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Foundation Cracks – Why Cracks Don’t Always Indicate The Underlying Issue

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crack in foundation

Like fortune tellers, foundation cracks have for a long time been misconstrued as harbingers of some type. Some people believe cracks can tell you what’s ailing your foundation and what solution you need to apply. Here’s the truth. Not every crack on the foundation bears solemn news. As you will find out, some cracks are normal.

Let’s dig a little bit deeper. At the end, you will see why cracks on the foundation of your Rush City, MN, home are not accurate pointers of the root issues.

Is there a correlation between foundation cracks and underlying issues?

When foundation cracks occur, some people think they can accurately pinpoint the underlying issue. That’s not always the case, and it’s because cracks can occur because of different things. Sometimes it’s heaving soil while other times its hydrostatic pressure or a different factor. So what you had in mind may not be close to the root problem. Knowing what else may trigger foundation cracks could help you avoid rushing into conclusions or second-guessing underlying issues.

Sometimes, the nature of the crack can reveal the problem. But don’t expect every crack to give you hints. Only a thorough inspection of the basement and the foundation walls by a professional can ascertain the root issue. Get in touch with a qualified basement and foundation repair specialist at Rush City, MN, for an inspection. We’re happy to help you uncover the source of your problems and give you a free estimate for repairs.

What Causes Foundation Cracks?

As you will see, many things can cause cracks on the foundation. So it can be difficult for the untrained eye to pinpoint the real cause of cracks. It’s only after the inspection that a foundation repair expert can tell you where the problem is. And it could be any of the following:

  • Tree roots: Large trees growing near your home may provide shade, but their roots can be problematic when they are close to your home’s foundation. New water-seeking roots can force themselves through hairline cracks, widening them. Also, mature roots expand and contract when they soak up water. In the process, they displace rocky soil below the foundation.
  • Drought: During hot and dry summers, the soil shrinks and pulls away from the foundation of your home, creating gaps that can let in water when it rains. Such a foundation is prone to cracks and stress. Look out for gaps in doors and sticking windows.
  • Poor Soil Preparation: Before you start building your home, the soil has to be graded, compressed and tested in readiness for construction. If you build a home on a site that’s not undergone any of these steps, it may settle and shift later on.
  • Expansive Soil: Certain types of soul absorb water fast and expand, exerting pressure on the foundation. Don’t overlook this type of damage as it can cause serious problems and an even greater financial loss.
  • Consolidating Soil: It is the exact opposite of expansive soil. This type loses water causing a decrease in the earth’s volume. The outcome is a dry foundation. Because they lose water, consolidating soils can’t support the weight of your home. Weight may not also be evenly distributed causing the house to be unbalanced.
  • Poor Drainage: During fall in Rush City, MN, leaves can accumulate on your gutters and obstruct the flow of water. Water may collect and start spilling on the sides of the gutters right onto the soil surrounding the exterior wall. Some water may wash away the soil while other water can seep through to the basement.
  • Plumbing Leaks: Stagnant water does more damage than saturate your carpet or furniture. It can also damage the foundation. Leaking water can exert pressure on walls, causing them to shift. Also, water can seep through porous concrete in your home and trigger cracks as it expands and contracts. Cracks in the foundation, misalignment, warped surfaces, sticky doors, and gaps all point back to your basement leaks.
  • Flooding: After a heavy downpour, some water can seep through cracks on the basement walls, expanding and exerting pressure on the concrete. This may cause foundational cracks.
  • Poor Construction: Poor planning and using sub-standard building materials can also spell doom for your foundation. Failure to compact the soil during construction could also result in imperfect levels after the home is complete. Poor grading and wrongly placed reinforcements also have a bearing on the health of your foundation.

Typical Fixes for Foundation Cracks

Different kinds of foundation cracks and problems require different solutions to fix them. Simple cracks or cosmetic cracks are just an eyesore, so you have no reason to worry about them. They can be filled and sealed with an epoxy injection. But severe cracks are different altogether and may need serious intervention including foundation piers, wall anchors, or other wall repair or reinforcement methods. We can help you prepare and budget for these fixes.

Do you suspect there’s a problem with your foundation? Stop guessing what the issue could be. Get in touch with our foundation repair experts and get a free foundation repair estimate today plus the best fixes!

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We service Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota and Eastern Montana for basement waterproofing and crawl space repair.

Fargo, ND

1330 41st St. N
Fargo, ND 58102

Minneapolis, MN

6265 Carmen Ave.
Inver Grove Heights, MN 55076

Rush City, MN

1325 S Frandsen Ave
Rush City, MN 55069

Sioux Falls, SD

101 S. Reid Street, Suite 307
Sioux Falls, SD 57103