Catch foundation problems early and save money

Water damage and soil erosion are the main culprits of foundation cracks, usually caused by climate changes, downspouts not extended away from the home properly, or overflowing gutters. Left unchecked, a settling foundation could lead to thousands of dollars in damage.

Foundation issues don’t just plague older homes. In fact, many newer homes are affected, often because the builder neglected to create a positive slope for drainage to go away from the home.

We asked highly rated foundation repair companies for advice on catching foundation problems early.

When problems arise, there are two common solutions for foundation repair:

  1. A piering system is one in which steel rods are inserted under the foundation and stabilize (and in some cases lift) the foundation.
  2. A more economical solution is underpinning or mudjacking, in which concrete is injected under the slab to stabilize it, however, mudjacking is often only a temporary fix and is more for garage floors or sidewalks that might sink.

Tips to avoid foundation damage

  • Keep gutters clear of debris and make sure downspouts are properly extended at least 10 feet away from the home.
  • Water the ground around your home during droughts.
  • Inspect your home annually and look for signs of foundation damage, like cracks in walls, around windows and doors, or on your home’s exterior; soil eroding away from the home; moisture in crawlspaces, attics and basements; uneven flooring or misaligned doors and windows.
  • Address any concerns immediately. The longer the problem lingers, the more it costs. The average price of steel piering is about $1,000 for every 5 feet of damage, meaning it could end up being the most expensive repair you’ll ever make to your home.
  • If you have foundation damage, before you have any work done, get estimates from at least three different companies and ask for references. Foundation repair companies do not require licensing and are not regulated, so it’s important to find one established with solid references from prior customers. 
  • Ask for insurance and bonding information, and certification documentation from the piering manufacturer. If you’re hearing mixed advice from foundation repair contractors, bring in an independent structural engineer to assess the problem before you have it repaired.


Soil erosion is mostly the number one cause of the damage of every foundation. We should maintain foundation repair to make our foundations strong enough to stand soil erosion.

the main reasons for a settling foundation is when the hole was dug it was probably done incorrectly. it is important not to disturb the soil in which your footings and concrete walls are sitting. Usually when problems like this happen or soil conditions are poor to begin with, that is the time to take a step back and correct the problem. By using 2-3 inch stone dropped in place you will have a 98% compaction area in which to put your footing. this will also help with hyrdostaqtic pressure after the house is built. we offer materials that can be attached to the foundation wall which will also help. installing an interior drain system will help keep the soil dry which in turn will help keep the foundation stable. if you suspect you are in a wet area when building the house this can be done to compliment your exterior drain system prior to pouring the cellar floor. this will save you thousands, if you need to do it later. if you have to have your house piered than you will have a wet cellar. how much fun is that. moisture is a major long term issue. deal with the water issue first. back to noticing the problem when your digging the hole you should inlarge your footing depth and witdh. put rows of steel in both the footing and the walls. this will help everything to settle together. if not it will still be tired together. epoxy filler are very strong and help stablize and bond the walls back together. preventative and don't cut corners. you'll pay alot less dealing with the problem as soon as it's noticed

The #1 reason for foundation failure is building codes ,that allow construction on poorly drained and unstable soil. Before construction begins contractors should be required to put in proper drainage and piers to stabilize the foundations and greatly reduce any future problems. Instead they just through up these houses almost overnight. I guarantee my work. They should guarantee their foundations. Form a group in your area. Get together with other home owners lobby you city and change the building codes.

I live in Texas, we had a very hot summer with no rain and I have noticed the ground around my home has dried and there is a gap between the grass and house. I was advised to use a soaker hose. Before I do anything I have been researching this. any suggestions from someone "in the know" would be greatly appreciated.

a friend of mine use to work at a foundation repair company and she said that the experts told her that when you put a soaker hose around your house to be sure it's 6" away from the foundation because if you put it right up against the concrete it will cause more erosion...just thought I'd share that with everyone.

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