There is a wide array of foundation types out there. They all serve different purposes, which means each type of home could have a different foundation. One type of foundation is the concrete block foundation, sometimes just called a block foundation. If you have a block foundation, there are some things you need to be on the lookout for. One thing to look for is concrete block foundation cracks.
Cracked Block Foundation Repair in Virginia, Maryland and DC
Identifying and Repairing Issues Related to Cracked Block Foundations and Foundation Settlement
It can be worrying to start seeing cracks in a concrete block foundation. That’s in part because many homeowners may not know what to do with home cracks. If you have a cracked block foundation, read on to discover more about your options.
Do These Block Foundation Cracks Look Familiar to You?
Take a look through these different cracked block foundations. These showcase a variety of cracks in block foundations, including all the different types of cracks, the severity of cracks, and the reasons for cracking. When you contact JES as soon as you start to see worrisome cracks, you can avoid long-lasting problems.
We’re here to help you find the perfect solution for your home, and determine if the cracked blocks require foundation repair. Email us today to schedule your free inspection and estimate and we’ll let you know if your foundation needs repair or if it is something that you can fix.
Cracked Block Foundation Repair FAQ
Homeowners starting to see cracks in a concrete block foundation can have a variety of questions.
There are many DIY homeowners out there. These homeowners tend to hope for DIY options for many kinds of repair because it can save money in some circumstances. When you have a cracked block foundation, you might wonder if you can fix it yourself.
Unfortunately, this is a situation where you need to trust the experts. Here’s why.
Cosmetic Fixes Don’t Repair Structural Problems
It’s true that you could just try to resurface the area or put in additional grout or caulk to fill in the crack. While this would make the crack less visible from the surface, it wouldn’t do anything to fix the problem. These cracks typically indicate structural problems, and cosmetic fixes simply don’t repair those.
Structural problems reach much deeper than the surface. These cracks in your block foundation are sort of a blessing in disguise. Although you obviously don’t want to handle structural problems in the first place, these cracks showcase those problems before it builds to a point where it becomes dangerous.
Instead of trying to DIY your own fix for a cracked block foundation, you need to look for block foundation repair you can trust. A JES expert will be able to give you more advice regarding the perfect solution for your needs.
There’s an Underlying Problem
For the most part, structural problems don’t just appear overnight for no reason. Not only do the cracks showcase structural problems, but those structural problems are coming from somewhere. There’s a problem much deeper that you need to address.
This problem can come from many areas. For example, you may start to see structural problems because of soil erosion under your home. It may happen because the construction team improperly poured the initial concrete. It can even happen if the home’s design didn’t consider weight correctly.
Regardless of what the problem is, the point stands that there’s a problem you need to address. As a DIY homeowner, you can’t figure out that problem for yourself. That’s why you need a JES expert to help you do it.
Cracks Will Get Worse Over Time
If you just put caulk or grouting over the cracks, it’s not actually going to hide those cracks for very long. When you just ignore block foundation cracks, they don’t stay the same over time. Instead, they start to widen.
Eventually, these cracks will continue to widen to the point where your cosmetic fix will probably fall out or stop covering the problem. In this case, you’re going to have an even bigger crack that you probably won’t be able to fix with caulk or grout, and it’s going to be showing worse structural issues.
This is just one of the reasons you should deal with the issue early. If you wait until these problems are too big to ignore, it’s more likely that you’ll end up with serious trouble. When you use JES to help you handle them during their infancy, they’re more likely to cost less and have more effective treatments.
There are many different types of block foundation cracks out there. Something to notice is that different types of cracks often foreshadow different potential problems you could be having. That means it’s a good idea to look closely and see exactly which cracks you’re dealing with. It could give you a hint as to the underlying problem.
Are you dealing with cracks? Match your block foundation cracks to one of these types.
Horizontal Crack in Block Foundation
These cracks typically mean that your home’s foundation is in trouble. More accurately, horizontal block foundation cracks appear because of significant pressure from the outside of the home pushing in on the walls.
When you see a horizontal crack, you should know that the next thing that could happen is the wall may start to bow inward. The hydrostatic pressure from outside the home will simply build to a point where it starts to bend the wall in on itself. If you continue to leave it to its own devices, the wall will crumble.
There are ways to fix horizontal cracks in a block foundation. However, you need to address the problem as soon as possible, so you don’t end up waiting until the wall collapses. If it’s catastrophic enough, that could take a significant part of the house along with it.
