Identifying foundation damage can be a challenge if you’ve never seen it before. Your foundation, after all, is often less able to give away its distress than your basement or crawl space.
That said, there are some signs that indicate damage that requires immediate action. If you or an expert serving your area spots this damage early, you can invest in repairs before the value of your home deteriorates further.
Share this Image on Your Site!
Simply copy and paste the code below and you can share this infographic on your site:
What Causes Foundation Damage?
Your foundation can suffer from damage for myriad reasons. The most common include foundation settling, heave and the general deterioration of your home’s structural supports.
Your foundation becomes more vulnerable to these types of transformations when it suffers from extensive exposure to hydrostatic pressure. This type of pressure builds when water in your area accumulates outside your foundation. When that water comes into contact with your structural supports, it can cause the particles therein to rapidly expand and contract. Your foundation can crack to compensate for that stress.
That said, groundhogs and other critters can also disrupt the soil beneath your home, as can natural disasters and droughts. As the soil beneath your home changes, your foundation can settle unevenly, resulting in the aforementioned damage and the kind of degeneration of your foundation that can severely impact your home’s overall value.
Signs of Foundation Damage To Watch For
- A leaning chimney – You can look inside and outside of your home for signs of foundation damage. If the damage to your foundation has not been resolved for an extended period of time, your chimney may start to bow as the supports beneath and within it succumb to water damage.
- Sagging floors – As water works to force cracks into your home, your basement and crawl space floors may begin to take on water and sag. These floors may give up water as they deteriorate, or they may feel bouncy.
- Mold – Mold thrives when it has ready access to moisture and a dark place to grow. If you’re noticing mold in your basement or crawl space, it’s possible that a foundation leak may be letting water into your home at a higher rate than normal.
- Cracks near the floor, joints or windows – Hydrostatic pressure will cause your home’s structural supports to crack as that water tries to find a place to go. You’ll want to frequently look over your windows, joints and floor to make sure the materials holding your home together are still working as they should.
- Gaps between the floor and walls – In the same way cracks can develop in homes with extensive foundation damage, so too can the flooring of your home start to pull away from your walls. You’ll want to look for these sorts of gaps inside and outside of your home, as soil gaps can reveal spots where foundation damage may be prevalent.
- Sticking door frames – The more moisture you have in your home, the more damage your wooden door and window frames are going to suffer. If you notice it’s more difficult than usual to open your doors and windows, you may want to reach out to one of the foundation repair experts in your area.
- Sinkage – Your foundation and exterior accessories, like your front porch or pool deck, can begin to sink if exposed to groundwater or rain runoff for an extended period of time.
- Water damage or standing water – Naturally, if you’re noticing pools of water in your basement or crawl space, or if puddles tend to congregate around the outside of your home, you’ll want to get an expert’s opinion on their presence and the potential damage your home may have already suffered.
Repairing Foundation Damage
It is possible to repair foundation damage, but know that the costs of doing so will vary based on the age of your home, its size and the amount of time water in your area has had to act on the foundation. On average, according to Inch Calculator, it costs $3,500 to repair a damaged foundation. Costs, however, can vary greatly, with even more significant repairs costing $10,000 or $50,595, depending on where your home is and what kind of work needs to be done to restore the estate’s value.
If you think you may have a foundation problem on your hands, you can reach out for help. The foundation repair contractors in Fargo, North Dakota, Minneapolis, Minnesota, and St. Cloud, Minnesota, can inspect your home and provide you with a free quote on the services you may need to restore your foundation to working condition.