Foundation damage is often a devastating and financially troublesome issue that any homeowner can face. Problems with a home's foundation are almost always expensive, but severe repairs can hurt anyone. For this reason, it's crucial to ensure that you prevent problems where possible and correctly repair them when they do occur.
Although home foundations can suffer damage from many sources, water is a common culprit. Poor drainage or improper installation can cause a foundation to shift, but leaky sewer pipes can also lead to excessive amounts of water beneath the slab. Here is what you should know:
Before: The Impact of Plumbing on Your Foundation
Foundation damage typically results from shifting soil near your home. As the ground moves, your home's foundation experiences stresses beyond its original design parameters. This movement can cause portions of the foundation to shift or settle, creating cracks that can allow water in and ultimately impact the structural integrity of your home.
In addition to changing soil conditions, plumbing problems can lead directly to severe foundation damage. If your sewer pipes run below your foundation, a leak can allow water to move soil that supports your entire home. In these cases, it won't be long before the lack of support begins to cause cracks or other issues.
The earlier you can catch these problems, the less costly they will be to fix. If you notice sticking doors, sagging floors, or the sudden appearance of cracks, then it's crucial to have your foundation evaluated as soon as possible. Foundation repair contractors can recognize the signs of a failing foundation and help you to repair the underlying cause.
After: Repairing and Testing
Once they've identified the problem, a foundation repair expert can help you determine the best course of action. Contractors can typically repair minor damage with sealants and patches, but more severe issues will require raising the foundation with jacks or piers.
However, your concerns with your home's plumbing won't end once you've finished your repairs. After fixing your foundation, you'll need to conduct a hydrostatic sewer test check for additional leaks. An ongoing sewage leak can ruin a repair, so this step is crucial. Additionally, you'll need to evaluate your home's interior plumbing. Even relatively small amounts of movement in your foundation can jostle pipes and create leaks.
Faulty plumbing can be both the cause and the result of foundation damage. Conducting a proper repair always means checking your plumbing before and after to both locate the underlying cause and fix any new issues. Working with an experienced foundation contractor is the best way to ensure a permanent and complete repair. Contact a foundation repair service for more information.