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Cracks, Shifts, and Setting: The Most Common Signs of House Foundation Issues

A home is only as good as its foundation. If a foundation goes to pieces, the house that sits on top of it will come apart at the seams. As such, if you own a home, you need to keep an eye on your foundation as much as possible.

When it comes to assessing a house foundation, there are several signs that homeowners can look out for. Curious as to what these signs are? Then read on!

There are Cracks in Your Basement Walls

Perhaps the most obvious sign of foundation damage is cracking in your basement walls. If there are cracks in your basement walls, your foundation has undoubtedly experienced damage of some kind. The level of damage, however, is dependent on the manner of the cracks.

Horizontal cracks are the most troublesome, as they indicate that pressure is being applied to the exterior of the foundation. The more horizontal cracks that arise on a basement wall, the greater the chance your foundation has of caving in on itself. As such, horizontal cracks need to be repaired as quickly as possible.

Vertical cracks are not nearly as troubling, as they’re generally the result of natural settling. Nonetheless, if you want to prevent the inward flow of water and insects, you should have them repaired.

Diagonal cracks have characteristics of both horizontal and vertical cracks. In terms of severity, they fit in between the two. If you want to prevent the inward flow of water and insects, and maintain the structural integrity of your home, you need to have them repaired sooner rather than later.

Your Basement Walls are Caving In

A sure sign that you’re dealing with foundation damage is that your basement walls are caving in. This is the natural step up from wall cracks. Once such cracks have reached critical mass, they give way, allowing separate slabs of the foundation to start pushing inward.

If you notice this sign, you need to have your foundation repaired yesterday. In other words, you’re far past the point of blocking moisture and insects. At this point, repairs are needed just to keep your home standing.

Unfortunately, the repair costs for a caved-in basement wall are substantial, ranging up to several thousands of dollars. In short, if your basement wall is caved in, your bank account is going to take a big hit.

Your Floors are Sagging 

Another sign that your foundation is in need of repair is that your floors are sagging. Sagging floors come about almost solely due to foundational shifting. This shifting can come as a result of a number of entities, from improperly packed soil to water pressure and more.

To fix such a problem, you’ll have to repair not only the foundation but the floor itself. Generally, the best way to fix a sagging floor is to provide it with further support. This is typically done with the use of metal support beams.

As far as fixing the foundation goes, cracks will likely need to be filled. This responsibility is best handled by a foundation repair specialist.

Your Doors Scrape Against the Ground 

Do you find that it’s difficult to open and close one or more of your doors? If so, your foundation is likely to blame.

When a foundation shifts, it can distort the geometry of a home. When this occurs, the doorways can become misaligned, causing their corresponding doors to make contact with the floor below. As a result, said doors begin to scrape against the ground when opened and closed.

This problem should trigger an almost immediate inspection of the foundation. However, it will also require repair of its own. You’ll have to alter the positions of your door hinges so that your doors no longer touch the floor.

There’s an Excess of Bugs in Your Basement 

In order to get into a house, bugs will make their way through every nook and cranny available to them. This is true whether those nooks and crannies are in the roof, in the siding, in the foundation, or otherwise.

Therefore, if your house seems to be taking on an excess of bugs as of late, your foundation could very well be the source of the problem. This is particularly true if these bugs are being found in your basement.

Fortunately, this is a pretty easy fix. All that you need to do is call up your local foundation solutions company. They’ll detect any damage that might exist and then make the repairs necessary to eradicate it.

There’s an Excess of Moisture in Your Basement

The last sign that your foundation has experienced damage is that there’s an excess of moisture in your basement. Simply put, the more cracks your foundation has incurred, the more groundwater it will allow to seep through it. This groundwater will inevitably end up in your basement.

There are a few ways to tell whether there’s an excess of moisture in your basement. One way is to look for mold; Excess moisture almost always results in mold growth. Another option is to look out for musty smells; Musty smells and sitting water go together like peas and carrots.

If you notice these signs, your foundation is almost certainly giving way to groundwater. Nip the problem in the bud before your basement is exposed to serious flooding.

House Foundation Repair is a Must

Regardless of what you do, your home’s foundation will experience damage at one point or another. For this reason, house foundation repair is a must. If you fail to fix your foundation when a repair is needed, your home could become subject to flooding, structural inconsistencies, and insect infestations.

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About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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