How to Identify Structural Foundation Cracks

Here is a quick guide to help you tell the difference between surface and structural cracks, and what you should do about them.

Because the foundation is the most important structural component of your house, it’s understandable to have concerns if you spot some cracks in it. Fortunately, many foundation cracks are either harmless or simple to repair. However, you don’t want to make the mistake of overlooking a structural issue in your foundation. Here is a quick guide to help you tell the difference between surface and structural cracks, and what you should do about them.

Types of Cracks

When you are looking for cracks in your foundation, you could encounter one of two main categories. First are the small, non-structural cracks that can be cosmetic or have negligible damage. If the crack is less than ⅛ inch wide, then it’s probably nothing to worry about. But anything wider could pose a problem. Structural cracks are those that cause damage to the structural integrity of the foundation. Most of them come in very noticeable shapes. The cracks are typically horizontal, diagonal, or happen in a zigzagging stair-step pattern. Also, structural cracks are commonly symmetrical because a weak point in one part of the structure will contribute to weakness on the other side.

Underlying Problems

There are many things that cause cracks in a house’s foundation. Natural shrinkage of the concrete, as well as settling, can create small cracks. Also, cracks tend to start at places where plumbing and other hardware were drilled in. You should check the area around your water heater because the moisture and varying temperatures can encourage cracks to spread. Another cause of cracks could be an uneven grading on your property.

How to Fix It

For smaller cracks, it’s best to seal them to prevent them from spreading. An epoxy injection into the cracks will not only seal them, but it will create a waterproof barrier. For larger cracks, they might need concrete patching and more. When you find any cracks that you think need to be repaired, then you should call a waterproofing expert for an inspection. They’ll be able to tell you how serious your foundation cracks are and what it will take to remedy them.

Contact All Aspects Waterproofing Today for Your Waterproofing Needs

Whether you need a new sump pump installed or want to waterproof your entire basement, contact All Aspect Waterproofing, a Better Business Bureau A+ rated company with over 30 years of experience in the Washington, DC./Maryland/Virginia area. We have a great deal of experience in waterproofing, mold testing, and mold remediation, and we want to make you feel at home again. Contact us online or by calling 1-866-999-3110 or 301-766-4420. To see what we’re up to, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, LinkedIn, and Houzz.

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