Vertical Cracks in Block Foundation
What if the crack is vertical? Vertical cracks typically indicate that your home is settling overall. They generally mean that the home is settling more quickly or more substantially than it should, which can be devastating for your home in the long term.
One thing to note is that vertical cracks often grow over time. Not only do they grow wider, but they also grow deeper. As they do, they’ll eventually crack all the way through the foundation, allowing water to leak into the foundation area. That can cause problems all on its own as well.
Although vertical cracks typically aren’t an immediate concern, you should still talk to a JES expert as soon as possible to start work on repairing your home’s settling problems. You should also get more urgent help if you see vertical cracks appearing in more than one area.
Stair-Step Crack in Block Foundation
This stair-step pattern is most common in a cracked concrete block foundation or a brick wall. That’s because the grouting between the bricks offers a more “natural” place for the foundation to start cracking.
A stair-step pattern also indicates house settling, but in a different way than the vertical cracks. Typically, it indicates that the home is settling more on one side than on the other. When one side starts to shift more dramatically than the other, it puts excess weight on the other, which leads to stair-step cracks.
As with vertical cracks, this isn’t typically something to get help with urgently, but it still showcases problems that can lead to future structural damage, so it’s a good idea to consult JES. You should make your request more urgent if you start to notice the grouting falling out of the wall, or if the bricks in the foundation appear to be rotating out of place.
Hairline Crack in Block Foundation
One type of crack you might not see as frequently is called a “hairline” crack. You can see hairline cracks in many different materials, and that includes your block foundation. These are called “hairline” cracks because they’re typically narrower than one-sixteenth of an inch, making them less wide than a strand of hair.
These are cracks that you often don’t need repair for. That’s because they’re so small, they often don’t show up if you have foundation problems, but instead just if you have shrinkage concerns.
Concrete shrinkage is a normal thing, so if you have a few hairline cracks, there’s not usually any need to worry. However, you may want to talk to a JES expert if you’re starting to see these hairline cracks form more than a year after the initial concrete pouring or if the cracks start to widen or deepen in any way.
Instead of choosing to do your fix on your own, it’s important that you talk to a block foundation repair company near you. When you get in touch with JES to repair the cracks in your concrete block foundation, there are several benefits a JES expert will provide.
You always deserve the best options, and JES offers those. Here are the highlights.
Discern Cosmetic Cracks Versus Structural Cracks
It can be difficult to tell whether a crack showcases a structural failing or just a surface-level worry. You might not really be able to figure out how thick a crack is, and that’s an important part of telling how serious it is.
Experts have tools and lots of experience. These things tell them more about the cracks they’re looking at, and that can be an important part of telling what’s cosmetic and what’s structural.
If you want a definite answer regarding the severity of the cracks you’re handling, you should talk to JES. It’s the best way for you to know whether you’re dealing with a potentially deadly structural issue or something you can just resurface.
Offer Personalized Information
Everyone’s situation is slightly different. Your home probably may not need the same support as someone else’s home because that home will look and function differently. You need personalized information you can act on.
A web page isn’t going to give you perfectly tailored, personalized information that can fix your problems. This information is a great jumping-off point for your needs because it gives you a general idea of what cracks may mean and what the problems are. However, it can’t substitute for an expert.
If you want to know what you should do specifically, you can only really get that through JES. Talk to JES today and learn more about your options for your specific concrete block foundation cracks.
Install Repair Solutions That Work
JES offers a variety of repair options depending on the type of foundation problem and its severity. These solutions include Helical Piers, Push Piers, Slab Piers, Wall Anchors, IntelliBrace beams, and Carbon Fiber.
A JES expert will be able to evaluate your home’s specific problems and then tailor these fixes to your needs. Some of them may work for certain types of homes, while some of them will work best for others. Plus, depending on previous fixes you’ve tried, you may need a more or less aggressive option.
Personalization includes every facet of your block foundation repair from start to finish. When you get a JES agent to your home, you can take advantage of those personalization options.
Get a Real Answer for Your Block Foundation Cracks With JES
Every crack in a concrete block foundation means something different. Your ideal solution is going to be different whether you have a horizontal crack, vertical cracks, deep cracks, or shallow cracks.
There’s no one way to fix block cracks because there’s no one way to have them. If you have concrete block foundation cracks, your only step should be to contact JES and schedule a free foundation inspection. That way, a JES expert will be able to tackle your home’s problems in a personalized manner.
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