Your home’s foundation is critical to support all those on top of it, from your home to all those inside, such as family, pets, and special family pieces. If you find yourself with a concrete foundation that is cracking, it’s essential to determine if it is safe or not. Lucky here at KC Concrete, we are available anytime for your concrete needs.
What Does a Foundation Do?
The foundation of your home, although it goes unseen, is the most essential piece of holding your home upright. The reason it’s unseen is because it’s buried in the ground sitting underneath the home. By creating a concrete slab known as a “foundation” allows the weight of the house to be distributed across a vast area. This prevents overloading the underlying soil or sediment.
What to Look for in a Cracking Foundation
In many circumstances, you can’t see the entire layout of your concrete slab, so you might not know what to look for to ensure the safety of your family and home. There are multiple steps to get a complete inspection that you can do on your own. These steps are as follows:
- Walk the exterior perimeter of your home
When examining the exterior of your home, look for bulging or a lean; this can indicate an overload of weight that a cracking foundation can cause. Your homes walls and the foundation walls should be flush and entirely in line with one another.
- Walk the interior of your home
Like with the exterior, look for bulging walls as a sign of a weak foundation. On top of that, keep an eye out for buckling on the floor. The floor can even shift, creating a sloping angle; this is caused by the movement of sediment underneath the concrete slab and can also be dangerous if left untreated.
- Check windows, walls and doors
All doors and windows should open smoothly and evenly. This is usually the first sign before the wall is affected because if left untreated, you will begin to notice cracks appear on and within the walls of your home.
These are the significant inspections that everybody should look for. If you have a basement, that’s another place that is recommended to check upon. It’s best to overreact to a situation like this then let it sit and grow. The more a home shifts and settles on a cracked foundation, the more difficult it is to fix the situation while allowing the house to stand.
What to do if your Concrete Foundation Cracks
Within a year of construction, hairline cracks are prevalent, specifically in basement walls or near windows. As long as they are no more than the width of a hairline, then there’s no need to worry. Do routine checks with the steps provided above and keep an eye on them. A lot of damage happens as the weather and temperature change causing the cracks to condense and expand, especially if there’s moisture inside.
While monitoring the cracks and if you notice a crack between ⅛ inches and ¼ inches, it should be sealed. This can be done by going to your local hardware store and purchasing caulk; caulk is used to seal the crack keeping the moisture out preventing further damage. After filling the crack, make a mark on both sides of the crack with the date and continue to monitor monthly and keep an eye on it. A side note is that if there is a horizontal crack where the wall meets the basement, it’s not a foundational problem but should be sealed.
Suppose the crack exceeds ½ inches it’s time to call out the professionals. Although the crack can turn out harmless, it’s always to call a pro out to survey the situation. If a large crack is associated with a bulge in the foundation, it’s more than likely a structural problem. If there’s a horizontal crack in the middle of a wall, that’s the most severe crack generally compared to a vertical or a stairstep crack, but all should be check by somebody qualified.
Time to Get Your Foundation Fixed!
I know it might seem stressful to get your foundation fixed, but you don’t want to waste time. Here at KC Concrete, we are here to help with your concrete foundation. On your website, reach out to have a free quote on any concrete needs you have. We are proud to provide the greater Kansas City area with the best and most affordable foundation repair options. Don’t hesitate, contact us on our website, and we can get your home foundation repair process in motion.