Unless your house or building was constructed in the past 10 years chances are you do not have an adequate
The condition of your property’s foundation is the most important thing when it comes to structural integrity. With time, cracks, fissures and even block separation can appear, sometimes visible on your interior basement foundation walls, sometimes the only thing that points to a cracked foundation is a wet basement.
If you don’t have a waterproofed basement then chances are that water from the outside of your property is finding its way into your basement through the cracks. Basement waterproofing can protect and reinforce the integrity of your foundation but also, if a crack occurs, the waterproofing membranes will still keep water from seeping through.
But how do foundation cracks form and what causes them?
Here are the major causes of foundation cracks:
Water is the biggest risk to your foundation and in Toronto and the GTA we experience a lot of rain and snow, weather wise. Also, a lot of areas in the GTA are low laying areas, below the water table, which makes them prone to flooding. In either case there two main water pressures to your foundation. Hydrostatic pressure, coming upwards and lateral pressure which puts pressure and your foundation walls. When the soil gets saturated with water it expands and in turn the pressure against your structure increases. This soil pressure is what can cause cracks to your foundation.
Poor Foundation Compaction
At the time of construction it is very important that the foundation concrete was laid professionally and reinforced properly and that the soil around it was compacted. In the case your foundation was not build properly then there is a risk of your structure settling or shifting and that puts pressure to your structure and leads to foundation cracks or even block separation.
Quality and Type of Soil
Expansive soils and clay soils tend to absorb water, and expand, but also shrink when dehydrated. These dramatic changes to the soil’s mass can cause your foundation to settle and in turn create cracks.
Deep tree roots can be very invasive and put pressure on your foundation. If you have big trees in your property then know that roots can grow as far away as the height of the tree. If trees are too close to your structure then their roots can contribute to hairline cracks.
This is usually overlooked as a cause to foundation problem, but after this very hot summer in Ontario, it is something to consider. You wouldn’t guess that lack of water and moisture in the soil can be a problem but when moisture dries the soil shrinks, leaving gaps between the soil and foundation. That can cause the foundation to move and eventually crack.
If you have visible foundation cracks or a wet basement then give Interhome Waterproofing a call. We offer a free on-site assessment where we can investigate where the water is coming through and offer you basement waterproofing solutions to repair cracks and strengthen your foundation’s structural integrity. Contact us at: 416-836-5253