Foundation leveling is a process, which can be employed when a house or building is showing signs of foundation settlement. If the soil that lies beneath the structure can no longer bear the weight, settlement can occur, putting the building at risk.
Causes of settlement
Native soil is not strong enough to support the structure and lacks the required bearing capacity
Soil was not properly prepared and compacted before the foundations were laid and construction began
The moisture content of the soil alters over time due to seasonal changes. In the dry months, the soil can become dry and shrink, and when the rains return and temperatures drop, the water content increases again
Organic compounds within the soil can breakdown, altering composition
Foundation settlement is one of the most widespread foundation problems in the US.
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Signs of foundation settlement to look out for
- Cracks and splinters in the sheetrock
- Cracks and crevasses in the foundation walls
- Uneven, sloping floors
- Difficulty opening and closing doors due to sloped floors
- Cracks in floor tiles and concrete flooring
Is it possible to prevent foundation settlement?
- If you don’t already have rain gutters, it’s hugely beneficial to invest in them.
- If you have gutters, but you don’t clear and clean them very often, try and make a concerted effort to remove leaves and debris so that they can do their job as effectively as possible.
- Make sure your downspouts are positioned to direct water at least 10 feet away from your foundations. If the spout shoots directly to the foundations, this will impact the foundation walls. In some cities, extending the downspout 10 feet away from the premises is a building code.
If there are signs of foundation settlement, and action is required, there are various foundation repair methods that may be employed. Foundation piers can be used to stabilize or even lift the foundations. Another type of repair, for example, using helical piles or push piers, may also be recommended. Different techniques and equipment offer advantages for different projects. An experienced contractor will be able to determine which option is best based on the individual needs and demands of the project.
For more information and to get a free estimate, contact Rhino Foundation Systems today!
Why would Foundation Leveling need to be done on my home?
If your home is sinking or settling, it is very important that you contact a Foundation Repair company. Settling can cause damage to countless attributes of a foundation, and eventually the structure itself as well. A sinking and/or damaged home can cause the resale value to plumett drastically. The faster you act, the more time, money, and quality you will save!
What are some things I can look for to determine whether or not I need to seek a Foundation Leveling specialist?
There are many things to look for, and a lot of them can be obscure and discrete. Thankfully, there are also many obvious signs as well. Here are examples of the more obvious things you should be looking for around the base of your home:
- Cracks in any part of the foundation or structure
- Slanting floors and walls
- Distorted furnishings and doorways/windows
If you have looked through your home but are still unsure and want to be safe, you can always call and have a specialist head out to inspect your home.
What methods are used to level foundations?
At Rhino Foundation Systems, we offer Push Pier solutions to keep the structure raised, as well as wall anchoring and reinforcement strategies. The prices of these strategies vary depending on how far along your house is in the settling/sinking stage. For more information, visit our Push Piers page and our Wall Anchors page.
What is something I can do to keep my home from settling more?
It is still highly recommended that you reach out to an experienced Foundation Repair business. In general, however, it is in your best interest to keep water away from the foundation via rain gutters and drain systems. This is because water poses a very real threat when it comes to improperly sealed foundations, and is often the primary cause of sinking and settling right up there with shifting soil. Make sure to keep a well maintained draining system to help prevent these issues.