Foundation repair: Your questions answered

If you’ve ever wondered what it might take to have your home’s foundation repaired, whether you should have it repaired, or any other questions about your foundation, here are your answers.

home foundation repair

How much does foundation repair cost?
That’s a difficult question to answer; there’s no one set fee for foundation repair homeowners. Not only does the cost vary geographically and by contractor, the cost of a foundation repair job depends on various factors that determine the extent of the damage and the amount of difficulty involved in accessing the problem areas.

How will my foundation be fixed?
That depends on the kind of damage involved. If your concrete slab foundation has cracked or shifted, contractors will probably be stabilized through a process called mud jacking. Steel piers are installed underneath the concrete slab, allowing the slab to be connected to soil that is better able to bear the heavy load of the foundation and everything it supports.

Who should I call for foundation repair services?
Always call a foundation repair specialist to fix your foundation. If your home is older and/or the damage is extensive, it may be necessary to replace certain sections of the foundation. That’s a big job and it takes someone with extensive knowledge and experience in the process to do it properly.

A retaining wall seems to have shifted. What can be done to fix it?
In some cases, all that is required is to remove some of the dirt behind the wall and then to pull the retaining wall back into its original, proper alignment. In others, drain lines may need to be installed in order to prevent water from building up behind the wall, which could have been the cause of the shift in the first place. To pull back the wall, anchors are screwed into the soil which are then pulled deeper into the soil by special helical plates welded to pier shafts under more stable soil can be reached. Then, a bracket is attached to the end of the pier and the wall is jacket back to its original place. Then, the wall is permanently affixed to the bracket.

Can’t I just repair my foundation myself?
In some cases, yes. Minor foundation cracks can effectively be fixed by a savvy homeowner. If, however, the crack is more extensive (in excess of about ¼”) it’s wise to get help from a specialist. If you do repair the crack yourself and the crack reappears, that’s a sign of a bigger issue that should be addressed by an expert.

My contractor mentioned “pile driving”. What is that?
“Piles” are the tubes that are driven into the soil to stabilize your foundation. The process of pile driving is used to help the soil support a structure (such as a house) when the soil is not adequately able to do it on its own.

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