Problems with a sinking foundation are caused when the soil your home rests on is not stable enough to support the weight of the structure. This results in uneven settlement and sinking, and can have many causes, including:
- Soil incorrectly prepared during construction
- Soil volume loss due to drought
- Clay soil expansion and contraction due to water saturation
- Voids (empty spaces) created by water drainage problems
Signs of a sinking foundation include:
- Sloping or uneven floors
- Cracked or bowed walls
- Gaps between walls and floor/ceiling
- Crooked/sticking doors and windows
- Cracks in foundation (often stair step cracks)
- Cracks in concrete floors (basement, garage)
- Cracks between bricks
- Tilting chimneys
- Water leaking into basement
- Separation of an addition from main structure
It is important to correct foundation problems as soon as possible or they will only get worse, causing increasingly expensive interior damage and lowering your property value.
Sinking Foundation Repair Options
One other option to raising your foundation is to stabilize in place:
The decision is often based on homeowner preference, but our experienced estimator will offer guidance if a particular option is strongly recommended for your home.
Both raising and stabilizing are achieved with compaction grouting. Compaction Grouting is a state-of-the-art, cost effective technique that injects stiff grout into the ground beneath your home. This makes the soil more dense, which increases its ability to support the structure. Compaction grouting has many advantages over conventional pier or piling methods. Most importantly, it solves the problem at the source and prevents it from recurring.
This technique is ideal for repairing cast-in-place concrete and concrete block foundations commonly used in the construction of modern homes. However if you live in an older home, we also have extensive experience repairing stone foundations in historic structures.
Raising A Sinking Foundation
Raising the home often results in structural changes that can impact interior and framing elements such as floors, windows and doors that may have already been repaired to work at the existing (sunken) level. This can also crack newly remodeled finishes such as paint, plaster and drywall.
The need to avoid damage to interior remodeling is a deciding factor for many homeowners when choosing to either raise or stabilize their home. Another important consideration is that stabilizing a foundation is not as costly as raising one.