Foundation damage is virtually inevitable for a home that's old enough, and even though it occurs over many years, it's still a surprise to many homeowners. Homes move and shift with the soil, which will put pressure on the sides and the base in such a way that can collapse the whole home if owners don't recognize the problem. For a better idea of what can be done to help prevent and correct foundation damage, keep the following facts in mind.
There are a few early signs that Saanich East homeowners can look for well before the home starts to bulge and sag past the point of no return. If the doors and windows aren't closing properly, then this could be a sign that the home has shifted in one direction or the other. In addition, small puddles near the supports of a basement may indicate that the foundation is on the brink. Finally, homeowners have to pay attention to the state of their walls. Small cracks can lead to big damages down the line if homeowners aren't paying attention.
Sizing Up the Cracks
Cracks come in all shapes and sizes, but not every crack indicates a problem with foundation damage:
- Hairline: Hairline cracks are normal, and generally not a reason to panic. However, if they get larger over the course of homeownership, then there may be cause for worry.
- Horizontal: A large horizontal crack may indicate that the soil is settling in different patterns.
- Stairstep or right angle: A crack that looks like a staircase or a right angle may also indicate that there's a problem below the surface.
Understanding the Problem
For those who live in particularly cold provinces, they need to be aware of what's happening to the home as the ground around it freezes and thaws. Untreated foundation damage will only continue to get worse as the soil settles itself. To test a theory, try treating a crack in a wall with concrete waterproof paint and then monitor the wall for the next few months. If it reappears, homeowners will need to take the next step to have the foundation examined.
Financing the Repairs
How much a foundation costs to treat will be relative to the structure itself (estimates range from $2,000 to $6,000). Homeowners may have to pay for anything from blueprints to labor costs to supplies. No matter how minor the damages may seem though, homeowners are encouraged to hire professional help to take care of the issue. The dangers of the job outweigh the cost-saving benefits of a DIY project for most homeowners.
Foundation damage may be inconvenient for a homeowner, but addressing the damage is crucial to saving the state of the home. A new foundation can cost tens of thousands of dollars, so it's of the utmost importance to catch foundation damage early. A cracked foundation can also be a safety hazard to those inside, opening up the door to everything from rats and raccoons to water damage.
Finding foundation damage is a matter of being proactive and noticing when there are changes to the walls and the home that could spell danger. All homeowners need to get into the habit of paying attention to the state of their property so they can make the fixes before they turn into major catastrophes. These tips can help homeowners spot foundation damage, but they can also help identify other hazards too, such as plumbing or electrical problems.
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