Foundation wall cracks are incredibly common in homes that have basements. When left unaddressed, today’s tiny crack can (and often does) morph into tomorrow’s yawning chasm that then leads to bowed, sagging, leaning and separating foundation walls, pooled moisture and a severely compromised basement space.
The good news here is that you have affordable options to fix cracks in your foundation walls. In this post, learn six reasons why you really want to fix that small crack now before it gets worse!
Why Foundation Walls Form Cracks
What causes cracks to form in your home’s foundation walls? Cracks can actually form for a variety of reasons, but most reasons boil down to uneven pressure combined with inadequate support.
Basement walls face a set of challenges different from those of above-ground home or workplace walls. Because basement walls are surrounded on the outside by soil rather than open air, the pressures they must combat can change quite suddenly.
A single heavy rainfall or a forgotten garden hose left running can create intense hydrostatic pressure as trapped moisture presses against the exterior wall looking for a way out.
As well, over time, changing soil composition, a rising water table, uneven landscape grading or failing drains, window wells and gutters can increase that hydrostatic pressure, forcing basement walls to do even more heavy lifting to hold their place.
As the years go by and the walls themselves begin to degrade, fissures and cracks can form. As these widen, especially along seams and joints, the walls will begin to bow, sag or lean in ways that place pressure on the entire structure.
6 Reasons to Fix Foundation Wall Cracks Without Delay
These are just six of the many reasons you may want to give us a call to get a free, no-obligation inspection and EasyQuote estimate.
1. Cracks mean leaks
Most foundation wall cracks begin as fissures so small it is difficult to see them without a microscope. What widens them over time is the continual hydrostatic pressure and influx of small amounts of moisture.
Concrete is a naturally porous building material that begins to shift and settle organically even as it dries. But the continual pressure of water on these initial micro-fissures inevitably widens them into cracks, which can then become internal basement leaks.
Leaks may initially produce small amounts of humidity or efflorescence (that powdery white residue left behind when water dries and is reduced to mineral salts). But all that can change when severe weather hits or your aging sump pump conks out.
2. Cracks invite mould
For many homeowners, all it takes is mention of one dreaded word, “mould,” to prompt an inquiry about a foundation wall crack repair estimate.
Mould is typically more prevalent in basements than above the ground because conditions are naturally moister, darker and more humid – just the type of atmosphere mould and mildew like most.
Since mould and mildew spores can colonize micro-cracks and often form new colonies behind the scenes in wood or drywall, by the time you discover you have a problem, it may be major rather than minor.
3. Cracks invite visitors
For other homeowners, even the threat of mould may not be sufficient to prompt immediate action to repair foundation wall cracks.
But all that changes at their first sight of a four, six or eight-legged visitor.
To you, wall cracks are problems brewing. But to many inhabitants of this world we share, wall cracks are like welcome signs – opportunity knocking with a deal too good to pass up.
Birds, rodents, flying or crawling insects, snakes and other wild visitors are all too happy to take up residence in handy fissures and cracks, moving deeper inside as cracks widen, until they join you in your home!
4. Cracks won’t fix themselves
A basement wall crack is not going to resolve on its own. It is not always necessary to repair a developing basement crack immediately, especially if it isn’t in the current budget. But it is smart to at least get the crack inspected and have an estimate of repair costs to use for future repair planning.
5. Cracks can lead to structural issues
Cracks can form pretty much anywhere along your basement walls, but some of the more common places include along the outlines of cinder blocks, along wall and floor seams, around windows and doors, and at the seam between wall and ceiling.
Unaddressed cracks can cause walls to bow, sag, slope or even pull away from the rest of the structure.
6. Today’s cracks are less expensive than tomorrow’s wider cracks
We have yet to meet a homeowner who is excited to dig into their home maintenance budget to repair basement wall cracks.
But there can be some satisfaction, at least, in knowing that the cracks you fix today will always cost less than the cracks you neglect that become bigger and more expensive tomorrow.
Get in Touch
Have you noticed warning signs of basement moisture or basement leaks? Do you see small basement wall cracks forming and are you not sure how worried you should be?
We can help. Best of all, we can help for FREE – we never charge to come out and do a full inspection and leave you with a written repair estimate quote.
Contact us online or give us a call at 1-866-875-6664.