Checking your walls for cracks is essential. They are an indication of potential damage that is not occurring in your home, but rather under it.
If you are noticing sudden or widening cracks in your walls, if could be your house foundations are in a mess.
Time is very important when dealing with foundation troubles. The longer it is left untended to, the worse and more costly the damage will become.
Foundations can sink for a number of reasons. One of the primary causes of foundation sinking would be poor weather, like in a storm.
If your area has experienced unusually heavy rainfall and flooding, the sodden earth may be shifting beneath your house. This will cause the foundations to shift and sink.
In some rare cases, heavy flooding may wash away the foundations entirely. While this is unlikely to happen, evacuation of the home is necessary due to the structural risk placed on the building.
A common sign of foundation problems would be cracks in plaster, drywall, and brick.
While plaster and drywall may not be indicative of foundation sinkage, brick is a warning sign that must be addressed immediately. If you have any brick structures outside your home such as a wall, you must also pay attention to the state of its integrity as it may also show signs of sinking.
The reason the brick splits is because when your house starts to sink and tilt, it puts strain on non-loadbearing walls.
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The stress of the weight as the house shifts will cause fractures throughout the structure. Without immediate correction, you are putting yourself and others in danger.
While home buyers often get a surveyor’s report on the home from the seller, it is wise to bring in a firm like Foundation Repair Pros in to check the house independently before you buy it.
Always get an independent surveyor to check the foundations before you buy a house. Doing so ensures there is no misdirection from the seller about the state of the house.
An independent surveyor will also be able to identify other structural problems with the property. Certain weeds for example are a hazard to the structural integrity, as they may grow and expand inside the small cracks in bricks.
While not essential, getting the foundations checked every five to ten years ensures problems are caught before they do any serious structural damage.
As foundation shifting is a very slow process, it is wise to do an occasional check with a level meter. Place the level meter on a flat surface built into the home, such as a windowsill.
If the level meter repeatedly is showing that the house is not level, call a professional surveyor to do a detailed examination.
It cannot be stressed enough the damage foundations shifting can do to your home. If you have any indications of walls cracking, ensure something is done before it is too late. You may just be risking your life as well as your home.