Nothing is as distressing as knowing your Cleveland, OH, home has foundation issues. The anxiety that follows can overshadow the excitement of owning a new home. After all, you’ve already spent money raising the home all the way to the roof. Construction progressed smoothly until the signs of settling appeared.
Foundation problems will force you to the drawing board. We wouldn’t encourage you to continue with the construction. Why? You will be adding weight to a foundation that’s reeling from a heavy load.
Let’s look at what happens to your foundation in summer and what you can do about it.
Why Do Foundations Suffer During Summer?
Typically, foundations are designed to have constant support from the ground they sit on. During summer, moisture evaporates from the soil, causing it to shrink and pull away from the footing. This results in foundation settling, among other issues that can damage your home.
Does Summer Heat Affect My Foundation?
The answer is, yes it does. Summer heart can instigate various foundation issues and the most likely is settling. When the ground starts warming up, the soil beneath your home loses water and shrinks. The soil crumbles and this creates a gap underneath the foundation. The rate of settlement depends on how fast the soil loses water.
You can’t always tell settling is underway down there, as the signs can be subtle. Some people realize after many months or even years the cracks they’re now seeing started way back. Unfortunately, the foundation problems will have caused serious damage and opened up their homes to water or moisture.
Regular inspection is essential in safeguarding your home from settling soil. Check for foundation cracks. Some may start small but widen with time. Be aware of these. Not only do they pose serious risks, but they are also costly to fix.
How Do I Know the Foundation is Settling?
Keep an eye out for these problem signs when carrying out a foundation inspection:
Inspect the drywall in your home for cracks or crevices. They’re good indicators of foundation settlement. Cracks may appear prominently in the upper section of your home.
When the soil starts settling, vertical cracks can appear and widen as the walls pull apart. Wider cracks at the top are signs of progressing settling. You need to act fast to restore the walls.
Another sign that your foundation is about to fail due to excess load is a tilting chimney. Pay special attention to your chimney if it’s built separately or not connected to your home’s foundation. It could collapse under its weight. Tilting is a sign that one section of the foundation is sinking.
Damaged doors and windows
Your windows and doors are likely to get damaged when the foundation settles. Both fixtures may separate from their frames. Cracks may spread out from the corners above your window or door. If you don’t notice these signs, try opening and closing your windows or doors. If they stick or have gaps, that’s a sign there’s some movement.
Best Fixes for Summer Foundation Issues
Try to ensure the foundation soil doesn’t lose water and become completely dry. You can water it a bit before the soil heats up. Use an automatic lawn sprinkler to moisten the soil around your home’s perimeter. Alternatively, install rock beds close to your foundation. They will allow moisture to leech into the soil and prevent cracks.
It’s possible to rescue a settling foundation. Depending on the type of foundation your home has and the extent of damage, your contractor will likely install a pier system such as helical piers, push piers, or slab piers to stabilize your foundation. These systems go deep into the stable bedrock. Once in place, they can raise the foundation to its original position and curtail structural damage.
If you’re experiencing any of the above foundation problems, get in touch with the foundation repair professionals at Ohio Basement Systems. We’ll provide you with a free foundation inspection and repair quote along with recommendations to fix underlying problems before they cause structural damage to your home.