Construct This: A Contractor's Blog

Construct This: A Contractor's Blog

Identifying and Addressing Common Causes of Foundation Problems

by Joyce Rivera

A strong and stable foundation is the key to any sound and secure building. Any damage or problem in the foundation can cause significant damage to the entire structure of the building. There are several common causes of foundation problems that homeowners should be aware of, including soil movement, poor drainage, plumbing leaks, and tree roots. This list looks at each of these causes in detail and provides tips on how to address and prevent them.

1. Soil Movement

The movement of soil is one of the most common causes of foundation problems. Over time, the foundation undergoes shifting and settling caused by the soil's expansion and contraction due to varying moisture levels. When houses are built on unstable or expansive soil, it can lead to major structural damage to the foundation. To safeguard against soil movement, homeowners should ensure a consistent level of moisture is maintained in the soil surrounding the foundation. This proactive measure proves effective in preserving the stability of the property. Watering the soil during dry periods and managing drainage around the foundation can also help prevent soil movement.

2. Poor Drainage

Inadequate drainage poses a significant risk to soil stability, potentially resulting in troublesome foundation issues. The accumulation of water around the foundation saturates the soil, triggering movement and settling. It is imperative to address this concern to maintain a robust and secure foundation. Homeowners should ensure that gutters and downspouts are functioning properly and direct water away from the foundation. French drains or other forms of drainage systems can also be installed around the foundation to prevent excess water buildup.

3. Plumbing Leaks

Plumbing leaks can cause significant damage to foundations over time as water seeps into the soil and causes it to shift and settle. Homeowners should routinely check for plumbing leaks and promptly address them to avoid costly damage to the foundation. Period inspections conducted by a certified plumber can efficiently detect any potential concerns before they escalate into significant complications.

4. Tree Roots

Over time, the growth and expansion of tree roots beneath the foundation can lead to troublesome foundation issues. Roots can pry their way into the foundation and cause it to crack or shift, leading to structural damage. Homeowners can prevent tree root damage by planting trees away from the foundation and consistently trimming any existing trees around the home.

 5. Normal wear and tear

Minor cracks and settling are normal over time and can be addressed through regular maintenance and inspection. However, it's important to be able to identify the difference between normal wear and tear and significant foundation damage. Homeowners should inspect their foundation on a regular basis and consult a foundation repair specialist if they notice any significant changes to the structure.

Preventing foundation problems is crucial for homeowners. By identifying and addressing common causes, homeowners can take proactive steps to maintain a strong foundation. If you see any signs of damage, act quickly. For more information on foundation repair, contact a professional near you.


About Me

Construct This: A Contractor's Blog

When you want something built, who do you turn to? Okay, maybe you answered that question with a particular person's name, and that's an acceptable answer. But the answer we were really looking for was "construction contractors." This profession is full of people who can build this and that, and who can customize the things they build to meet your unique needs. Working with a construction team is like working with a bunch of people who just want to make you happy. We love that aspect of the industry, and it's something we plan on focusing on more as we write this blog.