Footing Failure Causes

Footing Failure Causes:

Footing failure is the reason homes start to settle. Why do footings fail? I can assure you that I have seen every type of footing holding up a home or building. We have raised and stabilized homes with block 4ft tall crawl space foundation walls that have settled due to a footing that is narrow and thin. Once the King Piers Team digs down to the footing we see footings that lack in size and strength. Once the Perfectly dug square 3ft x 3ft hole beneath the footing is finished, our load-bearing steel plates are placed on top of 3ft of high strength concrete that is poured the day before. I engineered the King Piers Foundation Pier System to stand the test of time and Mother Nature. I have installed thousands of King Piers throughout the Midwest during rainy and drought-type weather. It doesn’t matter what extreme weather King Pier is just too much steel-encased around 5ft 7inches of high-strength concrete to ever fail.  The King Piers track record speaks for itself.

Here are the top 6 issues that we see:

1. Poor Drainage

Some examples of poor drainage include short downspouts, clogged gutters, or lack of waterproofing.

Poor drainage conditions around your foundation can cause the oversaturation of the soil which causes instability around the foundation.

2. Weather Conditions

Hot and dry conditions may cause the soil around your home to shrink and pull away from the foundation. When this happens, cracks may appear throughout the structure. The shrinking soil will create gaps next to the foundation which allows the foundation to sink and settle into the ground.

3. Poor Soil Conditions

Poor soil, organic components, debris, etc., may cause expansion or consolidation, which contribute to foundation failures.

4. Transpiration

Tree roots could dehydrate the soil beneath a home causing soil shrinkage and settlement of the home. Maturing trees and bushes close to a home or building is a common cause of foundation settlement. As the trees and bushes mature, their root system demands more water. These roots will draw the moisture from beneath a home’s foundation and cause the soil to shrink. This results in the settlement of the home.

drainage5. Plumbing Leaks

Water from leaky plumbing is often a major contributor to foundation problems. When excess water is present due to plumbing leaks, the soil supporting your foundation can erode. When a plumbing leak occurs under the foundation, the moisture content becomes distorted. When moisture is added to the soil because of a plumbing leak, the soil and foundation will move, causing foundation settlement. The degree of movement depends on the soil type, soil density, soil moisture content prior to the leak, and the length of time over which the leak has occurred.

6. Poor Building Site & Ground Preparation

Cut and fill situations, where the soil is removed from part of the lot and stacked on another, must have proper soil stabilization before the structure is constructed. Otherwise, unexpected movements of the soil beneath the foundation may occur.

If the builder failed to prepare the soil before your home’s foundation was poured, it can cause foundation settlement. Loose, not properly compacted soil starts to compact on its own, and then the foundation starts to settle into the ground.

Soft, low-density soils and improperly compacted soil beneath a foundation are one of the leading causes of foundation failure. The grading of the soil should always divert water away from your home so that the water is not allowed to seep under the foundation.

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Kansas City Foundation Repair