Uneven floors can be a very frustrating issue to deal with. If you have an uneven floor in your house, it can be a chore to set up furniture or even just walk, depending on how uneven the floor is. However, even beyond the cosmetic issues, there are other problems uneven floors may herald.
Generally, uneven floors are a symptom of a much bigger problem than just the floor sagging. Fixing uneven floors is an important part of making sure your home is safe to live in, even if you have no problems getting around.
Uneven Floors and Sagging Floor Repair in Virginia, Maryland, DC
Keep reading to learn more about how to fix uneven floors and why it’s such an important thing to do. When you take advantage of a free inspection from JES, you can get personalized information showing you how to fix your uneven floor.
Do These Uneven Floors Look Familiar?
Uneven Floors FAQ
Let JES determine if your uneven floors are caused by house settling which may require foundation repair.
If you’re feeling ambitious, you may try and take on the challenge of fixing your home’s uneven floors on your own. While you do have the option to do so, there are some drawbacks when you undertake these types of DIY projects. For example, should you make a mistake amid trying to repair your home, you could cause even greater problems for yourself in the long term.
DIY and Unintentional Damage
DIY solutions can go wrong or might only scratch the surface of the problem you’re dealing with. In turn, while you might think you’ve repaired your home, you may have actually disguised your problem, allowing it more time to grow and worsen.
Similarly, if you try to invest in a quick fix for your uneven floors, you may find them just as quickly returning to their pre-repair state. As mentioned, superficial solutions tend to disguise the real problem plaguing your home. While you think your floors have returned to normal, that problem can worsen to the point where eventual repairs may be quite costly.
DIY and Your Home Repair Budget
In that vein, home DIY projects can also turn out to be significantly more expensive than you might have anticipated. Not only might you have to double down on material costs if you make a mistake, but should your solution only stave off the worst of your floor damage, you may eventually have to pay a professional to both remove your DIY solution and install their own.
In short, the benefits that many claim come along with an attempt to DIY an uneven floor solution do exist, but there’s a far greater chance that something might go wrong in the middle of your project.
More often than not, experience wins out. If you would like to discuss the causes behind your uneven floors and what solutions may suit you best, you can reach out to the professional contractors in your area.
When it comes to fixing uneven floors, you can discuss what solutions may suit your home best with a local professional. Before installing piers beneath your home or replacing damaged supports entirely, contractors in your area may suggest some of the following solutions.
Your Ideal Repairs
If the joists beneath your floor have started to fail, you’ll notice right away. Floors without appropriate support from their joists are often bouncy or sag when stepped on. In general, these floors make you feel unsafe in your home. The good news, however, is that there are methods you can use to stabilize your floors even without directly replacing your joists. The IntelliJack™ system enhances your joists, stabilizing your floor so that you can feel safe in your home again.
The IntelliJack™ system is made of galvanized steel. Coming in at about the same weight as the other joists in your home, this system resists the effects of moisture, even if you’re not able to remove it all from your home. In other words, this steel will not rust, meaning that it will continue providing your floor with the support it needs no matter what kind of moisture you may be dealing with throughout your home. This steel is also able to support more than 24,000 pounds per jack. This means that you can open your home to extensive renovation or company without having to worry about whether your floor can bear the pressure. With that in mind, the IntelliJack™ system vastly outstrips the support that wooden support posts, light-duty jack posts, or even bottle jacks can offer you.
Waterproofing Your Home
Note that the aforementioned solution will only stick if you take steps to attend to the water damage or other trouble that caused your floor to buckle in the first place. Again, you can work with a professional contractor to look over your home and inspect it for signs of structural damage or leaks.
Should you find one, you can discuss what repairs may help you restore your home to its previous condition. After you repair the damaged floor in your home, it is in your best interest to invest in home waterproofing measures. This way, you can prevent the kind of pressure or moisture build-up that causes floor damage. Some of the most effective home waterproofing measures include:
- Interior drainage systems
- Sump pumps
- Vapor barriers
- Waterproof insulation
You also have the option of investing in piers beneath your home. Piers work best as foundation repair measures when your foundation, crawl space, or basement has started to collapse. There are a few different kinds of piers available to you, including helical piers, push piers, and slab piers. These piers elevate your floor and take the weight of it off a damaged foundation or other series of supports. You can speak with area professionals to determine which of these piers might best suit your home’s needs.
If you’ve noticed you have an unlevel floor, you might not even know how it happened. Especially when it comes to uneven floors in an old house, this typically happens over many years. It’s not something that magically shows up overnight.
From a completely uneven house to a kitchen floor that’s uneven, there are typically three factors that contribute to an uneven floor. If you’re dealing with one of these, the uneven floors are just a symptom of a deeper problem.
