If excess water is a problem, why does the foundation crack when exposed to substantial drought as well? The answer is that steady moisture is the best option for your foundation, so anything that deviates from the standard can cause problems.
It doesn’t matter why you’re experiencing drought. Each reason often ends up causing serious foundation issues. Those issues usually stem from soil expanding and contracting too much, which can lead to cracks and leaks.
- Hot Summers
When rain comes during the wet seasons, it expands the soil like a sponge. Ideally, a dry season should then slowly make the soil shrink again. However, if the season is more hot and dry than normal, it’s possible for it to cause the foundation to settle.
If the summer’s unusually dry, especially if the spring was unusually wet, you’re at higher risk for foundation issues. The gap between the soil and the foundation can create cracks and leaks, allowing for future foundation issues.
- Excessive Evaporation
Ideally, you want the soil around your home to stay about the same moisture at all times. So what happens if you end up experiencing a season that’s drier than usual, resulting in increased evaporation and drier soil around your home?
This evaporation, which also happens during very hot seasons, will cause the soil to shrink. That leads to the same foundation problems you’ll experience during hot summers: a gap appears between the shrinking soil and the foundation, leading to a weakened foundation.
- Large Trees Near Your Home
Large trees can provide shade and beauty for a home if they’re planted properly. However, if someone planted these trees without taking into account your home’s foundation or the way the trees take in water, you could find significant problems arising very quickly. That’s because of something you may not have expected: the tree’s roots.
Trees obviously need water to survive. To get that water, they typically suck it out of the ground through the roots. If you don’t water the tree very much and the soil is drier than normal, the tree will take additional water through the ground anyway. That’ll dry out the soil around your foundation, leading to shrinkage, gaps, and cracks.