Understanding Basement Wall Crack Repair
A crack in the wall is not only unsightly, but it can be concerning. What does it mean for your home? For your foundation? However, cracks in the wall are common in basements. You will want to know exactly how the problem is affecting your home. If you’ve recently had a heavy impact along that wall, the crack could come from that. More often than not, though, it’s something else.
It’s Not Your Wall — It’s Your Foundation
Most of the time, an unexpected crack in the basement wall comes not because of a problem with the wall so much as the foundation. When the foundation settles or rises, it puts pressure on the wall that can cause cracks. This stress could continue to your windows and doors, as well as lead to cracks in floors or ceiling or issues of sagging floors.
If there’s a chance that the basement wall crack is due to a foundation problem, make sure that you don’t just patch up the crack and leave it at that. If you fail to repair the foundation as well, issues with basement wall cracks will only worsen over time.
Types of Basement Wall Cracks
There are two main types of basement wall cracks, and both have different causes and degrees of seriousness.
Horizontal basement wall cracks are typically caused by external pressure. If the foundational soil has expanded and pushed against the house, horizontal cracks can appear. If you have a tree or a large shrub too near the foundation of the home, it could be the roots of that plant pushing against the home, as well. Often if your roof gutters are faulty or are non-existent, the result could lead to soil expansion and basement wall cracks. Hydroplastic pressure is another potential issue. Of the two, horizontal basement wall cracks are the most urgent and should be repaired as soon as possible. If you see a horizontal basement wall crack, contact a professional to repair it immediately.
Vertical basement wall cracks are caused by the foundation settling, on the other hand, which typically happens when the soil is too dry and brittle. This is common in older houses that tend to settle over time. However, that does not mean that vertical cracks are no cause for concern or that a settling foundation is no cause for concern. If left alone, both the settling and the vertical crack can become exacerbated. It’s still a good idea to contact a professional as soon as you notice this problem.
Basement Wall Crack Repair
Basement walls are typically made with concrete, so sealing cracks can be difficult to do. First, we’ll perform a full inspection of the crack and the basement to verify that the problem is a foundational one. Once that’s done, the crack can be sealed. At Childers Brothers, we use epoxy crack repair because of its heavy duty adhesive. This adhesive is designed specifically for materials like concrete. In fact, it’s often shown to be even stronger than the concrete itself. When you repair basement wall cracks with epoxy crack repair, it will not only seal the crack but strengthen the walls to prevent further cracks in the future.
Of course, fixing the crack in the wall and leaving it at that is useless if the problem is your foundation. That’s why when we repair the basement wall crack, we also address the foundation issues. If your foundation has settled, helical pier installation can help to raise it and strengthen it so it stays up. If your foundation is being upheaved, soil stabilization may be the way to go. It may be that the basement walls themselves need to be stabilized in order to protect your foundation. Whatever the cause might be, we’ll help to find the best solution so your basement will be fortified for years and decades to come.
Have a crack in your basement wall that needs to be repaired? Don’t forget to take a look at the foundation to see if that’s where the problem truly lies. Whatever the problem, Childers Brothers, Inc. is qualified and willing to help. Contact us today for more information or to get started with a 27-point analysis of your foundation and any issues that could be causing your basement wall cracks.