One of the biggest fears of any homeowner is problems with their foundation. Cracks can almost cause a panic for many people in San Antonio, but do all cracks warrant that reaction? The fact is, not all cracks are a concern. True, some might mean that you need cracked foundation repair, but some may be mostly benign. In fact, it’s quite common for new homes to have some cracking on the foundation and on the floor slab. Slab repairs and other fixes may be necessary, but they may not be. Here’s how you can tell if a crack is nothing to worry about, or if it needs cracked foundation repair.
How Do You Know if You Need Cracked Foundation Repair?
You can have any type of crack. It might be vertical, it might be horizontal, or it might even look like a step. There are also cracks along walls and in the slab. One of the best indicators is if you can fit a dime into the crack. If you can, then call a professional to have it checked out. Another potentially tell-tale sign is a step crack. These are the cracks that run between bricks that look like steps from a stair. They can allow water to get into the slab and wreak havoc. If you have cracks in your cinder blocks then those can also be a red flag. In any of these cases, call a professional right away.
Any cracks in the slab that get longer and wider as time goes on are bad. As they expand, the slab may become uneven and may potentially collapse. If this is the case, you may require slab repairs, such as mudjacking. This technique involves drilling several holes into the damaged part of the slab, and then essentially injecting concrete in until the slab is even. If you need to add support to the home, then mudjacking will not be adequate. A more extensive cracked foundation repair will be required.
If you have horizontal cracks in your foundation, there are certain things to look for to see if they might be serious. These types of cracks can indicate that the structural integrity of the building might be threatened. This is usually because of rapid cooling and warming of the soil, or from rainwater that has collected against the foundation. This water can place pressure on the foundation, causing it to weaken and crack. The water will then seep into the slab.
Vertical cracks that run top to bottom of a wall are sometimes an indicator that there is damage to the footing of the foundation. If this is the case, then it could require extensive repairs that involve digging all the way down to the footing and fixing the problem at the source. The tell-tale sign for this is 2 cracks on adjacent walls. If there is only one crack, then it could have been caused by the concrete shrinking when the wall is curing.
That said, your best option is always to contact a professional to check out any cracks. Even if they are not serious, then at least you will have the peace of mind to know that an expert has inspected it. Slab repairs can be expensive and stressful, so you certainly do not want to take a chance. It is always best to trust a professional to decide if you need cracked foundation repair.