Every modern building has a solid foundation on which it is built, and this ranges from large office buildings all the way to the smallest suburban homes. At the start of a construction project, crews will dig the foundation and pour concrete, and a home may benefit from a strong and well-designed foundation. However, sometimes residential foundation repair may be needed if foundation problems arise, and foundation failure may be caused by earthquakes, residential roofs, or simple old age. What is more, some foundations are over a century old and were made with outdated construction methods. To control moisture levels and prevent flooding damage to modern foundations, steps can be taken. Today’s foundation repair experts will know just what to do to prevent flooding damage, and this may affect what sort of foundations was built to start with.
A number of foundation models are used across the United States today for residential foundations, and four in particular are popular and efficient for this work. One type is the slab foundation, which is exactly that: a solid, simple slab of concrete that serves as the home’s foundation, and Texan homes younger than 50 years often use this model. If flooding damage and earthquakes are unlikely to occur, this simple foundation model may prove the best to use.
Another foundation type is the crawlspace, and this gets its name from the open space under the home that people, such as foundation workers, may access. Such a foundation will elevate the home about 18″ off the ground, and not only does this give people room to crawl underneath for repairs and inspections, but the space is protection from flooding damage. During a flood, water may pass right underneath the home, preventing any of it from damaging the house itself. Naturally, such crawlspaces may be the best choice for homes built in areas prone to flooding damage.
Pillar and beam foundations are another popular type, and they involve not only a crawlspace, but also short wooden and concrete pillars that go into the ground to support all this. This foundation type is popular and known for being price-friendly, but it may be badly damaged in the case of an earthquake. A geologist may be consulted before construction to see if this foundation model may be built at the work site.
Basements are the fourth major foundation type, and they are well known for adding a lot of square footage to a home since they form a full-sized living area. In basements, a homeowner will have the room for both storage and living, and basements are resistant to hazards such as fire and earthquakes. However, flooding damage is a real concern for basements, since they have a lot of room and they go far into the ground. Some basements may need foundation experts for repair.
Basements and Flooding Damage
Crawlspaces protect a house from flooding damage and stone slab houses are built where flooding is unlikely, so foundation experts are sometimes called upon to prevent or fix flooding damage in a basement. Very old basements were built with limestone bricks and mortar, and these walls have bulged inwards over time due to pressure of water-heavy soil behind them. These walls can’t be forced back into their original position, but modern concrete walls can be built to contain them and prevent leaks. Bulging walls tend to have cracks that leak water from the soil behind them.
In other cases, flood water or heavy rain outside the home is the main threat, and a foundation may be leaking from the outside. A concerned homeowner may look up local foundation experts and hire a crew to fix this, and they can ensure that no more water may leak into the basement. Plumbers can also install a sump pump at the basement’s lowest point and also put in channels that divert water to those pumps, and draw the water right out of the basement for flood control. Standing water is to be avoided, since it can erode the concrete floor and walls over time and also damage any furniture or stored items in that basement. What is more, standing water may foster mold growth, and no homeowner wants that in their house. Mold can in fact be a health hazard.