Concrete floors typically crack when the soil support below has been lost. Slabs settle when the soil beneath is compressed, shrinks or is washed away. As concrete slabs settle, they can cause problems elsewhere in the home as walls separate from floors or ceilings. In addition to wall gaps between floors and ceilings, signs of slab settlement can often include cracks appearing at the corners of doorframes.
Options to Avoid
It can be unsettling to see a cracked concrete slab in your home. After all, your home’s entire weight is supported by its foundation, and a cracked floor is a sign that something may be very wrong. You may be tempted to fix the problem by either doing too much or too little by either replacing the entire slab or by simply re-leveling it. Neither option is ideal.
When you replace your slab, the original concrete must first be jackhammered into small pieces and carried out by hand. This is a seriously disruptive and expensive process that requires the removal of all furnishings, floor coverings and interior walls. Then the new slab is poured and allowed to cure for up to two weeks. In addition to the cost and disruption, this approach does nothing to address the reason why the slab sunk in the first place.
Releveling the slab involves pouring a self-leveling grout onto the existing slab. If the surface isn’t prepared perfectly, the grout may fail to bond properly, which can cause chunks to break off over time. In addition, the grout adds significant weight to the slab, which can cause further settlement.
Diagnosing and Fixing the Problem
Instead of simply addressing the symptom — the cracked slab — Foundation Recovery Systems recommends fixing the problem permanently. This can be achieved using either a piering system to stabilize the slab by connecting it to load-bearing soil or bedrock or high-density, lightweight expanding PolyRenewal™ foam to raise settled concrete to its original position:
Our system design specialists are trained to expertly diagnose foundation problems. They use highly specialized equipment that allows them to develop a solution tailored to your home’s unique needs. By the time the inspection is over, you’ll know exactly what caused the problem, exactly what it will take to fix it permanently and exactly how much it will cost to do so.
Once a solution has been customized for your home, we pick a date for the job. At that time, a highly trained crew of technicians will install the solution, leaving your home fixed and protected for future generations — restoring its value, improving your family’s quality of life and giving you lasting peace of mind.