Typically caused by changes in the soil, they cause house settling and can damage your home’s foundation. Whether you have cracked concrete blocks or a cracked concrete slab, it’s a good indication that there’s foundation settlement which needs to be fixed by a foundation repair contractor.
Understanding Concrete Cracks in Virginia, Maryland, DC
Causes & Repair Solutions For Cracked, Sinking Concrete Floors
What Causes Concrete Cracks?
Cracked concrete or a cracked concrete slab is caused by house settlement. Settling is a result of changes in the soil your home is built on, and occurs when the ground is no longer able to support the weight of your house.
A lot of rain, an inadequate drainage system or poor grading could be creating problems for the soil your home’s foundation sits on. When wet, soil expands and becomes soft– like a sponge – and pushes against your foundation, resulting in bowed walls, horizontal cracks and vertical cracks.
The hot summer days can affect more than your garden, it also evaporates the water from the soil surrounding your foundation. The dry soil pulls away from your foundation, creating a gap and shifting your home’s foundation. This can cause concrete cracks and vertical cracks in your basement or foundation walls.
The builder may have taken a short cut that has affected the soil your home is built on. After your home’s foundation is poured and dried, soil is dumped outside the foundation to help it stabilize. If the soil wasn’t compacted or the foundation was not completely dry when the soil was pour then concrete cracks can develop.
Concrete Foundations and Slab Settlement
If you’ve tried to repair cracked concrete yourself without being successful, there’s a good chance you’re dealing with a foundation settlement problem. It’s a very common homeowner problem. Note the following settlement signs:
Cracks in Concrete Floor
Sinking Floors and Wall Separation
Interior Wall Cracks - Commonly in Corners
When a concrete floor settles, it can mean serious damage to your home. The causes of floor slab settlement are almost always due to the soils underneath being unable to support the weight of the concrete. Often times settlement accompanies additional foundation problems.
If you find a vertical crack in your foundation or basement that is wider than 1/16″ or wider at the top or bottom, get help from a professional foundation repair contractor immediately. These types of vertical cracks indicate a serious foundation issue.
Can I Fix Concrete Cracks Myself?
Don’t assume that a cracked concrete slab or a concrete crack in your basement can always be repaired with a concrete patch, caulking or sand packing. While these quick-fixes cover up the concrete cracks they don’t address and repair the cause of the cracked concrete: your settling foundation.
It’s best to have your home inspected by a foundation repair contractor before repairing a symptom that may be a sign that you have a serious foundation issue.
Most of the time concrete cracks in your basement floor or walls mean you have a foundation issue. The cracks almost always get worse over time, creating more safety issues and tripping hazards, while becoming more expensive to repair.
Most of the time concrete cracks in your basement floor mean you have a foundation issue.
Make an appointment with one of our foundation repair specialists, and you’ll also receive a copy of the Homeowner’s Guide to Foundation Repair. We can help you determine if your foundation needs to be repaired or if you can fix the cracked floor yourself.
What Do I Do Now?
JES offers several foundation repair solutions, also known as underpinning. Underpinning is the process of stabilizing your home’s foundation by installing support piers under your home’s foundation. The piers are installed into a stable layer of earth, offering a long-term solution to your home’s foundation problems.
Your home may not need underpinning so it’s important to find the source of the concrete cracks by requesting a free inspection with one of our foundation repair experts. Our consultant will perform a complete investigation of your home’s foundation and let you know the cause of the concrete cracks.
And if your concrete cracks are nothing more than a cosmetic problem, we will tell you. Ask us questions and share your foundation repair concerns. We’re your foundation repair authority!
JES has been most impressive. The foundation inspector was professional, pleasant and patient as he described the nature of the proposed repair effort to stabilize a concrete block out building on our property. The work was scheduled to commence at a time convenient to us. Computer graphics of the proposed repair process and the equipment to be used was very impressive and helped to appreciate the magnitude of the job to be performed. Price quoted seemed reasonable given the scope of the job.
~ Josh H., Richmond, VA
Concrete Cracks Solutions
Since your concrete cracks can be caused by a waterproofing problem or a sinking foundation it is best to schedule a free inspection to find the source of your home’s problem. A few of the solutions we may recommend are JES Helical Piers, JES Push Piers, JES Slab Piers, Concrete Lifting, IntelliBrace or JES Wall Anchors.
Remember, every home’s foundation solution is different. When in doubt, call us at 757-301-4820 to schedule your free, no obligation inspection. We are happy to answer your questions and put your mind at ease when it comes to your home’s foundation issues.
Get Your Free Homeowner’s Guide to Foundation Repair
Have you ever wondered about your bowed basement walls and what causes them? Or if that drywall crack is a sign that you have a bigger problem? Our Homeowner’s Guide to Foundation Repair is your resource for learning about foundation problems, causes and solutions. Request your free foundation repair inspection and receive your own copy of the e-book, as our thanks for putting your trust in JES.