There are many problems that result from foundation movement. You’ll need foundation repair for anything from seepage problems to cracks in the walls. Foundation movement is therefore something that shouldn’t be ignored.
In order to solve a problem, you must look to its cause. This is also the case when it comes to foundation movement. In order for foundation repair to be truly effective, you must tackle the underlying cause of the movement and deal with it before repairing the results of the movement.
There are three main causes of foundation movement.
- Structural issues resulting from the construction of the foundation
This is especially applicable for foundations that have mortar joints. These joints are points of weakness in the wall. When pressure is exerted on the wall, these joints crumble and movement is observed. These walls have to be reinforced using steel braces, piers or carbon fiber.
There are also instances when poured concrete walls move. This movement is observed in the formation of cracks. These walls will also require reinforcement.
- The forces of water
Hydrostatic pressure is the force exerted by water. While water may seem like a small force, it is actually one of the most powerful forces of destruction when it comes to foundations.
When it rains heavily or snow melts, the ground becomes oversaturated with water. This results in an increase in hydrostatic pressure acting against the foundation walls, in which causes the movement of the wall inward.
If the oversaturation of the soil is deep i.e. below the foundation, the soil under the foundation will turn to mud. This results in the foundation sinking. If the water in the soil freezes, the foundation can be heaved upward due to the expansion of water to form ice crystals.
If there isn’t enough water in the soil, the soil will shrink away from the foundation. This reduces the support that the foundation has and causes the walls to move outward.
Soil gives support to the foundation. The type of soil and the state of the soil therefore matter a great deal when it comes to the construction of a foundation. Soils that are unstable or expansive such as sand or clay soil are likely to cause movement of the foundation.