The foundation of your home is critical for its structural integrity. However, various factors can cause damage to the foundation, compromising the safety and stability of your home. Recognizing signs of foundation damage and understanding common causes can help homeowners take necessary preventive measures.
Signs Of Foundation Damage To Watch For
Cracks in the walls are one of the most visible signs of an issue with your home's foundation. These cracks may appear as hairline fractures or as more significant gaps on both interior and exterior walls. While small cracks may be due to normal settling or seasonal changes in temperature and humidity levels, larger cracks or those that grow over time could indicate a more severe problem with your foundation.
Uneven floors are another sign of an issue with your home's structure. Sloping floors can result from shifting soil beneath the foundation or improper construction methods used when building the house. If you notice that floors feel uneven or if doors are challenging to open or close due to unevenness in the floor, it could also potentially indicate foundation issues.
Poor Soil Conditions Are A Common Cause Of Foundation Damage
Clay soils are known for their ability to expand when wet and contract when dry. This expansion-contraction cycle places significant stress on a building's foundations, increasing risks for structural issues over time as these soils move around underneath a property. Expansive soils contain minerals that absorb water quickly, which causes them to swell in volume when exposed to moisture from rainfall or other sources. As these soils expand, they can exert tremendous pressure on the foundation walls and footings, leading to damage or failure.
Moisture Has Numerous Impacts On Your Foundation
Water damage is another common cause of foundation issues, and poor drainage systems are often the culprit. If water does not drain away from your home effectively, it can accumulate around the foundation and seep into the soil underneath, which creates excessive pressure on your home's structure.
Plumbing leaks within or near your home can also lead to water damage in your foundation. Leaking pipes can cause moisture to accumulate in the soil around and under your house. This may contribute to shifting soil or erosion that stresses your foundation.
Tree Roots Affect Your Home's Foundation
Large trees planted near a house may have roots that grow towards its foundation, which could cause significant damage as they push against or even infiltrate these structures over time. Similarly, overgrown shrubs or bushes near your home can also affect its foundation. As their root systems expand in search of water and nutrients, they might displace soil surrounding a property's base, which could result in uneven settling of different sections of this structure.
Contact a local foundation company, such as Texas Foundation Experts, to learn more.