The Ins and (Getting) Outs of Cracks in Foundation

When foundation repair is neglected, it can lead to massive costs that cut heavily into your property value. On average, foundation repair costs roughly $4,000 but severe foundational issues can lead to costs of up to $50,000.

There are a number of ways to detect cracks in foundation. You may notice that your roof or floor is sagging, that your windows and doors appear crooked, or you may even see the crack, itself.

The question is, what causes cracks in foundation and what should you do about it?

Read on to learn more about the top causes of foundation cracks and what your next steps should be if you detect them.

Top Causes of Cracks in Foundation

Why do foundations crack? For some homes, the answer is simply aging. Older homes start to settle over time, putting a strain on the foundation that can lead to damage.

However, there are also more direct sources of foundation cracks, including:

  • Tree roots growing into or under the foundation
  • Soil expansion or compaction
  • Outdoor drainage issues
  • Plumbing leaks
  • Poor engineering
  • Earthquakes, sinkholes, or landslides

If you notice that your foundation is cracked, it’s important to locate the cause. You may want to work with a construction professional or home inspector during this phase, as it’s not always easy to tell at first glance what the issue is.

Addressing the Issue the Right Way

Once you know why your foundation is cracked, it’s time to address the issue the right way. What that means is working with the right professionals to not only repair the crack, itself, but to deal with the source of the crack. If you don’t address the source, you will likely find yourself with more cracks in your foundation in the near future.

For example, if the source is a plumbing leak, it may be a sign that you need water line replacement. If the issue is that you have tree roots disrupting your foundation’s structural integrity, you will probably need to go the route of tree removal.

Once a professional has addressed the source of the crack, it’s time to bring in a building contractor who has experience repairing foundations. You may find DIY foundation repair advice floating around online, but this is a job that is better left to the professionals. This is especially the case if you’re looking at a foundation that was poorly engineered from the start or can’t withstand the natural disasters in your area.

Don’t Let Your Foundation Worsen More Than It Has To

If you notice cracks in foundation, don’t put off the repairs. A cracked foundation can cause a number of related problems with your home, and the longer you wait, the bigger your repair bills will grow. When you’re addressing cracks in foundation, make sure that you will address the source and the residual damage.

Looking for more useful tips for homeowners? Take a look at our home improvement section to access guides, information, and the latest news you need to keep your home in tip-top shape.

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