4 Ways Water Can Damage the Foundation of Your Home and How to Prevent It

home foundationWater can damage a home’s foundation in several ways. The foundation forms the structural underpinning for the entire house. Foundation damage from water may proceed silently and may be in an advanced state before it’s discovered. Or it may manifest as acute water damage to the interior of the home.

How Water Can Damage Home Foundation

  • Water-saturated soil around the house – Loosely packed soil adjacent to the foundation may absorb a large volume of water. The continuous presence of water leaches into the foundation and may penetrate the basement. Make sure gutters and downspouts are functional. Also, landscape should be graded to divert water away from the foundation. Indoors, a basement sump pump provides protection against acute inundation.
  • Structural cracks from water damage – Silent water intrusion may remove supporting soil beneath the foundation footings and slab. Loss of support causes the foundation to settle and crack, as well as cracks and other defects in walls upstairs. Subterranean drains can remove water from adjacent soil and prevent foundation damage. In addition, a sump basin and pump can relieve water pressure below the slab.
  • Soil expansion and contraction – Soil surrounding the foundation may alternate between water-soaked and dry.  Expansion from water produces positive pressure against the foundation and may cause deformation or cracking, as well as water infiltration through the concrete. Dry soil contraction removes support and may allow the foundation to settle and crack.
  • Moist foundations damage wood structural components – Moisture from ground water permeating the crawl space warps and rots wood members and promotes mold growth. Closing the crawl space and sealing it from ground and outdoor moisture sources, as well as installing a dehumidifier, will reduce moisture damage.

For more information on how water can damage home foundation, contact Rytech.

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