Whether you’re building your own home from the ground up or you’ve lived in the same place for decades, you know that a home requires maintenance. Part of maintaining a home is identifying potential issues—hopefully before they become bigger problems. You know how crucial a good foundation is for a home, but over the years, your foundation can wear down and cause major problems. We’ve put together a list of the types of foundation issues so that you can keep your eye out and prevent the issue altogether. Read on if you’d like to learn more.
Cracking concrete is one of the earliest and most common signs of foundation issues in a home. The cracks can be vertical, horizontal, or diagonal—each of which signals a different issue. A vertical crack is by far the most common, and it’s usually a sign of a foundation settling; luckily, a vertical crack is also the easiest to repair. A diagonal crack typically signals differential settlement (more on that later), and it could be a difficult fix. Finally, you should take a horizontal crack very seriously, because it’s often the result of a major foundation problem that may affect the structural integrity of your home.
People often begin noticing dips in their basement floors. Typically, an uneven floor indicates that the soil beneath your foundation is shifting. Moisture or humidity is generally the cause of this. Hiring a professional waterproofing company to seal your foundation is the best way to prevent further damage.
As we briefly mentioned, one of the signs of differential settlement is a diagonal crack—but what is differential settlement? In general, differential settlement means your foundation has settled unevenly. A home’s foundation could settle unevenly for a few reasons. Two common possibilities are that the soil was never compacted well or it was too damp when the foundation was laid. A professional waterproofing service can help you reduce the possibility of structural damage.
Now that you’re aware of the varying types of foundation issues, you have a better idea of what to keep an eye out for. The key to avoiding permanent foundation problems is catching them early. In other words, cracks and dips in your foundation aren’t normal, and they mean you need to make a call.