It is perfectly understandable why a homeowner would want to take an active role in making sure that their home or property’s foundation is in good shape without having to bring in a professional.
While there are a number of ways that you can informally inspect your house and the area around it for any current or arising issues, it is important to note that if you think that there may actually be a foundation problem, at that point it is critical to involve an expert in this field. Until then, here are a few basic inspection techniques to gauge the shape of your concrete and foundation.
Walking the Exterior
This is where you want to observe any issues with excessive cracking, chipping, or crumbling of the concrete under and around the house. While normal cracking is to be expected in certain parts of the structure, it is important to have any serious or larger cracks looked at by a professional. Anything larger than a quarter inch may be cause for concern.
If you aren’t sure, applying some type of waterproof paint over the crack and checking it periodically over a short timeframe to see if it’s cracking can help to tell you whether or not the problem is worsening. You will also want to square up the walls and look for any bulging.
Walking the Interior
You are looking for much of the same thing on the interior of your home as you are on the exterior. Bulging walls are obviously a red flag but you also want to check things such as how the doors and windows open and close, as well as the vents.
You will also need to look for any water damage or mold in the walls, ceiling, or corners and edges of the floor. Your sub-level rooms require attention as well. Excess moisture in crawlspaces or basements can definitely be a sign that there is a problem.
Drainage pipes and other parts of your plumbing system which aren’t working properly will almost certainly lead to foundation concerns if they are left unrepaired for too long of a time. Standing water outside your home can be an indicator that you aren’t getting proper drainage in your yard. That means that there is most likely too much moisture in the soil. This would be a good time to bring out a trained technician for a more official and thorough inspection.
Windows and Doors
In addition to making sure that the doors and windows in your home function properly and are able to be opened and closed with relative ease, it is also important to make sure that they are properly aligned and situated as well. When a home has foundational problems, oftentimes cracks and large gaps may appear in these places. Also when these problems are present, the walls usually show signs of foundation issues by warping or buckling.
We would be glad to help you with any further or more detailed inspections from an experienced professional. Simply give us a call to find out more!