Wedge Crack at Corner of Foundation
A Quick Explanation Of Wedge Cracks in The Amarillo, TX Area
Because of the nature of concrete, as it hardens and cures, it shrinks and cracks.
This is why all aged concrete will experience cracks.
An unfortunate reality of living in our area of Texas, however, are foundation wedge cracks. The vast majority of slab-on-ground properties in our part of the country develop them. In the industry, we also call these types of cracks ‘corner pops’ but ultimately they’re what happens when a lower-quality construction company makes mistakes.
For homeowners who discover wedge cracks on their property, the next question is usually,
“How badly is this going to negatively impact my foundation’s integrity?”
The good news is that it most likely won’t.
But that being said, bugs and termites will find them and use them as a convenient doorway into your home.
What Causes Wedge Cracks?
To be more specific, they are the result of varying expansion rates between your concrete and brick mortar. Because of the difference in pressure meeting at the corner, it weakens the area and a crack is forced to compensate. The corner simply gives out.
Polyethylene plastic (contractors use different materials), acts as a flashing to direct water away from the interior. Also, it also acts as an isolation membrane between the two materials.
To make it really simple to understand, just think back to the last time you wrapped a present with wrapping paper. Where do the tears almost always happen? Not around the sides. They’re at the folds and corners.
But, if you cut the paper absolutely perfectly, so they meet at the corner and fold flat, rather than being too big or long and being crudely folded, the corners and the gift look perfect.
The difference here is that you don’t want the concrete and mortar to touch because our clay-based soil (along with substantial temp swings from time to time) will cause wedge cracks.
What Do We Do To Fix Wedge Cracks?
Because they almost never pose a threat to your underlying foundation, they aren’t considered Foundation Repair Projects. Wedge cracks are an issue with concrete. The #1 thing to do in most cases is to seal the crack and ensure that it’s sealed thoroughly all the way down to the bottom of your foundation.
What if the soil is disturbed? Replace it, and then ensure it’s properly compacted.
What if the crack is so serious that it will no longer support your brick veneer? This would mean some concrete work and repairing the corner area (for example, if the concrete wedge has become so loose that it falls off).
Have More Questions Or Concerns? Call Childers Brothers
If you live basically anywhere within 300 miles of Amarillo, Texas, Childers Brothers is the local foundation company you can trust. We’ve been around for close to a half-century now, and our reputation among homeowners speaks volumes. We’ll give it to you straight through a Pinpoint Analysis, and take great care of you.
Don’t procrastinate with concrete or foundation issues, Contact Us, and we’ll be happy to schedule a visit from one of our specialists.