Houston Foundation Repair Solutions
Houston Foundation Repair Solutions
There are various types of Houston foundation repair, each of which might be suitable for solving different problems.
Signs That Might Indicate a Need for Houston Foundation Repair
Different types of foundations can display different signs that something is wrong. Many people know enough to request an inspection of the foundation when they initially purchase a home, but then they fail to continue these inspections. Property owners can do their own inspections if they know what to look for. However, a foundation inspection by an expert is a fairly low-cost investment in keeping a building safe and usable.
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One sign of a problem with the foundation that is fairly easy to spot is a floor that is not level. Because not everyone will be able to notice that a floor is not level, there are some simple cues to look out for that indicate this. They are:
-Doors that previously worked fine sticking, jamming, or not latching
-Windows that previously worked refusing to open or close properly
-Vinyl or tile laid over concrete floors displaying cracks
-Cracks showing up in the walls or ceiling
All of these signs of potential foundation issues can also be caused by other problems. However, they can be good cues that it might be time to take a closer look at the foundation. Houston foundation repair is typically both easier and cheaper when it involves minor problems that were caught quickly.
Causes of Problems Needing Houston Foundation Repair
In the Texas area, one of the major issues is the clay soil. Clay soil absorbs large amounts of water when it is available but shrinks considerably when the weather is dry. Since Texas is often dry but does experience rain relatively regularly, the clay soil is one of the main contributors to foundation issues.
In new homes, a relatively common problem that may require Houston foundation repair is a contractor’s failure to compact the soil properly. This can stress the foundation and cause damage. Most of these problems occur during the first five years after a house has been built.
Houston Foundation Repair Solutions You Can Count On
Older homes are prone to problems caused by simple time decay. This can be things like the actual concrete of the slab breaking down, but more often the problem involves other components of the home. Moisture is a major cause of concrete foundation damage and older homes may have pipes that are wearing out and leaking.
Problems That Houston Foundation Repair Can Address
Foundations can experience damage in a number of different ways. There are also a number of different types of foundations that require different repairs. Houston foundation repair can be performed in a similarly large number of ways in order to address individual problems associated with individual buildings.
There are four major types of foundations. A basement is one type of foundation, which is not very common in Texas. A crawl space is another, and a concrete slab foundation is the third type. Pier and beam foundations are the last common option.
Homes built with crawl spaces are on raised foundations with space to crawl under the home and access pipes or other items. Concrete slabs are laid directly into the ground and then built on top of. Pier and beam foundations involve piers of concrete, metal or wood that are driven into the ground far enough to be stable, across which beams are laid to support the home.
Depending on the type of foundation, the actual support for the home might be concrete, as with a concrete slab, or wood, as with some pier and beam foundations. Common problems are associated with each of these types of foundations that are not as likely or not possible with the other options. For example, concrete won’t rot, but in the wrong circumstances, wood can and will.
The most common problem with concrete in any part of the foundation is cracking. This is because concrete is very strong but somewhat brittle and responds to stress by cracking. The stress can be uneven soil compaction under the home, moisture, or even rusting of the rebar inside the concrete.
Beams and piers are common in certain types of foundation construction. If the beams are properly centered over piers that are completely upright, the structure is usually very strong. However, if any part of the system is compromised, either by the material being damaged or the angles being off, the entire setup loses strength. Shifting earth may sometimes cause beams and piers to wind up out of alignment, something that requires Houston foundation repair.
Types of Houston Foundation Repair
There are many types of Houston foundation repair. Only an experienced foundation repair expert can determine which choice is best for any particular home or building, and in order to do so, he or she needs to actually lay eyes on the problem. However, there are several types of repairs that are more common than the rest.
Concrete piers and steel pressed pilings are some of the most common options. The former requires drilling down through the foundation and then pouring concrete that sets into a pier. The depth of drilling is determined by the soil type and other considerations, but is often nine to twelve feet.
Steel pressed pilings are put into place using a hydraulic press. The physics of the setup means that the pilings gain additional strength as the soil compacts around them during the first month or so. Steel pressed pilings are a common option because they are effective but take only a few days to install.
Other repairs can be customized to the problem. If concrete near the exterior of the foundation is cracking due to the rebar it contains rusting, it can be chipped away and the rebar cleaned and coated with a protective substance. New concrete is then pressed into shape. Most problems are relatively common and there is a standard solution, but Houston foundation repair experts can get creative when necessary, too.
Houston Foundation Repair for Commercial Buildings
Most information available online discusses foundations for homes. However, commercial buildings require strong foundations as well. Because these buildings are often larger and heavier than single-family homes, it can be even more likely that they will require Houston foundation repair. Regular inspection helps ensure that any problems are caught early.
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