When it comes to home maintenance, the foundation is something that often gets overlooked. We give our homes deep cleans, update the floors, appliances, and other deteriorating items as needed, and take care of seasonal chores such as snow removal and mowing the lawn. But have you taken a second to think about the very platform that your home rests on? While there is no regular schedule for how often you should have your foundation inspected, doing so every so often will help you avoid a variety of potential issues with your home. To maintain your foundation, be sure to contact Magnum Piering today. Not only can we assist you with further foundational maintenance tips, we also have a wide range of helical products and other foundational repair resources if you need assistance with a foundation repair project.
Remember, your house is an investment that keeps you and your family safe, making it one you will want to protect. With these seven tips, you can help prevent problems such as foundation cracks, upheaval, deflection, and other problems.
Tip #1: Inspect Your Home’s Foundation for Damage, Cracks, or Insects
It pays off to take a slow stroll around the foundation of your home every couple of months (especially in the summer months) to check for any signs of trouble. Trailing insects can hasten foundation deterioration, making it extremely important to plug up any holes or hairline cracks that you may come across. If you have a pier and beam foundation, be sure to check the crawlspace for any signs of moisture, mildew, and wood rot. If you notice any of these, it is extremely important to contact a foundational repair professional to assist you with solving these problems so you can ensure that your home will remain safe for years to come. It is always best to solve these issues while they are small before they turn into a full-blown disaster.
Tip #2: Maintain a Consistent Moisture Level Around Your Foundation
Avoid costly damages by making sure that the soil around the structure of your home is not exceedingly wet or dry. Because soil tends to expand and contract as moisture levels change, it can take a little work to maintain it. By implementing a water control program, you can help to prevent damages from occurring to your foundation.
During the warm spring and summer months, it is important to water your foundation in order to prevent it from drying and cracking. A simple solution to this is utilizing automatic lawn sprinklers or a hose to keep the dirt around your structure slightly moist. Another great option is to install rock beds about two feet away from your foundation. This will allow some much-needed moisture to seep into the soil that surrounds your foundation and prevent it from cracking that way.
Tip #3: Ensure Your Structure Is Set On a Proper Slope
This is always helpful when it comes to maintaining your foundation. To avoid standing water around the structure of your home, the ground should be on a slight slope so that it can drain away. If this isn’t the case, you will likely want to have a moisture barrier installed about 5-feet deep around your property.
Tip #4: Install a Quality Foundation Drainage System
While some moisture around your home’s foundation is a good thing, this can also turn into a problem if there is too much. As opposed to cracking, the excess water can cause what is called “upheaval,” which is when your foundation rises above its intended position. This is also another reason why it is so important to ensure that your foundation is properly sloped so that water is directed away from your foundation and won’t pool around it. Gutters are another important drainage solution, and it is imperative that they are adequate enough to discharge the large volumes of water that may accumulate during periods of heavy rainfall.
If drainage becomes a problem and water is standing around your foundation, it would be wise to have a surface drain installed, or even a subsurface drain in the event where smaller amounts of moisture become a cause for concern.
Tip #5: Protect Your Foundation From Large Trees
Because trees need moisture in order to survive, roots of large trees will suck the water out of the soil around your home and potentially damage it. This is called “transpiration.” In fact, one sizable tree can remove as much as 150 gallons of water per day from your soil. Crazy, right? This just goes to show how important it is to make sure that trees are an adequate distance from your home (at least 15–30 feet away, depending on the trees). Want more information about protecting the foundation of your home, foundation repair services, or helical product installation? Contact a representative from Magnum Piering to learn more.
Tip #6: Have Annual Plumbing Inspections
One of the biggest causes of foundational issues is plumbing leaks — particularly, under-slab plumbing leaks. These leaks often occur in sewer lines, sprinkler systems, and freshwater lines, but can occur in other parts of your plumbing system as well. If you suspect you may have an issue with your plumbing such as a leak, contact a licensed plumber in your area who can perform hydrostatic testing to detect any potential leaks you may not be able to see.
Tip #7: If You Come Across Foundational Damage, Reach Out to a Professional
Last, but definitely not least — be sure to reach out to a professional foundational repair team as soon as you come across any damage to the structure of your home in order to stop it in its tracks and prevent it from getting any worse. Magnum Piering is your one-stop source for all things foundational repair, and can assist you through every step of the process. From connecting you with an experienced, trained foundational repair team, to ongoing support, and providing the highest-quality helical products on the market, you are sure to find everything you need to keep your home’s foundation strong with Magnum Piering. Give us a call today to learn more.