Cracks in basement walls are common and some of them can indicate the start of serious foundation problems that need addressing while others are considered harmless if caused by natural foundation settlement.
Do the cracks in your basement require wall repairs?
That really depends on what is causing them and whether there is foundation leaking or the foundation is becoming destabilized.
The Two Main Causes of Basement Wall Cracks
There are two general reasons why sound basement walls crack, sometimes to the point of requiring foundation wall repairs, while other times needing no repairs at all:
1. Normal Foundation Settlement
Foundation settlement is a normal change that every new structure goes through within its first few weeks or months as the building settles into the ground around it.
When settling happens, small cracks may occur in the wall due to the shifting and gentle movement of the foundation and soil around it.
Most of the time, foundation settlement repairs are not necessary unless the settling is more extreme and the cracks are more significant.
2. Hydrostatic Pressure
On the other hand, hydrostatic pressure works against the foundation due to soil expansion caused by moisture held in the soil.
If the hydrostatic pressure against the foundation is too high, numerous foundation problems can occur.
Cracks in basement walls that worsen over time are the first sign that hydrostatic pressure is becoming an issue.
When Do Basement Wall Cracks Require Repairs?
Because it is impossible to know which cracks could be a sign of concerns that will eventually require some kind of foundation wall repairs, observation upon their first appearance is essential.
Cracks due to typical foundation settlement in a newer building remain minor and stop progressing after a few weeks or months.
When more time passes and the cracking continues, the existing cracks worsen or widen, the wall starts bowing inward, or there is leaking or moisture in the basement, these are the first signs that there may be other foundation problems going on.
Active cracking in the basement wall of an older structure is another warning sign that there is some kind of structural issue developing.
Cracks caused by anything other than natural settling should be diagnosed and repaired to prevent the cracks from worsening, potentially to the point of affecting the integrity of the foundation and the entire structure sitting on it.
Have Basement Cracks and Foundation Problems Diagnosed By A Pro
Whether you are seeing fine cracks in your basement wall that keep extending or more serious symptoms like leaks or widening cracks, the best recommendation is to let foundation repairs experts take a look.
A trained foundation professional can determine the extent of the damage and whether foundation leaking repairs or other remedies should be done now or if the problem is minor and requires no actual intervention.
Foundation problems can become very serious over time, so instead of taking that chance, get your cracks diagnosed sooner rather than later and get repairs made while the problem is still easy to deal with!
Dealing With Foundation Problems in El Dorado Kansas?
Let the Pros At AAA Basement Diagnose and Repair Your Foundation Problems!
Call 316-844-1615 To Schedule Today!
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