4 Things to Look for When Inspecting the Foundation of Your Home

Properties usually undergo a professional inspection before the day of purchase. However, while touring properties, there are a number of areas that you can evaluate, which may provide a clue to the home’s foundation integrity. Finding damage before making the purchase saves thousands of dollars in future repair bills. When needing help with foundation problems, contact Oklahoma City Foundation Repair or someone like this in your local area.

Interior Clues

There are a number of tell-tale signs that home interiors exhibit if the foundation has problems. Look for cracks in the walls over doorways and windows. Cracks over doorways may also accompany doors that are hard to open, or will not close properly. Try opening windows that have cracks over the frame. These windows may not open or close without a struggle. Also check for cracks in the areas where the walls meet the ceiling. If a floor has ceramic tile or stone flooring, look for cracks in the tile.

Basements and Crawl Spaces

Supporting posts beneath the house should stand straight between the ground and the floor joists. There should be no standing moisture at the base of the posts. Poke close to the bottom of wooden posts to determine rot from moisture. Moisture found in crawl spaces suggests drainage problems around the perimeter of the home. Any soil around the home should have a gradual slope of around six inches for every 10 feet away from the structure.

Exterior Linear View

While walking around the outside of the property, look down the length of the home, along the foundation, at each corner of the home. You should see a straight line. Bulges or divots in block or poured concrete foundations may indicate a serious shift. Assess whether or not the foundation walls lean inward or outward. Any shift in this area may mean that soil expansion and contraction put undue pressure on the foundation, which requires intervention.

Evaluating Foundation Cracks

Block or concrete foundations typically have a few cracks from shrinkage. Hairline cracks often appear along the foundation as it travels down the slope of a hill. Cracks resembling stair steps along masonry joints present a possible problem. These abnormalities remain especially concerning if the wall has a bulge or the crack measures more than ¼ inch in width. In this case, the wall often requires professional steel bracing. Horizontal cracks along the foundation also pose a problem, as moist soil more than likely froze, expanded, and put excessive pressure on the foundation, causing breakage. This scenario may present a very costly dilemma that may include an entirely new foundation.

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