There are many signs of floor joist failure, and it’s important to take them all seriously. In extreme cases, if you avoid addressing floor joist failure, you could find that the floor caves in one day. The good news is, it’s extremely rare for that to happen before someone notices and calls in professional help. However, do you want to take that risk? Here’s everything you need to know about how JES can help you address floor joist repair.
Floor Joist Failure FAQS
Learn more about what floor joist problems are, what causes them, and how they can be corrected by a sound solution.
There are many signs that might indicate to you that your crawl space joists are failing. Consider these more obvious signals.
When you walk past china hutches or set tables, can you hear the dishes rattle? If you walk by a window, can you hear the glass shake, even if it’s relatively quiet? If you’re hearing these rattling noises when you just walk normally, chances are there’s a problem. It shouldn’t be this obvious when you walk around your home.
What’s happening here is that your normal movement is expanding too far around where you actually are. This could signal that your floor joists give too much, causing your floors to shake even with normal walking movement. That’s a problem, and it’s important to tackle it as early as possible.
Soft and Bouncy Floors
Another indication of floor joist issues is soft, “bouncy” floors. Especially if you stand near the center of a room, does it feel like the floor gives way underneath you? Any of these signs could show that the weight is unevenly distributed, which is itself a clear sign of floor joist damage.
How do you tell whether a floor is too “soft” and “bouncy”? The easiest way is to put excess weight on the floor. Jump up and down a few times and note whether it seems as though the floor bows under your weight when you jump. If it does, chances are you’re having this exact problem.
Uneven and Sagging Floors
For this one, all you need to do is take a look at the floor. Can you notice a distinct curve in the floor? Does it look like the floor leans to one side? Can you notice sagging in the floor? This may also show up as previously unnoticed gaps underneath doors.
Once the uneven and sagging floors get extremely serious, you may even notice that it seems impossible to put anything in rooms with sagging floors. Items might just slide to one side, which can be extremely frustrating. This uneven slant indicates that one side of the floor is settling or bowing more quickly than the other.
Why should you fix this joist failure before it’s too late? Consider these much more serious problems that joist failure often develops into.
Sagging, Bouncy, and Uneven Floors
Although this is a sign of joist failure, it can also easily be something that develops more extensively the longer you have joist failure concerns. If you choose not to address joist failure, it’s very common for the sagging, bouncy, uneven floors to become extremely obvious, sometimes to a jarring point.
As mentioned earlier, this can become so prevalent that it even makes it impossible to handle interior decorating properly. If you’ve avoided addressing joist failure for so long that stacks of dishes and other items fall over if you try to place them in a specific room of your home, it’s vital that you address it now.
Tripping and Walking Concerns
This is especially important if you have elderly or disabled members of your family that regularly walk around your home, but it’s important for anyone. Even someone who can walk just fine around a regular home may end up tripping when the floor isn’t straight and even.
Additionally, when you have sagging and uneven floors because of floor joist issues, it’s common for one room to be completely different than another room. This can cause the floor to raise or lower between two separate rooms, sometimes dramatically. That’s a blatant tripping hazard, and it’s important to pay attention to it.
In extremely severe cases where you don’t handle floor joist failure as soon as possible, you can experience complete foundation failure. In this situation, the floor joists may suddenly break one day, causing the floor to cave in.
Obviously, this is an extremely scary possibility. There are many people who fear the possibility they could end up experiencing foundation failure. The best way for you to avoid this extremely scary possibility is to tackle floor joist failure as soon as you can and to schedule regular inspections for your foundation.
Understanding the underlying cause for floor joist failure is an important part of making sure you’re able to combat it. These are just a few of the common underlying causes of floor joist failure.
Poor Support Design
If the original designer did a poor job with support design, you may end up with floor joist problems. A home is massively heavy, and it requires a number of checks and balances to make sure the significant weight has enough support.
However, if the original designer didn’t calculate the weight properly, or didn’t realize exactly where the load-bearing structures would be, it’s possible for the floor joists not to have enough support to keep things stable. That means you might run into floor joist concerns.
Another potential problem is that the home could still be settling. Foundation settlement occurs for a number of reasons. The soil around the home could be unduly expansive, the soil underneath the home could have been packed incorrectly, or the home’s design could simply lend itself well to settling.
There will typically be other signs of house settlement. When house settlement occurs, especially if it’s settling more on one side than the other, you’re likely to see a shift in the way the weight rests. That means you could run into issues with floor joist support that weren’t present in the original design.
