The Difference Between Foundation Settling and Foundation Problems
Foundation settling is the term that describes the natural and gradual changes that take place in a foundation. The two most common causes of foundational settling are soil and weather conditions. Depending on the composition of the soil and the area’s climate, over time, a new home will gradually sink a few inches into the ground. A few inches of settlement should be no cause for worry, as long as it is evenly distributed across the structure. Settlement often takes place in two stages: the initial settlement and the ongoing settlement. The initial stages of settlement typically occur during the first few years of a foundation. The ongoing settlement stage is easier to handle and control as it can be monitored.
Common Signs of Foundation Problems
Extreme or chronic foundation settling often leads to foundational instability that can compromise the structural integrity of the entire home. While it can be difficult for homeowners to determine whether their foundation is unstable, here are a few common problem signs to look for:
- Cracks in sheetrock, brick, walls, floor, or tile
- Cracks in the foundation
- Sloping or unlevel floors
- Water leakage at wall bases
- Doors and windows that stick, are misaligned, have uneven trim or molding, or have gaps around them
- Cracks in cement walls in the basement
- A gap at the bottom of the garage door.
These problems may start small but can become more severe as the foundation continues to sink.
If you suspect that your foundation is unstable, it’s always advisable to reach out to foundation repair professionals, like the team here at Engineered Solutions of Georgia. Backed by more than 15 years of industry experience, we offer free consultations that include foundation reports, cost analyses, as well as recommendations about the most cost-effective and appropriate repair method for your foundation.