Have you been putting off basement foundation repair for your home? If so, it’s time to call a repair contractor near you! The longer you ignore concrete cracks, chips, spalling, and leaks, the more severe they become. Eventually, walls might start to bow or even outright collapse. In turn, you’ll end up paying more for repairs than if you scheduled needed fixes at the first sign of basement foundation damage.
However, some homeowners might put off needed basement foundation repair simply because they don’t understand the process. Consequently, they might assume that contractors might disrupt their schedule or make an unsightly mess on their property! Knowing more about foundation repair methods can help you through this process. Check out some common basement repair methods so you know what to expect from your contractor.
- Minor Crack Patching
Masonry patching closes developing cracks along basement walls and floors. These patches and sealants help block moisture from seeping into the space, keeping it dry and clean. Additionally, patching kits are typically very affordable, and don’t need excavation or other disruption for application.
The downside of patching kits and sealants is that they might degrade after some time. In turn, you might need to reapply the material every few years, to keep repairs strong. Also, remember that higher-quality materials almost always last longer and perform better than low-quality options. Consequently, it’s vital that you invest in name brand sealants guaranteed to last!
2. Steel Piers
Placed deep underground, steel piers offer stability for foundation concrete. These piers attach to the foundation with brackets at their top, providing added support for basement walls and floors. Steel is incredibly durable and these piers often last 150 years or more! In turn, steel piers might be the last basement foundation repair method you ever need.
3. Concrete piers
Rather than steel piers, a contractor might recommend concrete for your home’s sinking basement. The advantage of concrete over steel is that a contractor can mix the material to your property’s soil conditions. As with steel, concrete piers last for decades, ensuring a strong and stable basement foundation for as long as you own your home.
4. High-density foam
High-density foam, injected into cracks and other damaged areas, helps lift sunken concrete into place. Additionally, these foam solutions expand once injected. In turn, they seep into all those cracked areas along a basement wall or floor.
These high-density foams then dry and harden, offering an excellent solution for sealing basement cracks and chips. They’re often used for emergency repairs or for when a contractor cannot spot cracks easily. Additionally, they’re often more affordable than other basement foundation repair methods.
5. Slab Jacking
Also called mud jacking, slab jacking offers a durable repair for sinking slab foundations and basements. A contractor starts this process with excavations around damaged areas. Next, he or she runs hoses through those excavated areas.
Then, the contractor runs a special thick slurry or grout through those hoses, underneath damaged foundation concrete. In some cases, hydraulic equipment lifts a sunken foundation into position. For other properties, the grout “floats” the structure back into place. Lastly, the slurry dries and hardens, keeping the foundation level and even.
Are Foundation Cracks in a Basement Serious?
Vertical cracks along basement walls aren’t always serious. Rainwater or overly moist soil pushing against basement walls, or a new home settling, might result in vertical cracks. Some store-bought patching material can help keep out moisture and prevent the crack from spreading.
Horizontal cracks are also not always serious. These also result from soil pushing on the basement walls, causing them to bow inward. However, it’s vital that you monitor these cracks. If they spread or the walls start to shift, schedule basement foundation repair quickly.
Diagonal and stair-step cracks are often more serious than any other. These might indicate a sinking or settling foundation. Rather than simply patching over them, call a contractor for a foundation inspection. He or she might recommend piers or slab jacking, to keep the structure from settling even more over time!
Can You Fix Foundation Problems Yourself?
A homeowner might patch minor horizontal or vertical cracks along basement walls. Also, store-bought waterproof coatings can provide a measure of protection against future cracks and other damage. These coatings are also an excellent investment if you store anything in the basement, including household appliances.
However, a property owner should never attempt DIY repairs for serious foundation damage. One reason for this is that it’s easy to overlook cracks deep in foundation concrete. Two, store-bought materials are often ineffective at addressing more severe damage.
Also, remember that professional basement foundation repair contractors usually offer a warranty or guarantee for their work. Consequently, you know that work lasts, or that you have some options for added repairs if their work should fail prematurely.
Are Basement Foundation Repairs Worth It?
Never put off needed foundation repair for your property! It’s especially vital to schedule basement crack patching and waterproofing. Check out some reasons why these repairs are worth their cost:
- The longer you ignore foundation cracks, the deeper and more extensive they become. Eventually, basement walls might even bow and then crumble! Avoid this risk by scheduling timely repairs at the first sign of damage.
- Basement cracks let moisture into interior spaces. In turn, you might soon notice rusted appliances and damage to anything else stored in the space. Additionally, that moisture can lead to mold growth along walls and mildew underneath carpeting.
- Weak foundations can lead to cracks along walls and ceilings. These are unsightly and also let out your heated and cooled air, spiking utility costs.
- In addition to wall and ceiling cracks, a weak foundation can risk cracked porches and outdoor columns, doors and windows that stick or don’t lock properly, and similar issues around your property.
- A damaged foundation can lower property values! On the other hand, a repaired foundation protects your home’s value over the years.
Also, remember that a foundation repair contractor can note your property’s condition and any other dangers posed by foundation cracks. In turn, you can schedule needed repairs and ensure your property is strong and stable from the ground up!