Water is another huge concern when it comes to floor joist issues. It’s important that you engage in waterproofing measures if you want to avoid issues with floor joists, because this is a significant concern that can lead to very serious problems in the future.
If you have water in your crawl space, whether it’s standing water or just general condensation, you’re opening yourself up to serious problems regarding the structure under your home. One of these problems, of course, is that you could have floor joist problems.
High Home Moisture
Do you know what the relative humidity in your home is? Have you checked? High humidity in your home probably means you also have high humidity under your home, especially since the stack effect means the air inside your home typically comes from your crawl space or basement.
High levels of humidity are nightmarish for your floor joists. The bouncy feeling that many people associate with floor joist concerns can come from floor joists that have gotten wet and now have much more “give” to them than ones that have stayed dry their entire lifespan.
Wood Rot and Mold
One of the most well-known problems that can turn into floor joist concerns is wood rot. In fact, the problem of bouncy floors is one of the things that will cause a JES expert to look for wood rot under your floors, which will typically be present in floor joists above all other things.
Mold and mildew are other problems that often give rise to floor joist problems. In either of these situations, high levels of humidity or standing water can be the root cause. It’s important to seek out what’s actually wrong with the floor and tackle what caused it.
JES recommends the IntelliJack™ crawl space stabilizer for situations where you’re dealing with floor joist failure. There are many benefits of installing this system including having peace of mind that your floors will not cave in due to an unstable foundation. Here are a few other benefits of the IntelliJack™ system.
The JES IntelliJack™ crawl space stabilizer uses galvanized steel for its stable support structure. That means it won’t rust, so it’ll last for a very long time, regardless of the level of crawl space moisture you may be dealing with.
Having a high-quality, well-designed crawl space stabilizer is crucial. However, it is important that you manage any underlying concerns. Remember that galvanized steel’s ability to resist rust shouldn’t mean you install it in an area that’s plagued with high moisture concerns.
Another huge benefit for the JES IntelliJack™ crawl space stabilizer is the fact that it’s strong. Our crawl space support system has an allowable load capacity of more than 24,000 pounds per support jack, and is tested and certified to the highest industry standards.
You don’t have to worry about placing too much weight on it.
This is an especially important benefit if you’re having floor joist failure because of poor design. When it comes to poor design, it’s most common for there to have been issues with the layout of weight distribution. The JES IntelliJack™ crawl space stabilizer can make up for any design issues that may have caused weight distribution concerns.
When a JES floor joist failure expert installs the IntelliJack™ system, you immediately get stabilization and lift. You don’t have to wait for anything to harden or completely finish. You can see the benefits associated with it as soon as it happens.
This is especially important if your floor joists are in an advanced state of disrepair. Ideally, you should contact a JES expert as soon as you realize you’re having floor joist failure concerns. However, this might not always be possible. No matter how quickly you need stabilization help, JES can help you with it as fast as possible.
Install in Conjunction with a Crawl Space Liner
Lastly, you can install the JES IntelliJack™ system along with a crawl space vapor barrier. That means you can have an encapsulated crawl space and still utilize the IntelliJack™ stabilizer without having to worry about the stability of the liner. This is especially important if you have a dirt crawl space, but you’re also having floor joist problems.
A high-quality crawl space vapor barrier is an essential part of having the best answer for crawl space moisture concerns. You should never have to choose between the crawl space vapor barrier and healthy floor joists. The JES IntelliJack™ system makes sure you don’t have to choose between these two.
Why Should I Choose an IntelliJack™ Crawl Space Stabilizer?
The decision to choose an IntelliJack™ crawl space stabilizer has to do with a variety of factors. IntelliJack™ is the most effective crawl space stabilizer, the most easy-to-use tool, and the best choice for the job when floor joist issues impact your crawl space. That includes all sorts of floor joist issues, including ones that stem from a variety of sources.
Remember that it’s extremely important to fix the basic source of the problems you’re experiencing, no matter what those problems are. In this situation, you need to consider what’s causing your floor joist problems. For example, if you don’t have an encapsulated crawl space, your floor joists may be having problems because of the moisture in your crawl space. Fixing that should be your first order of business.
If you think you’re having problems with your crawl space floor joists, consider scheduling an inspection with a JES expert. This floor joist repair expert will give you all the information you’re looking for about your crawl space. That includes knowledge about your options for floor joist repair as well as information regarding why these problems are occurring.
The Experts at JES can Help!
JES has the expertise to evaluate and repair your problematic floor joists and uneven floors. Contact us at 757-301-4820, and schedule a free inspection. We’ll evaluate your home and its supports, find out the cause of the problem, and help you find the perfect solution.