Signs and Symptoms

Warning Signs of a Foundation Problem

A foundation that lifts and sinks can result in problems throughout your home. Have you noticed cracks in sheetrock and siding, your floors beginning to slope, and doors and windows sticking? You may have a foundation problem. These warning signs may indicate damage to the foundation of your home. Damage to a foundation often results from changes to the moisture levels in the soil underlying your home. Changing moisture levels cause soil to expand and shrink, resulting in sinking and lifting of your home’s foundation. Your unstable foundation, if unresolved, can cause costly damage to your property. Our experts offer a free evaluation. Call or email (our Ram Jack experts) today to schedule your free property evaluation.

Cracks

Tile, wood, and concrete substrates can crack or break when an unstable foundation lifts and settles under your home. Plumbing lines can also crack, and slow seepage can cause major damage before it is detected.

Cracks in sheetrock and drywall also indicate foundation damage. These cracks racks are easy to hide. If you are considering investing in a home, make sure to carefully inspect drywall and sheetrock in areas near doors, windows, and the corners of the home where cracks from a moving foundation are most common. Inspection inside and out is critical. Cracks are easier to detect when walls are viewed from an angle.

On the outside of a home, damage from a moving foundation can be very easy to spot. Cracks form in siding and in the fascia boards around the roof. The mortar of brick siding will separate, forming a telltale stair-step pattern. Openings appear around door and window frames. Foundation cracks indicate that the foundation is sinking, usually in one area. Cracks may run through the foundation from one side of the house to the other. These are 180 degree cracks. It is the uneven settling of the foundation that causes the damage. A foundation that sinks evenly will not result in the damage found when one side or corner of the house sinks.

Misaligned Doors, Windows, and Floors

Do your doors and windows stick? Misaligned doors and windows could indicate shifting in your home due to movement in the foundation. A sloping floor can point directly to the area of your foundation that is failing. Large doors and windows, garage doors for example, will show cracks and gaps at the corner joints if your foundation begins to shift.

Chimney or Porch Pulling Away from the House
Often, an early sign of foundation issues begin with the chimney or porch separating from the structure. This can be just the foundation under the chimney, or it may be an indication that the home is moving. Either way, this is a good time to call Ram Jack.

Older Homes

Consider the following points when determining if damage to your foundation may be the cause of these symptoms: the age of your home, the area where your home is located, mature trees with large root systems surrounding your home, and weather cycles can all affect your foundation. An older home may be more likely to have foundation problems. Tree roots, old and leak-prone plumbing, weather patterns and soil variations in different regions of the United States are all things to consider when trying to pinpoint the causes of cracks, misalignment, and sloping floors.

Call or email us if you notice any of these warning signs- our experts are on hand to answer your questions and schedule free evaluations.

Why Good Foundations Go Bad

There are a number of factors that put stress on your foundation. Unfortunately, most of them are out of your control. That puts stress on you. Give us a call to find relief. We'll be happy to apply our 40-plus years of experience to your home’s unique needs. We know your home is your most prized possession; no one should have to live in fear of foundation damage.

1. Evaporation

Dry wind and intense heat can cause soil to shrink beneath your foundation. This may cause cracks to appear throughout the structure.

2. Transpiration

Tree roots may desiccate the soil beneath a home, causing the soil to shrink and the home to settle.

3. Plumbing Leaks

Water from plumbing leaks can find its way under your home, eroding soil and ultimately compromising your foundation.

4. Drainage

Improper drainage is one of the leading causes of foundation failure. Excess moisture will erode soil and cause settlement.

5. Inferior Foundation Construction

Insufficient steel and poor concrete can contribute to movement in the slab.

6. Inferior Ground Preparation

Soft soils and improperly compacted soil are the leading causes of foundation failure. Cut-and-fill situations should be prepared properly before soil can support a structure.

7. Poor Soil Conditions

Expanding and contracting soil can put added stress on your foundation and contribute to its failure.

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