Most of the foundation repairing service companies also conduct the necessary testing, both to identify problems and ensure the after-repair quality of work. However, in some cases, certain companies that only specialize in foundation testing services, and not repair, may exist, and be consulted or retained for the testing portion of any foundation issues. It is not common, as most foundation repair services consider being able to test and identify the problems for themselves is essential to safe and effective foundation repair solutions. Therefore, specialized foundation testing services may work directly with foundation repair service companies to ensure post-repair quality.
FOUNDATION REPAIR SERVICES AND FOUNDATION TESTING SERVICES – COMMON FOUNDATION PROBLEMS
Numerous common foundation problems can develop over time in homes and commercial buildings. Most are not a result of any construction deficiencies (though they can certainly contribute to problems). Instead, processes like soil erosion, settling, seismic activity, and even water damage can lead to foundation problems. When a home or business owner sees cracks in the foundation or walls, bowing or warping of wall surfaces, sinking floors over crawl spaces, or anything else out of the ordinary with a foundation and the supports, it’s time to call on foundation repair services and foundation testing services. These experts can help to diagnose the extent of the foundation problem, its cause, and offer solutions to fix the problem.
The most common types of foundation problems include:
- Cracks in foundation floors (usually cement/concrete)
- Cracks in basement walls
- Bowing or warping of basement walls (outward or inward)
- Settling of foundations resulting in cracks or damaged exterior or interior walls
- Sagging or sinking floors over crawl spaces
- Uneven floors (in the basement slab area or elsewhere)
- Windows and doors no longer can be appropriately opened or closed
- Visible gaps are forming between chimneys and house walls
Almost all these signs are indicative of severe foundation problems that need repair, and over time will get worse. The first step, when any of these symptoms appear, is to have more thorough testing done by foundation repair, testing services to determine the extent of the problem, and the best course of remediation action.
FOUNDATION REPAIR SERVICES AND FOUNDATION TESTING SERVICES – TESTING AND EVALUATION
Testing and evaluation of foundation problems can be a complicated process. To get the picture of what’s going on under your house, as well inside and around it, foundation testing services will use different equipment and metrics to address things like soil density, the angle of the slab, the degree of shift, water flow and damage, and similar. In some cases, they may leave monitoring equipment for days to get a whole picture of what is going on with your property.
Some of the tests may require heavy equipment, including drill-like devices that are used to take soil samples around the outside of the foundation. Others utilize simple devices like levels, tape measures, or more high-tech devices such as laser surveyors and rangefinders.
In general, following a comprehensive array of tests, foundation testing services will then present results, and advise you services that they recommend, either through their associated foundation repairing services or else in a format you can share with any foundation repair services company.
FOUNDATION REPAIR SERVICES AND FOUNDATION TESTING SERVICES – REPAIR TECHNIQUES
Next comes the hard (and potentially expensive) part – the actual foundation repairs themselves. The various foundation repair techniques and approaches that any given foundation repairing services company will use vary based on factors such as the exact nature of the problem(s) you are experiencing, as well as their expertise and professional preference for different materials and techniques. In general, though, common foundation repair techniques that are used to address different foundation problems include:
- Foundation wall stabilization, using reinforcing supports to provide outward pressure to counter the inward bowing effect of foundation walls.
- Foundation wall straightening, where foundation repairing services use anchors and supports (typically adjustable) to slowly move the foundation back into 90 degrees upright vertical position, whether it has tilted inward or outward.
- Foundation settlement repair, which often involves boring holes more in-depth into the soil or bedrock and installing piers or support systems (often adjustable jacks) to return the home or office foundation to level position
- Crawl space repair, which is usually a relatively quick and easy repair for foundation repair services companies, involving removal of rotting structural supports, or adding additional supports in the case where the floor above the crawl space did not have adequate support in the first place. Permanent fixes, as well as adjustable posts, are available in most cases
- Water remediation, when water damage is a primary culprit, there may be additional repair steps undertaken (such as the installation of tile drainage systems and a sump) to discourage water from entering the structure, and allowing for more effective means of removing it when it does penetrate inside
FOUNDATION REPAIR SERVICES AND FOUNDATION TESTING SERVICES – POST-REPAIR TESTING AND MONITORING
After a foundation repair services company end sufficient repairs, either the same company or a third-party foundation testing services company will make additional testing, to ensure that the repairs have stopped the shifting. And settling of the foundation, floors, walls, and similar are now on the level (in the case of adjustable repairs) once again. That helps ensure that the repairs were sufficient and that consumers got their money’s worth, as many of the services from foundation repairing services companies can be quite costly. Though not as expensive as having your entire home rendered uninhabitable, or having your entire foundation replaced, which are beyond the scope of most foundation repairing services companies’ area of expertise and abilities.
Additionally, foundation repair, testing services may recommend either periodic monitoring appointments, or provide you with some home monitoring equipment that can be used to alert homeowners or business owners to shifts or further settling or slippage, bowing walls, etc. These often take the form of small, battery-powered or plug-in devices, that utilize seismic sensors, or in some cases a laser level and reflector, to track the slow movement that can occur over time. It will help provide consumers with a warning or alert if they begin to experience the unwanted movement of their foundation or basement walls more than a certain threshold. The goal is to provide an indication as soon as possible, as foundation problems are far easier to correct in an early stage. For example, it is much easier to install reinforcements on the basement walls when they are 2 degrees off from vertical axis than when they are 10 or more degrees – and by then, the house may be unstable and too far gone to repair. Early detection can help accomplish foundation repairs most effective.
CONCLUSIONS ABOUT FOUNDATION REPAIR AND TESTING SERVICES
In conclusion, it should be clear that foundation repair services and foundation testing services are critical experts to rely on in the event of the foundation, slab, and basement problems. If you notice any of the common symptoms of foundation problems in your house, don’t delay – contact foundation repair services, foundation testing services as soon as possible, to ensure issues are identified, fixed satisfactorily, and monitored. The quicker it happens; the more likely affordable repairs will be possible!