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Common Causes of Foundation Heaving and How to Fix It

Common Causes of Foundation Heaving and How to Fix It featured
Common Causes of Foundation Heaving and How to Fix It featured

If you suspect issues with your home’s foundation, heaving could be the problem. We explain common causes of foundation heaving as well as the strategies we use to repair foundations and slabs.

What is Heaving?

Heaving happens when moisture or ice causes underlying soil to significantly expand and lift a foundation or slab upward. Soil may not seem like it can make a large impact, but the more moisture it holds, the stronger the force it can exert against your foundation. In fact, the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors states that “soils capable of damaging foundations may…  exert as much as 5,500 pounds per square foot (psf) of pressure against the concrete.”

What Causes Heaving?

If your yard doesn’t drain properly, continuous or heavy precipitation can penetrate the soil beneath your home’s foundation. The soil can then expand and cause foundation damage. Your soil may also absorb excess moisture from any broken or leaking utility lines running under your foundation. Fixing these leaks ensures there won’t be unnecessary pressure against the foundation.

How Will I Know If I Have A Foundation Heave Problem?

You’ll know you have a foundation heave problem on your hands if:

  • Your doors and windows stick
  • Your floors and/or walls have cracks
  • Your floors are uneven

Keep in mind that foundation heave and foundation settlement present similar signs, so when in doubt, contact your local basement waterproofing company. They’ll properly diagnose and correct any issues.

How Can You Repair Heaving Foundation Damage?

The experts’ priority will be to remove unwanted water wherever possible. One method we use to repair a heaving foundation is to stabilize the soil with a polymer injection. This injection helps soil build resistance against water. On the other hand, if the heave damage is severe, it may be necessary to drain your foundation or repair it entirely.

As soon as you notice heaving, you should have your local professionals take care of it right away. Contact the The Real Seal today with any additional questions about foundation heaving and whether this is the best option for your home.


Austin Werner

Austin Werner is the Owner of The Real Seal LLC, a basement waterproofing and foundation repair company. Austin believes that having a highly trained and happy team is the key to success. This is reflected through hundreds of 5 star customer reviews his company has received online.

8 Responses

  1. Admiring the persistence you put into your blog and in depth information you provide. It’s awesome to come across a blog every once in a while that isn’t the same old rehashed information. Great read! I’ve bookmarked your site and I’m including your RSS feeds to my Google account.

    1. Hi Craig,

      Yes, it is possible. With enough water pressure, even dams will break. There will need to be a lot of water pressure or earth heaving for it to happen, but it is possible. Did this happen to you? Do you have any pictures you can share?

  2. 1983 house, heaved basement slab due to water pressure under foundation. Working to remediate, no one in area does this kind of work. Stabilizing area around foundation exterior, how to repair heaved slab.

    1. Hi James!

      Unfortunately the only way to fix a heaved slab is to replace it. You had an excess of hydrostatic pressure, so I would highly suggest you install a Drain Tile System around the full perimeter in order to mitigate the pressure in the future.

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