Foundation settling can result in major damage and even your house collapsing if you don’t address the issue quickly. While all homes settle throughout its lifespan, if a home is built improperly or on unsteady soil, settling can really negatively affect the home and lead to serious problems. Luckily, there are several different routes you can explore to fix your settlement problems.
What is Foundation Settlement?
There are many reasons for foundation settlement and many different ways to diagnose it. The major cause for this is poor soil conditions at the home site. If the soil wasn’t compacted well before the home was built, voids will form in the soil and cause the foundation to sink into it. The soil can lose moisture over the years and shrink resulting in looser pockets to support the foundation. Going through extreme weather conditions can also impact foundation settlement. If a house experiences heavy rain and water then suddenly goes through a patch of dry and hot weather, this can result in the drying of the soil surrounding the house. With this being a big impact on the foundation, it is important to keep an eye on soil expansion which can lead to this settlement. This condition can affect about one-fourth of houses in the United States. Poor construction and materials can also be a cause, but that is a less common issue.
Signs of Foundation Settlement
There are several telltale signs that your home is undergoing some sort of settling. It is important to react quickly as you can correct the problem with professional help. If you see any of these signs and decide to wait, your foundation may progressively get worse as time passes.
- Are your windows or doors not opening or closing like they did when new?
This could be a clear indicator that your foundation is in the process of shifting and moving. As the foundation moves, your frames can move with them and become distorted making closing or opening windows and doors difficult.
- Are there cracks forming on your foundation walls?
Cracks forming on foundation walls are usually the easiest sign to see that your foundation is shifting. Cracks in a forty-five degree angle can be a pretty clear notification that you may have to address foundation problems. If a crack is less than one-fourth inch, it most likely just needs to be sealed to avoid water leakage.
- Can you visibly see parts of your home sinking?
Visibly seeing your home sinking is an obvious clue to foundation problems. Another indicator can be searching around the top of your house.
- Are there cracks on the corners of door and window frames?
Finding cracks right above your window frames is a great way of discovering potential damage as well.
- Is your drywall cracking?
Drywall cracking is a sign that your home’s foundation is settling. When a foundation settles, it brings the frame of the home with it, moving it off square. This can cause drywall cracking on ceilings and walls.
- Is there water present in your basement?
Water in your basement can indicate that there is moisture leaking through cracks usually caused by hydrostatic pressure.
- Are there bricks or blocks that are off centered?
Using a laser line, do the mortar joints look off? If so, this could be a sign that shifting is occurring.
- Are your floors uneven?
Floors that are slanted can be caused by many factors including sagging beams or supports. However, it could also be a sign of foundation problems. If you are experiencing this, it would be best to have a professional inspect the flooring as soon as possible.
If you end up discovering one or more of these signs, it might be time to consult with an expert. Our trained professionals are on hand to access any damages and to give their opinion on the best solution moving forward.
How to resolve foundation settlement
There are plenty of options to choose from when it comes to resolving foundation settlement issues. One is foundation piering. Piering can help by raising and supporting the sinking foundation. Trained professionals would come in and dig up the soil surrounding and underneath the home. Afterwards, supports would be added, either pushed or screwed into the bedrock or more supportive soil below to provide and distribute the weight of the foundation, creating a more stable result. There are also temporary fixes such as filling in any cracks that are present. However, the cracks can continue to worsen and expand over time so it is recommended to fix the foundation issues instead. Carbon fiber reinforcement straps can also be used to remedy the bowing of your walls. This is the recommended option as it requires little maintenance, can be finished within a day, and is a low cost project. Although this solution may seem fairly easy, it is still advised to allow professionals like The Real Seal handle application and installation of the straps.
Real Solutions; The Real Seal
Have a question about your home foundation or see signs of potential damages occurring? When it comes to fixing major foundation settling problems, nobody provides better solutions than The Real Seal. One of our trained professionals will evaluate any damages that may be present and provide available options that would be best to resolve the problem. For smaller cracks, it may best to ensure that you keep an eye out on if they widen over time or other cracks begin to form. If you’re experiencing some of these symptoms, you should give us a call and we can figure out the problem and let you know how we can fix it. Don’t ignore the problem and have it get worse over time. Early treatment will prevent major issues from forming. Save money and potentially your house by giving us a call and letting us help correct your settled foundation today!
At The Real Seal, LLC, we are dedicated to ensuring your home’s foundation is able to stand the test of time. For more information about the various types of foundation repair services we offer, call us at (847) 756-7987.
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"Though it's not an option, I would give Real Seal 4.5 stars. Overall they did an excellent job installing a drain tile system in my leaky basement. The work appears to be well done, their crew worked efficiently, cleaned up after themselves and provided a reasonable price (relative to their major competitors). The deduction is for a mistake they made in locating the pit: they and I both mistook an oil line for a water line to which they planned to connect the sump pump discharge. But the solution they improvised - running the discharge line through the wall and into the sewer along with the gutter downspout (I'll try to post pic) - appears to work great. Most importantly, the owner, Austin, provided awesome customer service throughout. I'm sure Real Seal had to incur some unanticipated costs as a result of that misunderstanding but Austin demonstrated that his top priority is customer satisfaction. I'll let you know if I'm not still satisfied after some heavy rains. I'd definitely recommend The Real Seal." -Marcos F.
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"These guys ROCK! Talk about doing a great job. I found them on YouTube completely on accident by watching their "how to" video. These guys make it look easy. It's not easy at all. I will definitely be back for any future work I need done. Professional and informative is how I would describe them. Plus, they cleaned up after themselves. Two thumbs up!" - Kamila L.
