8 signs home's foundation is in trouble

8 signs home's foundation is in trouble

Danny Manley, owner of Aquaproof Inc. in Mason, Ohio advises homeowners with foundation problems to hire an engineer. "When everybody's saying something different, get an engineer. He's going to be giving his opinion based on his expertise, not selling you on a system," he says.

Signs of foundation trouble

Inside:

  1. Misaligned or sticking doors or windows
  2. Cracks in drywall or basement walls
  3. Bulged or bowing walls
  4. Leaks in walls, especially basements
  5. Sloping floor

Outside:

  1. Gaps around windows or doors
  2. Cracks in brick or foundation
  3. Leaning or rotating outbuilding walls

Experts say most major foundation repairs can be avoided by paying attention to two things: good gutters and proactive maintenance. "The biggest thing is gutters and downspouts," says John Boiman, president of Jack Boimon Sons & Daughters Inc. in Cleves, Ohio. "Everybody should check them at least three to four times a year to make sure they're operating correctly and not collecting runoff at the foundation."

Soil oversaturated by poor drainage around or under the foundation may eventually wash away, exposing the foundation to water intrusion or causing it to settle and crack. Manley says even minor cracks are cause for concern. "The [foundation] damage doesn't happen overnight," he says. "It might take 20 years to happen, but it could have been prevented."


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Foundation specialists help you identify problems

Foundation specialist gives tips on what you can do to identify foundation problems in your home, and whether it's time to call in a professional.

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Kathy W.

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Having bought a house with major hidden foundation problems, I would add to look at crown molding and other trim and misaligned built in cabinet doors. If you are in St. Louis, the very best company to help you deal with these major problems is Helitech.

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