Poor Support Design
The area underneath your floor is made up of a complex web of support columns and floor joists. This web should be able to hold up the weight of your whole home. Obviously, that’s not an easy job. The thing is, if it’s a job that someone undertook poorly, you’re going to feel the repercussions of it.
If the original construction team that built your home created a poorly designed support system, you’ll feel it through the entire lifespan of your home. For example, if the support columns were spaced too far apart, your home can have sagging, squeaky floors and gaps between the floor and the wall.
The ground on which your home is built should be able to support the weight of your home. To make sure it’s primed and ready, a construction crew will pack the dirt down tightly and scout the area to make sure it’s not likely to have support problems. However, what happens if that prediction doesn’t come true or the construction crew doesn’t do its job properly?
If the ground starts to shift and move underneath the foundation of your home, you’ll run into settling issues. This can happen because of poor construction, poor planning, or even just unfortunate weather conditions. Regardless of why it’s happening, this can cause a variety of problems, including bricks cracking and uneven floors.
Have you seen standing water in your basement, flooding in your crawl space, or dampness around your foundation? This isn’t just annoying. It can be indicative of an incredibly big problem because it can create foundational issues.
Moisture creates a perfect environment for mold, wood rot, settling, and more. If your foundation, basement, or crawl space doesn’t have proper waterproofing, you may start seeing these issues. Sometimes, that can start with uneven floors.
More often than not, it’s easier to determine when your floors are in good condition as opposed to when they’ve started to sink or buckle. A healthy floor will mesh with your wall joints, leaving no gaps in between the affiliated materials. Similarly, a healthy floor should not bounce when walked upon. If you feel actively unsafe while walking through your home, as though the floor might give out beneath you, it is in your best interest to seek out the advice and assistance of a professional contractor.
That said, your floors can start to buckle long before they show any of the signs of damage mentioned above. It can be difficult, in these early stages, to determine whether your floors are actually uneven. After all, if you’re seeing them every day, any sinkage may happen slowly enough that you may not be able to notice it at first glance.
Getting Ahead of Damage
Luckily, there are some signs that give away uneven floors, even if you aren’t entirely sure whether you have a problem on your hands. If you find yourself contending with higher humidity in your home than normal, there is a chance that things may have started to go wrong in your basement or crawl space. Similarly, if you’re having problems with your doors and windows sticking, that moisture may have permeated the structural supports beneath your home, where it can cause a whole lot of trouble for you. Dampened structural supports can bend and bow to the point where your foundation may start to slip.
Other signs that can give away an uneven floor include:
- Mold growth
- Interior wall cracks
- Gaps between your walls, floors, and doors
- Pooling water in your basement
When in doubt, you can always use a tool like a level to determine whether your floors have started to slope toward the center of your home.
If the floors in your home are uneven, you may be tempted to let them be. After all, what harm can uneven floors do to your home? As it turns out, it can be a fair amount.
Uneven Floors and Home Accidents
Uneven floors present an active danger not only to you but to any loved ones or visitors you have in your home. These floors can cause a myriad of accidents should someone lose their balance. That is long before they begin to sag. Floors that actively cave beneath your feet when you walk on them are an immediate danger to your physical safety as well as to your health. After all, these high-moisture areas can prove to be the ideal incubators for mold clusters that can, after long-term exposure, cause respiratory problems for your entire family.
Children who don’t understand that playing on a sagging floor might be dangerous can suffer from serious injuries if they treat your uneven floors like an indoor trampoline.
Uneven Floors and Your Home’s Value
It’s not just physical harm that uneven floors can do to your home, either. If you leave your floors uneven and move to sell your home, you’ll find yourself having lost a significant percentage of your home’s value. Realtors note that you can lose up to 30 percent of your home’s market value if you don’t attend to problems with your basement, crawl space, or foundation. While there are some costs associated with fixing uneven floors, doing so can net you more money when you go to move.
In short, when you work with a local contractor to fix any problems with your floors, you’re protecting your family from unexpected injuries or danger. That’s why it is in your best interest to act quickly if you begin to notice signs of damage throughout your home. The sooner you attend to the problem, the sooner you can rest easy, knowing that your family is safe from air-based mold spores or fall-related injuries.
Sagging and Uneven Floors: Your Next Steps
If you’re handling sagging and uneven floors today, it’s important that you get help as soon as possible. That will make sure you don’t end up with a completely collapsed foundational wall in the future.
Regardless of the foundation problems you’re running into, from sagging floors to cracked brick to crawl space water and beyond, JES can help. Request a free inspection today to get more help from a trained foundation repair consultant who can let you know your next steps.
Sagging or Uneven Floors Solutions
Every home’s foundation repair needs are different based on soil type, type of foundation problem, and climate. We don’t believe in a one-size-fits-all approach to your home’s foundation repair – we want to provide you with the correct solution. And we will work with you to create the best foundation repair solution for your home.
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