"With all of the shady contractors I've come across it's important to point out an affordable and professional service and this is one of them. We had some seepage in a section of our basement for awhile and had an estimate done by a company quite awhile ago. They told us that in order to fix the problem the neighbor's sidewalk in between the houses would have to be ripped up (yes you read that right). Recently I was searching for another estimate and was fortunate enough to come across The Real Seal. The leak was found at the time of the estimate and within a week or so these guys came out and it hasn't leaked since. Great service and great people!" - Patricia G.
"A+ company. Ben is great, explains things well, responds to phone calls, patient. One of the few companies out there that actually does what they say they will do. Workers came exactly on time or early. Got drain tiles, indoor. Very professional all the way through. They had to come, back a few weeks later to add to the job, did not charge me. When obtaining estimates for the job, they were very reasonably priced. Also, 2 contractors providing estimates on my subsequent remodel asked me who did my drain tiles. They both said it was a very good job. Also lifetime warranty. Over a month, big rains and no more water. Thanks for a job well done guys." - Rand H.
"I totally recommend The Real Seal! Joel was on time, very polite and found the problem within a short time (turns out, the foundation is fine). Very honest, competent service." - Simone G.
"All three cracks still sealed perfectly - no water in the basement since having them fixed. Nice!" - Q.C.
"The Real Seal came out and gave me a quote on repairing a chronic leak due to how the foundation was cut for the i-beams. The quote was timely and professional, and the rep was able to answer all my questions. The rep was able to quote, discuss, and electronically schedule my appointment based on the team's availability on the spot. We arranged for the work to be done while we were out of town, and even though the first snow/ice storm had reared it's ugly head they had no problem doing the dig, repair, and clean-up. They even honored my request for pictures of the repair for my later reference, and provided multiple pictures showing every step of the process. While I was tempted to DIY this repair - and probably could have - I feel it was well worth the bit extra to have them do it AND provide the lifetime (TRANSFERABLE) warranty. We've had quite a bit of water since this repair and while I still check every time..not a drop has appeared since." - Joe C.
"Ben was professional, polite, gave a detailed quote, and explained the work they would be doing to fix two foundation cracks in our basement. They were on time and finished the job in about 4 hours. The final bill was a bit less than quoted, so we were doubly happy!" - Anita S.
"Was recommended Real Seal by a friend. I was actually looking at one of the bigger well known companies. Glad i had Real Seal come out an give a free estimate. A few days later the technician came out and plugged the crack in less than an hour..." - Robert W.
"Austin did an excellent job of evaluating the damage. Price was right on the money. George did a great job of fixing the crack." - Robert P.
"Great service, very attentive and knowledgeable staff, fast and reliable. When we got our estimate, the guy could have tried to sell me a drain tile system, which was way more expensive than just having the crawl lined. But instead he explained that his inspection of our moisture issues showed we didn't need that. Really appreciate that he didn't try to sell me something I didn't need just make some extra $. Also really appreciated he explained the options in detail. We ended up spending less than half of what other companies quoted us. When we finally got the crawl lined a couple weeks later, were very happy with the results. Would recommend this company to anyone who is having moisture issues." - Iris H.
"Had a crack in the basement. Had two other companies come out and they gave us ridiculous estimates, saying all sorts of additional work needed to be done. The Real Seal was the third company I called. They sent someone out in two hours to give an estimate. Quoted me a very fair price to just fix the one crack that was giving us the problem. The next day they sent someone out and the crack was filled in about an hour. Haven't had a leaking issue since. Two thumbs up for these guys. No monkey business, no upselling." - Peter K.
"Fantastic experience all around. Joel was able to come out on short notice, and he arrived promptly. He surveyed our situation and, though he probably could have told me I needed a thousand dollars worth of repairs, he told me there really was no problem. That kind of honesty was much appreciated, and I'll definitely go with this company if I ever need foundation work in the future." - Brian M.
Real Seal estimator was prompt, courteous, and knowledgeable. The technician resealed an old crack sealed in the past. He chipped out the old patchwork, and spaced the injection ports closely. He used epoxy. Great price, ifetime, transferrable warranty. Professional people, great value.James S.
We had several quotes and they were little more expensive. I went with this company because I found them on Angie's List and they offered a lifetime guarantee. And it is transferable to the next owner.Leslie W.
Their work was excellent! Great attitude by all of the workers and Austin & Ben were very knowledgeable and kept me informed as to all they were doing. Their price was very fair and it was nice to feel that I could trust them. They covered all the details and cleaned up everything.Murray S.
I had been having water leakage problems into my lower level family room for quite some time. Real Seal correctly diagnosed the problem, quoted a reasonable price, showed up to perform the work per agreed upon date and fixed it permanently. Even with the wet spring this year, I have not had any further water leakage problem. I highly recommend this company.Joseph P.
They were fast & efficient. Worked quickly and took care of everything including a total cleanup. Their price was also the best of the 4 estimates. It's been 2 months since they did the job and there's been enough rain to see that everything will stay dry.Murray S.
These guys ROCK! Talk about doing a great job. I found them on YouTube completely on accident by watching their "how to" video. These guys make it look easy. It's not easy at all. I will definitely be back for any future work I need done. Professional and informative is how I would describe them. Plus, they cleaned up after themselves. Two thumbs up!Kamila T.
real seal gave us a very competitive bid; thousands $$ less than our other bids. arrived on time and did a very good job sealing every crack in our basement. its been a few months now and no water so far. i would use real seal again without hesitation.Inna T.
“Real Seal is great! Austin explained everything to me in a way that made sense. They installed new window wells, drains, a pump, drain tile and a basement wall cover. My basement is now dry! Thank you Real Seal!”Lily U.
“I had a number of cracks in my small crawl space. Two cracks were old filled cracks and the rest were new cracks. One crack had water seeping through. They sealed and re-sealed all the cracks. Everything looks great. Service was prompt. Everyone in the company was pleasant.”Beth H.