Your home’s foundation serves a very important function, but it can be easy to forget. Unfortunately, Texas is known for its extreme weather, and changing temperatures, water, and soil erosion can cause serious foundation problems that can threaten the integrity of your home.
Damage from Cold Weather
Texas is definitely known for its heat, but that doesn’t mean the San Antonio and Dallas areas don’t occasionally get cold and even experience snowfall. Very cold temperatures can cause foundation issues when there are already gaps or cracks. This is because the dropping temperature causes your concrete foundation to contract. As temperatures rise again, the concrete will expand, making existing cracks larger.
Damage from Intense Heat
The hot temperatures of summer and the drought that comes with it can cause the water in your foundation to evaporate, leading to cracks and even weakening of the concrete. Rising temperatures also causes the soil around your foundation to dry out which makes the foundation settle. This settling into the ground can make your foundation develop cracks or even become uneven.
Foundation Damage from Water
The gaps and cracks created by extreme temperature will cause new problems when the rain comes back. These cracks will allow water to enter your basement or under your home, further weakening your foundation and potentially leading to flooding and water damage. If the soil around your foundation becomes too saturated with water, it will make your foundation settle more as well.
Texas Soil Conditions and Your Foundation
The type of soil around your foundation can have a direct effect on the condition of your foundation and when you will need foundation repair. Many homes in Texas are built on clay material that expands and contracts a great deal with temperature changes. As the soil hydrates and dries out, it contributes to movement of your concrete foundation. During prolonged drought, the soil around your foundation will shrink away.
Addressing Water Problems with French Drains
As bad as drought can be for your home, water is the real culprit of most damage, especially when it makes its way through cracks and gaps in the foundation caused by fluctuating temperatures and soil conditions.
French drains are one solution to keeping water away from your foundation. A French drain is basically a sloped trench filled with a pipe and gravel that diverts water away from the foundation by giving it an easier path downhill. As water flows into the trench, it enters the perforated pipe at the bottom and flows a safe distance from your home. You may need a French drain if you have water getting into your basement or you have surface water, a soggy yard, or a driveway that gets washed out in heavy rain.
Do You Have Foundation Damage?
As a homeowner, it’s important to regularly inspect your foundation and stay on top of any foundation problems with prompt repairs. Make it a habit to check your foundation after intense dry, hot water. You may need foundation repair if you notice:
- A roof that appears to be sagging, which indicates severe foundation problems and shifting
- Doors or windows that seem too tight or are hard to open and close
- Cracks on the walls, ceilings, or stairways in your home, especially the second floor
- Gaps or cracks in your basement floor, interior basement walls, or foundation
- Large cracks in the soil around the exterior of your home
- Gaps around exterior doors and windows
If you notice signs of foundation trouble, stay on top of the problem and contact G.L.Hunt for a free estimate. We offer quality and reliable foundation repairs in San Antonio, Dallas foundation repair, and Fort Worth foundation repair services with a commitment to customer service and a job done right.