If the weather takes a turn or your grading turns on you, you may find yourself dealing with a damaged foundation. What, though, does repairing your foundation involve, and what problems are you most likely to run into as a homeowner? More importantly, what kind of budget do you need to have in place to work with the professionals in your area?
What Cracks Tend To Appear In A Home’s Foundation?
Your foundation, like you, can succumb to stress if it is exposed to enough over an extended period of time. When your foundation does eventually cave, it will show its strain by cracking. These cracks are among the most common type of foundation damage you’ll have to deal with as a homeowner. That said, which cracks should you be on the lookout for?
Some of the most common foundation cracks include:
- Vertical cracks: Vertical cracks tend to form in homes with struggling structural supports. If you notice a vertical crack in your foundation, it’s possible that moisture may have gotten to your support beams or that the folks who first built your home may have invested in inappropriate materials for your foundation.
- Horizontal cracks: Hydrostatic pressure can cause horizontal cracks to appear in your foundation. These cracks are the result of extreme stress and your concrete’s natural drive to expand and contract in response to changes in the weather. As noted, though, these cracks tend to appear more frequently in concrete and brick foundations than they do in foundations made of alternative materials.
- Diagonal cracks: Diagonal cracks form for much the same reason horizontal cracks do. However, these cracks tend to be larger on one side than the other. This difference in size can be attributed to uneven sinkage throughout your foundation.
- Stair-step cracks: Brick foundations tend to crack along their mortar lines, resulting in the classic stair-step pattern that contractors can readily identify as a sign of further damage.
Repairing these cracks will depend on their location and severity. Some of the permanent solutions local contractors may use to repair and protect your foundation walls include wall anchors, adjustable support beams, and carbon fiber wall supports. The cost will vary greatly, again depending on the severity of the damage. But you should expect to spend $700-$1,500 per support.
When Does A Crack Become A Leak?
Unfortunately, you’re not always going to be able to catch a foundation crack before it worsens. If these cracks do have time to get worse, you may find yourself dealing with a foundation leak. Leaks add moisture to the air in your basement and can damage your pipes if you don’t act quickly enough. As such, you’re going to want to reach out to a Kansas City, MO, contractor as soon as you suspect something may be wrong. The contractor will then be able to inspect your home and propose a tentative leak plug. Some of the most common waterproofing solutions and leak services a foundation repair contractor will offer include:
Again, the cost of these repairs will vary based on the size and age of your home as well as the severity of the leak, among other factors. To give you an idea, interior drainage can cost $850 for a small area and up to $9,000 or more for the entire basement, and a sump pump may be around $500 if you already have a pit, and up to $3,000 or more, depending on the features, brand, and discharge line.
What To Do If Your Foundation Starts To Sink
Foundation cracks may be among the most common types of damage to befall your foundation, but they’re not the only problems you may come across. If the soil around your home is unstable or your foundation’s been poorly graded, you may notice it start to sink.
If you do suspect that your foundation’s beginning to slip away from its original position, you’ll want a contractor’s professional opinion on how to respond. The most common repair designed to keep your foundation from sinking involves piering. There are various types of piers available to permanently stabilize your foundation including push piers, helical piers, and slab piers. The type of pier used on your home will depend on the type of foundation you have and the extent of the existing damage from settlement .A foundation stabilization project with piers can cost $1,000-$3,000+ per pier, with costs varying to match the severity of your home’s sinkage. You may be able to get your insurance provider involved. Different companies allow for unique coverage, so be sure to check through your policy before balking at the cost of repairs. Many contractors also offer various payment and financing plans you can take advantage of.
Foundation Repair Options
It’s not as simple as you might think to set up a foundation repair budget. Most repair costs will vary on a case-by-case basis. These repairs, however, are rarely inexpensive. If that’s the case, though, wouldn’t it be easier for you to DIY a solution on your own dime?
More often than not, no. DIY-ing a solution to a foundation crack or slippage will often make the problem you’re dealing with worse. When you do eventually call in a professional, the project could take longer and potentially cost more because any DIY solutions will have to be removed before others are installed.
When in doubt, then, reach out to Kansas City’s professional foundation repair contractors. These contractors will be able to offer you a free inspection and estimate on potential services before they implement any permanent repairs.