There are many ways homeowners can take care of their property. Whether it’s replacing old appliances, cutting energy costs with solar panels, or performing regular maintenance checks to ensure everything goes accordingly, home maintenance is a necessary job.
Still, when it comes to foundation repair, sometimes it’s best to leave it to the professionals. That shouldn’t stop you from ensuring they use the best possible mitigation techniques to prevent future issues. Here are five tips for maintaining your home’s foundation to reduce the chance of issues occurring.
One of the essential tips for protecting your foundation is to monitor the surrounding landscape. Trees and plants are some of the worst impending hazards for any home foundation for many reasons. For one, plants require lots of water to grow. Their roots soak up a lot of water from the ground, which ultimately dries up the ground soil underneath your house. As ground soil contracts due to drought or dryness, it becomes more susceptible to shifting and corrosion. Corrosion leads to landslides and ground settlement, which leads to an uneven foundation and potential sloping issues.
Another main concern regarding landscape is tree roots. While tree roots themselves cause issues with the ground soil, such as soaking up all the moisture, the roots themselves can grow near the concrete foundation and lead to cracks and other mishaps. When tree or plant roots grow too large, they become an aggressor against concrete slabs. They can shift the slabs, leading to misplacement, raise or sink the slabs, or break them. The best way to avoid this situation is to plant trees, bushes, or shrubs at least two feet away from your home. This way, you avoid any potential for root overgrowth and avoid the risk of drought under the foundation.
Watch Out for Cracks
One of the easiest signs of foundation issues is cracks and bowing. When you notice cracks in your drywall, ceiling, floors, or siding, there’s a significant chance you’re facing foundation issues. Depending on how deep the cracks are, there may still be time to save the foundation yourself. If you notice minor cracks in your basement or crawlspace, you may not need professional intervention. Clean them and fill them with a concrete mix or epoxy glue.
However, if these cracks start to web outwards or appear deep in nature, the best course of action is to call a professional foundation repair team to fill them. Major cracks signify greater foundation issues that only professionals can handle. Too many homeowners make the mistake of attempting DIY foundation repair only to face greater and costlier issues later on. A professional foundation repair team has the knowledge, experience, and tools to mitigate these issues and prevent further issues from occurring.
Test for Leaks
Another one of the five tips for maintaining your home’s foundation is to test for underground leaks. As previously mentioned, too little moisture can cause soil corrosion and ground settlement issues. However, too much moisture causes its own set of problems. When too much moisture builds up in the basement or crawlspace, it can offset the foundation. Underground water systems pose a threat to the stability of your foundation. Excess moisture risks ground settlement, which leaves your foundation sloped and uneven.
Additionally, when this moisture starts to seep into the home, it can cause mold, mildew, wood rot, and pest infestation. These are nuisances for you as a homeowner and create costly, damaging issues regarding your foundation’s integrity. If you’re unsure where to check for underground leaks, call your local municipality or plumber for assistance.
Inspect Internal Damages
Internal damages run the risk of creating a costly endeavor for the average homeowner. So it’s up to you to perform regular internal inspections to ensure everything works accordingly. This includes looking for signs of moisture and pests and testing your soil quality.
Ranch-style homes specifically face the issue of wood rot. Given that these homes use a concrete base with crawlspace wooden support beams, excess moisture and termites pose the greatest risk. Wood rot causes serious foundation issues, given the destructive force it plays on the support beams.
Also, mold poses many dangers as it often triggers allergic reactions and respiratory ailments. Therefore, inspect for these issues immediately. If you believe your home is at risk, call a plumber or safety inspector to provide an initial inspection and work with you to resolve the issues.
Do Consistent Maintenance Checks
Finally, it helps to do consistent maintenance checks on your property to ensure everything runs smoothly. While there are many internal and external operations that play into your foundation’s upkeep, even basic home systems have their role. Therefore, be sure to inspect and maintain your plumbing system, HVAC system, and drainage system.
It’s also important to maintain optimal moisture levels around your home. Any plumbing leaks can cause disruptions to the moisture content leading to soil differentiation. Similarly, if your home faces any major HVAC issues, this can create more problems. If you travel frequently or are going on vacation, make sure to keep your home above 65 degrees Fahrenheit to avoid frozen or burst pipes. Otherwise, you can flood your home and seriously affect your foundation, leading to greater water damage.
Lastly, even parts of the home you wouldn’t expect to play a part in foundation maintenance, like the roof, gutters, and drainage, do. They are all inherently responsible for dispersing rainwater away from your home to avoid flooding. If any part is damaged or improperly functioning, this could lead to greater issues later on.
If you suspect any foundation issues in your home, the best thing to do is call The Crack Guys to inspect it. We’re your go-to home repair company focused on foundation maintenance. If you notice cracks in your drywall, ceilings, or floors, or you have doors and windows that don’t close properly, there’s a good chance you face foundation issues. We have the tools, knowledge, and years of training to repair concrete slabs, reinforce crawlspace support, or fill in major cracks so that you don’t need to stress. Call us for a free initial quote, and we’ll inspect the property and suggest the best solutions for your issues.