Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about foundation issues and repairs. If you don’t see your question here, please contact us.
Q. What causes cracks?
A. Foundation cracks can have one or more causes, including:
- Excess water around the foundation due to heavy rains, melting snow, plumbing leaks, poorly installed gutters and poor lot drainage
- Soil expansion and contraction caused by seasonal cycles of rain and drought, type of soil and improper soil preparation prior to construction
- Settling due to large tree root systems under or adjacent to the foundation, or soil settling due to poor preparation
Q. What are the signs of foundation problems?
A. While it’s always best to confirm a suspected problem with Foundation Doctor, certain signs indicate that you might have a foundation problem. Call us soon to prevent further damage if:
- You see cracks in bricks or mortar joints
- Your chimney is leaning or separating from the home
- You notice gaps between the fascia and exterior walls
- Your windows and/or doors no longer shut tightly
- Your exterior doors are sticking, and interior doors don’t open or close easily
- You see cracks in your garage floor or around your garage door
- Your property has developed a new drainage pattern after a rain
- Your water bill has increased, indicating a possible broken pipe
- Your floors are warping or buckling, or the slope has changed
- Your tiles are cracking or separating from each other
- You see cracks in your plaster or drywall, or the wallpaper is tearing
- Your basement walls are bowing or cracking
Q. Does all settling impact the foundation?
A. Not all settling indicates a foundation problem. In fact, new homes often settle into the soil underneath it for a few years after construction; this does not affect the foundation’s stability. Settling that occurs in small increments is normal and does not mean that you need to call us.
However, if settling seems excessive or is accompanied by visible damage to the foundation or to your walls, doors and/or chimney, then call us. The sooner you act, the less damage your foundation will sustain — and the less harm to your greatest investment, your home.