If you are reading this, you’ve probably noticed signs of foundation settling around your house. You may see interior cracks in the sheetrock or molding. Maybe you notice unlevel flooring or jammed windows and doors. If so, STOP! Do yourself a favor and read the following tips before you call a foundation repair company!
3 Tips Every Homeowner Should Read Before Calling a Foundation Repair Company
Expansive clay soils are common in North Texas and can pose a significant threat to both concrete slab and pier and beam foundations. As a result, foundation repair is a billion-dollar industry in Texas. While it may be tempting to get a “free estimate” from a foundation repair company, you may want to read the following tips before you agree to anything.
TIP #1 – DON’T PANIC
In Texas, foundation repair is as common as a tick on a hound dog! Even if your house has foundation problems, it’s probably not as bad as you think. We’ve been in the business for over twenty years and we’ve seen a few things!
TIP #2 – TAKE NOTES
Are you starting to notice common signs of foundation damage in or around your home? If so, take pictures with your phone to document each area of concern. Use a tape measure or ruler to measure cracks in interior or exterior walls. Don’t forget to record the date each time you add or update an item on your list. Keeping detailed notes establishes a timeline and may help identify patterns. For example, if the kitchen window jams every winter it’s probably safe to assume that the issue is related to seasonal moisture fluctuations – which leads us to tip number three.
TIP #3 – FOUNDATION REPAIR IS AVOIDABLE
During the summer, the combination of intense heat and lack of rainfall causes the clay soil beneath our homes to shrink. During the fall, cooler temperatures and increased precipitation cause the clay soil to expand. The constant shrinking and swelling can wreak havoc on your home’s foundation. The only way to protect your foundation from damage is to prevent the expansion and contraction of clay soils by eliminating moisture fluctuations.
Remember, the key to avoiding future foundation repair AND maintaining existing foundation repair work is proper moisture balance.
In Texas, we can barely predict the weather – much less control it. With that being said, the best way to mitigate damage caused by seasonal moisture fluctuations is by installing a custom foundation watering system. Foundation watering systems are installed along the perimeter of the home beneath the soil surface. They can be added to your existing irrigation system and are typically installed in conjunction with a Wifi smart irrigation controller so you can effortlessly preserve your home’s foundation.
What’s the difference between a foundation watering system and a soaker hose?
While it is possible to water your foundation using a soaker hose, foundation watering systems are tailored to fit your property’s needs and designed to deliver moisture with scientific precision.
Does one side of your property receive more direct sunlight?
Do you have a tree in the yard that zaps moisture from the surrounding soil?
No problem. With a foundation watering system, each zone can be customized to ensure moisture balance across your property.
TIP #4 – DON’T PUT A BANDAID ON A BROKEN LEG
Sometimes foundation repair is like putting a (very expensive) bandaid on a broken leg. Other times, it’s completely unnecessary. Can you imagine paying thousands of dollars to repair your home’s foundation only to have the same problem 5 years later? It happens ALL THE TIME.
The number one reason why foundation repair can fail is that many foundation repair companies neglect to identify what caused the settling in the first place.
If a foundation repair company convinces you to spend tens of thousands of dollars installing piers without addressing drainage concerns or balancing the soil moisture levels – you are throwing your money down the drain.
TIP #5 – GET AN UNBIASED FOUNDATION INSPECTION
Some foundation repair companies will try to sell you piers before you’ve exhausted all of your other options. The simple fact is that only a Licensed Professional Engineer has the knowledge and expertise to give an accurate evaluation of your home’s foundation. When you hire an independent Licensed Professional Engineer for a foundation inspection, you will receive an UNBIASED, certified Engineer’s Report. The Engineer’s Report will highlight any areas of concern and recommend specific foundation repair methods – if necessary. You can then use your certified Engineer’s Report to obtain quotes from several foundation repair companies.
For the price of 1 to 2 foundation piers, we can give you peace of mind in knowing that work performed (or not performed) is justified and correct.
Call 817-576-1973 or fill out the form below to schedule a Dallas Fort Worth foundation inspection with a Licensed Professional Engineer.