we install around the entire house, so we divert the water flow away from the crawl space. The benefit is the water is moved away, keeping your crawl space free of puddling or settling, at the same time, avoding long term affects on your foundation from water accumulation. A French drain works on the principle of gravity, being slightly sloped down from the area to be drained to the area where one wishes to redirect the water. It is typically lined with perforated clay pipe and surrounded with a landscaping textile to prevent dirt or plant roots from clogging the system. Excess ground and surface water percolates into the French drain and is directed away. Please click here 'French drain' for further information on Wikipedia.
Cracks usually appear in weak points of the wall, namely, around vents, windows, doors or other structural openings. When checking your home's foundation, these areas are the best places to start.