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Foundation Crack Repair
Foundation crack repair is a job that we perform on a regular basis. Homes throughout the eastern US are subject to a variety of conditions that can cause problems, and at some point you are likely to be in need of foundation crack repair. You may have already notices a small or hairline crack in a foundation wall, but not really addressed the issue because it is not leaking. It will definitely begin leaking eventually, so it’s better to deal with it now.
There are a variety of reasons that a foundation wall could begin to crack, and the likely cause really depends on whether your house has a basement or a crawlspace.
If your home has a basement, the most common reason for requiring foundation crack repair is hydrostatic water pressure. Hydro means water, and static means constant. The simple explanation is that there is continuous water pressure pushing from the outside of the foundation walls and basement floor.
Why is that water there? It could be water from the ground’s surface seeping down outside the walls, or it could be that the drainage system is inadequate (rainfall water should be diverted as far away from the house as possible).
The problem may also lie in the fact that water accumulates in the backfill soil. Backfill is the ground right up against the basement wall, and it is more porous and absorbent than other ground, so it’s easy for water to soak into that earth.
If you are in need of foundation crack repair and your house has a crawlspace (not a full basement), then the problem most likely is due to the house settling. We see this pretty regularly. Over time the soil absorbs water and then the soil dries up as the water evaporates. These elements, combined with the house aging over a period of years, means that there will be some settling into the ground. Since this settling does not happen uniformly around the slab or crawlspace, the house will be in need of foundation crack repair.
So how do we fix this for you? We do it through a process called piering. This is a highly specialized procedure that requires experience, skill and equipment. Piering just means that we drill under the house – completely under the crawlspace – until we hit bedrock. That’s when we know we have a solid, non-moving surface with which to work. Steel pipes are driven in, and brackets are attached to the top of those pipes. These brackets are what will be holding your foundation in place.
Once that is all in place, the brackets are ratcheted upward. This effectively moves your foundation up to at least the height it was originally. As you might guess, this is a process that requires extreme care and surgical accuracy. This is why you need to make sure you hire a company that has extensive experience in this type of foundation crack repair. Done incorrectly, piering can place stress on other points of the house and create a whole new set of problems.
We have piered many homes and know exactly how to perform it efficiently and successfully.
When you first notice a crack in a foundation wall, your first inclination will probably be to take care of it yourself as inexpensively as possible. There are all kinds of products on the market such as sealants and coatings that promise to seal up cracks and leaks. The fact is, these are all no more than temporary fixes (if that). They only treat the symptom; we take care of the problem itself.
When you call us, we will come out and look at your foundation and see what needs to be done. We will also provide you with a detailed estimate for your foundation crack repair. We look forward to helping you take care of this problem.
We offer foundation crack repair in Richmond, Virginia as well as Midlothian, Fredericksburg, Charlottesville, Williamsburg, Ashland, Fairfax, Alexandria and Norfolk.