Foundation repairs can be costly, and the thought of needing to repair your foundation can be frightening. Unfortunately, ignoring problems with the foundation of your home can be a catastrophic mistake. The potential problems caused by an issue with the foundation can cause damage throughout the structure of your home.
If you suspect there are problems with your foundation, you will need a general contractor or foundation specialist to take a look at your foundation. You want to get more than one opinion, so find reputable contractors by searching for contractors near me or hardscaping near me.
Signs that there may be a problem with your foundation:
Signs of foundation problems may take time to appear, and you may not know there is a problem unless you are having a home inspection or other construction work done. However, there are some tell-tale signs that there could be a problem with your home’s foundation. These include:
- Cracks on the walls
- Cracking across the flooring of your home
- Cracks around the windows or door openings
- Crawl space floors that show sagging, or warping
- Cracks around the chimney
- A chimney that appears to lean
- Basement walls that bow from pressure
- Sinking porches or stoops
- Water intrusion with no apparent cause
If you notice any of the above problems, you need to seek an evaluation by an experienced contractor as soon as possible. In the North Shore area, contact McNeil Contracting. They can provide an estimate of the cost to repair your foundation. They also do house leveling and serve as a general contractor for your other construction needs.
What causes damage to foundations
Water is the culprit behind many types of damage to a home’s foundation. Moisture is also responsible for soil swelling and shrinking, which causes movement beneath the foundation and further damage. Improperly compacted fill soils also cause damage to the foundation. For example, a home built on an expansive clay composite that shifts frequently.
A contractor will check to see if the area around your foundation slopes for proper draining. Improper drainage can wash away the dirt support under your foundation, causing damage as the foundation settles. This type of damage will also happen if you develop a plumbing leak in the foundation.
Areas that are prone to extreme seasonal changes, or earthquakes, can also experience issues with the foundation of a home or building. Floods and droughts can change the composite of the soil under your foundation, and tree roots growing too close to your home can slowly cause damage that takes some time to notice.
Repairing the foundation will depend on resolving the cause of the problem, and the severity of the problem. The type of foundation also makes a significant difference in the cost and associated issues with repairing a foundation. Homes on piers and beams are usually less expensive to repair the foundation, while repairs to concrete foundations can be quite extensive.
Talk to an experienced contractor who has fixed foundation issues in your region. Each part of the country has unique challenges when repairing a foundation, and you want an expert who knows the area where you live. Ask questions about any suggested repairs, and have the contractor explain why they recommend a specific type of repair.
Always carefully study the reviews of a contractor, especially one that is taking on a potentially large project such as a foundation repair. Check to see if they have a listing with the Better Business Bureau, and if so, what is there rating? Angie’s List, or similar sites, is an excellent place to find previous clients. Does the contractor have a solid reputation? Do they have the experience and skill to fix your specific foundation? Always ask if they have repaired similar problems in the past, and ask if they have a customer reference for these repairs.
Problems with a foundation can sound scary, but in the right hands, it can get fixed for less than you might expect. Catching a problem early on allows a contractor to fix the issue before there is structural damage to your home. Every crack, or a bit of moisture, does not mean there is a problem with the foundation, but it is always a good idea to have a reputable contractor inspect the problem and propose a solution.