A beautiful dwelling along the river, Kansas City is in a sweet spot of experiencing all four seasons. But when it comes to your foundation, that means there’s more opportunity for damage throughout the year. Together, let’s walk through the most common foundation problems throughout the seasons in Kansas City.
Winter in Kansas City
Though winters in Kansas City have warmed up in recent years, snow is still a reality for Kansas City dwellers. While this might make for an ideal holiday season, it can be detrimental to your basement, foundation, or concrete.
When snow gathers around your home and then melts, it pools around your foundation. The clay-like soil native to Kansas City absorbs the water and expands, setting hydrostatic pressure into effect. Hydrostatic pressure is when soil-saturated water presses against the underground structures of your home, causing bowing, cracking, and leaking of your basement walls or cove joints.
If your basement walls are already bowing or buckling, you’ll need take action as soon as possible. Experts may suggest carbon fiber wall repair or an IntellibraceTM wall repair system to rectify your bowing walls. If you’re simply dealing with leaks, a basement sump pump, basement crack repair, and more basement solutions.
Frozen Discharge Lines
If you have a sump pump, there’s usually a drainage line set up to redirect the water collected in your home. During icy cold weather, it’s common for these discharge lines to freeze. When this happens, the ice buildup in the discharge line will prevent the water from draining. This can burnout and break your sump pump, and even flood your crawl space or basement.
It may be helpful to install FreezeGuard® Discharge Line Protection. The grated adapter provides a way for water to escape even if your discharge line freezes. This can buy you time, and allow you to maintain your sump pump even in the coldest of weather.
Frost Heave Cycle
When ice forms in the soil beneath your home, it can cause soil that is poorly drained to expand and push up against the exterior concrete of your home. Worst case scenario, your concrete will experience severe cracks in the middle.
When this happens, it’s hard to restore your concrete back to its original glory without completely replacing it. However, there are ways to prevent it from worsening, and it all involves proper drainage from the start. Before pouring concrete, you can apply a layer of sand above your soil and just beneath the concrete. This is to help regulate the poorly-drained clay soil native to Kansas City, with sand.
Spring in Kansas City
Spring is Wet Season
Spring in Kansas City just isn’t the same without an abundance of rain. Late spring into early summer has increasingly become Kansas City’s wettest time of year, averaging 44.5 inches of rain which is above the national average of 30.21 inches.
During this time of year, all areas of your foundation are especially vulnerable. Basements may notice an uptick in leaks or condensation. Worst case scenario, you’ll notice your walls bowing due to hydrostatic pressure. For crawl spaces, excess moisture can cause mold and wood rot, warping and breaking down the important structures of your home.
Summer in Kansas City
During the beginning of summer when rain is still present, soil erosion can be a real concern for your foundation. Poor gutters and even flooding can wash out the soil around your home’s foundation and even your concrete driveway, sidewalk, and porch. Even when rain isn’t a concern, Kansas wind is a major factor when it comes to erosion. High, rapid winds can wash away soil and leave your structures vulnerable as well.
When soil erodes or washes out, it can allow for pools of water to form around your foundation and trickle down into your basement. When washed out around or beneath your concrete, it can cause air pockets to form that can fill with water, then crack and leak.
Summer is yet another season where basement waterproofing is essential for your home. Even when the outside elements are harsh and expose your home, vapor barriers and sump pumps can provide the interior protection needed to keep peace of mind in your home.
In the case of a summer drought, or just extremely dry weather, clay Kansas City soil will shrivel and shrink. When this occurs to your soil, your foundation doesn’t have enough steady support to sustain the weight of your home. This can lead to foundation settlement, and despite what you may hear, it’s not always normal. You may begin to notice cracks in your wall, or even on the exterior of your home.
In the case of differential settlement, you’ll notice cracks and uneven floors concentrated around a certain area of your home. This is because one part of your home is settling faster than the rest. Cases like this are common during dry weather.
In the case of differential settlement, or any foundation settlement, foundation piers are a permanent solution that can withstand all Kansas City climate conditions. Depending on your home’s unique build and damage, either either Helical piers (screw-shaped) or push piers (smooth) can be recommended by experts as a custom solution to fix foundation settlement.
Fall in Kansas City
An ideal time for repairs
Most foundation repair work can be done year-round, but autumn is the ideal season to schedule your repairs, if you can.
With the kids away at school, and less hustle and bustle of the warmer months, it may be more convenient for some homeowners when repairs are done in the fall. With milder weather and more freedom to schedule your repairs, you can complete your waterproofing, concrete lifting, or structural repairs just in time for the holidays in the winter.
At Foundation Recovery Systems, giving you peace of mind is our mission, year-round. We understand that every home and every customer is unique; picking the right time to install your repairs is just one part of our fully customizable service package.
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It’s a big decision to address your home’s basement and foundation concerns—one that we take seriously, too. We offer free, whole-home inspections and comprehensive quotes so you can feel confident in choosing us for your basement waterproofing, concrete lifting or slab repair needs.
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