As its name suggests, the foundation is the base from which to build the rest of your structure. This means that, more than any other part of your home, the foundation must remain stable and in good condition. But how do you even know you have a foundation problem? And what are the correct ways to fix it? There are a lot of misunderstandings surrounding the topic of foundations. Some think that they can ignore them, while others become devastated by their presence that they think there is nothing they can really do about them. In this post, we want to clear up some of the misconceptions about home foundation repair. This way, you’ll know the best course of action to take if you ever face it.
Any Contractor Can Repair Foundations
Although many contractors will tell you they can repair your foundation, you should be discerning in the choice of who you ultimately hire. Some companies just tack on general knowledge of this kind of work as an added capability of their service. They can do the job, but they might not be the strongest choice for you, especially if your problems turn out to be more serious. Find professionals that specialize in foundation repair so you receive some baseline assurance of their competence. A company is unlikely to put foundation repair at the forefront of their identity if they aren’t confident in their skills.
Further than this, though, you should check other aspects of the business. Look at how many years of experience they have in the field, what past clients say about them, and their qualifications. Images of their completed jobs can also help you decide whether to hire a repair company. Taking all these characteristics together, you will end up with an accurate idea of how proficient they are.
Filling Cracks Isn’t the Only Solution
The first place your mind may go when you see cracks in your foundation and basement walls is how you should go about filling and smoothing them over. But you while a professional can effectively seal minor cracks by injecting them with a durable substance called epoxy, this may not get to the root of the problem. Those thin cavities may, in fact, be signs of larger complications with your home.
For one, you may have foundation settlement occurring. This condition describes instances where the soil around the home moves and leaves open spaces where the weight of the structure sinks and shifts as a result. This can come about because builders did not compact the soil enough during the construction phase of the house or because fluctuations in water have left the soil dry. Without water, the earth can become loose and present less resistance to changes in the foundation’s position. As these changes happen, the foundation starts to have unequal distribution of weight, and as parts of it bend, cracks appear. You may need piering to stabilize it in addition to filling in the cracks if this is the case.
In contrast, too much water can place excessive stress on the walls of the foundation and basement. As the water’s hydrostatic pressure mounts, the structure begins to cave in and crack. Here, the problem is that water is moving toward the foundation. With nowhere left to go in the saturated soil, it starts to press on the house. The carbon fiber reinforcement can help to distribute the unwanted pressure more evenly and drain tile systems can pump water away so that it does not collect in the first place. Again, filling the cracks in this situation would not be enough to prevent future difficulties.
Foundation Problems Make Homes Unsellable
This one works both ways. As someone who wants to sell their home, past foundation issues may hold you back from going through with the process. On the other hand, as a buyer, you might believe that any hint of foundation problems completely invalidates a house as a potential candidate for you. In truth, many homes may experience foundational shifts over the years. But so long as a professional correctly carries out the repair work, you shouldn’t have to worry too much about selling or buying the home. A well-functioning home and legitimate documentation to show that an expert resolved the foundation problems will speak to the good condition of the structure.
Foundation Issues are a Given
While the previous point is true, you shouldn’t fall into the error of thinking that foundation issues are a given that you must endure either. Constantly recurring shifts and damages are never a good sign and most likely indicate that either no one has completed any work to fix them (as it may be for first occurrences) or that the previous work was inadequate. If you notice cracks, bending, or moisture in your basement, you shouldn’t dismiss them as inherent characteristics of the foundation. Reach out to an expert and handle the situation in a timely manner. The longer you wait, the worse those weak points will get, as the forces that are causing them proceed to eat away at their solidity. Ultimately, putting off repairs will cost you more because of this.
Knowing all this, you now have a better comprehension of what to think if you find foundation problems in your home. Like any structural issue, you need to find the right professionals for the job who understand the deeper mechanisms that may be causing cracks and shifting there. You should also know that foundation issues do not spell the end of your home. With the attention of a specialist, they can restore it to a state of complete safety once again. If you are experiencing foundation predicaments now and need a trustworthy and adept company for foundation repair in Chicago, contact the Real Seal today. We are aware of the many factors that contribute to foundation troubles and have years of experience applying the various solutions they call for. We’ll also walk you through what we are doing before proceeding so that you can be sure you’re receiving the right work for your particular problem.