Do concrete slab foundations move? Yes, all foundations will move especially as the sub-grading settles and shifts. However where a little movement is normal and doesn’t pose a major threat to the foundation, in some cases the foundation will move too much. When a foundation moves too much, it will lead to problems and not just to the foundation but for the entire home. For those who notice their foundation has moved and wonder if it has moved too much, Duratech Foundation will share more about foundation movement and when it becomes a problem.
How are Concrete Foundations Made?
Concrete slab foundations are designed and built using steel reinforced concrete. However, the design of these reinforced concrete foundations have changed over the years. Older homes built during the 1950’s through the 1970’s used thinner concrete and have less reinforced steel. These older homes and foundations will be more prone to movement and cracking than modern foundation designs. Modern concrete slab foundations use thicker concrete and more steel reinforcement which helps to prevent foundation movement and other problems. However, concrete slab foundations are not designed to control or resist soil movement but respond to the soil movement and hold together without major cracking. Even modern concrete slab foundations will shift and move with the soil.
Main Cause of Foundation Shifting & Movement
When the soil moves, the foundation will move in response. If there is too much soil movement, the foundation will in turn move too much and it will then develop major problems. Soil movement is often the result of:
• The soil expanding and shrinking as the soil dries out, or in other words drought.
• The soil swells and expands as the result of rain or flood or too much water absorption.
• Poor compaction and settlement of filled dirt.
• Soil and sub-grading is on a hill or major slope.
How Do I Know if My Foundation is Moving?
As the concrete slab moves, it will also cause the structure or your home to move as well. Often when a foundation moves too much, the effects are first noticed inside your home. Too much foundation movement often results in cracks. Crack will form everywhere in the home. You will see cracks in the foundation or floors, going up the inside and outside walls of the home and you’ll even see cracks around doors and windows. The doors and windows of the home may begin to feel stuck or tight and will not work properly. In worst case scenarios, your foundation may have upheaved which is when a mound develops and leads to major cracks. You may even think your home was at the center of an earthquake because of upheaving which will raise the foundation several inches and even feet. When you develop signs of major foundation movement, you will want to seek foundation repair services. A foundation repair contractor will have their inspector come to your home and inspect the foundation. They will look for cracks and other foundation problems. They will often take measurements to determine how the foundation was moved. The inspector will go over their findings and share the condition and possible repair needed for your foundation.
Foundation Repair Services & More in Crosby, Cypress, Friendswood & Greater Houston, Texas
If your foundation has moved or you find you may need foundation repair services, contact Duratech Foundation today.