What are the best ways to prevent foundation wall cracks around your home?
This is worth careful consideration because cracks, larger and small, are a common reason homeowners call us for assistance. Plus, they may start small, but ultimately erode into a much greater problem if you ignore them.
Here’s what you should know about foundation wall cracks and how to avoid them in Kansas City.
The Most Effective Way to Prevent Foundation Wall Cracks
The bad news is that there is not a fool-proof way to eliminate residential wall cracks for existing homes. Cracks are very abundant around Kansas City because of soil content and all the shifting, expansion, and contraction.
Perhaps the best way to prevent wall cracks would be to build a new house and take extreme caution laying the foundation during its construction. You would have to avoid the foundation being placed against the soil itself. Since most of us don’t wish to build a new home, this isn’t very practical.
When KC Pier has to work on a home with severe wall cracks, requiring us to excavate all around it, we’ll remove the soil outside the wall. After that, we replace everything with a compression barrier of gravel to re-stabilize the foundation. Even new home builders don’t like to do this because it’s cost prohibitive, but we see custom builders do this sometimes.
Practical Ways to Prevent Foundation Wall Cracks
So, it’s difficult to completely avoid wall cracking. You can, however, perform some common sense measures to make sure runoff water doesn’t pressurize and deteriorate your foundation wall. This involves things like gutter/downspout positioning, where you would make sure the water pours out at least 10 feet from the home.
Then, you can focus on soil grading to alleviate problems. Make sure you have a “positive” grade that allows the water to flow away from the house. You can’t always create a water-free environment, but you can manage it to stop the clay in the soil from getting wet and expanding.
Once you develop a problem with wall cracks, it can manifest itself as structural and/or waterproofing issues, but there are ways to resolve these deficiencies. At KC Pier, we have solutions if you call us for an inspection.
One of our guys will visit your home and determine the history (cause) of the cracks, and propose a few solutions. The severity of the cracks, whether wide or narrow, is what dictates the various solution possibilities. If we catch the problem sooner, we’ll have more opportunities to try cost-effective solutions.
Don’t Delay Dealing with Wall Cracks
It’s never a great idea to delay repairs on foundation wall cracks. Although you don’t have to panic when you notice a small crack (since almost every home has them), it merits getting an inspection. All homeowners should consider getting one periodically.
If you wait too long to take action when wall cracks worsen, you’ll end up dealing with greater moisture issues all over the place. This means more leaks, greater risk for mold overgrowth, damaged equipment (in finished basements, especially), and other headaches. So, like we always say, it costs you nothing but a brief 30 or 45 minutes to have a trained foundation contractor investigate the severity of foundation wall cracks.
KC Pier: At Your Service for Foundation Repair in Kansas & Missouri
KC Pier has licensing and insurance to perform virtually any manner of residential foundation repair in either Kansas or Missouri. Our service can help you whether you have wall cracks, bowing walls, sump pump issues, poor drainage, or would like to enhance your basement with egress windows. We do all those tasks with plenty of solid service warranty coverage.
Contact KC Pier today for a free inspection or to learn other ways to prevent foundation wall cracks around your home.