There has been an upsurge in the purchase of old, rundown properties. This is likely because of the increased popularity of TV shows that feature the transformation of these old homes into dazzling new living spaces to envy. However, these TV shows don’t feature all the problems that go with purchasing and fixing up an old home. Primary among these is dealing with foundation repair.
Foundation issues in older homes
If you’re planning to purchase an old house or have already done so, you should be prepared to invest in intensive foundation repair. This is because construction methods in the past relied on poor construction materials and limited information. The foundations of many of these homes succumb to soil erosion, the growth of tree roots and other soil issues that result in foundation movement.
It’s important for homeowners to be aware of the potential problems that they will face when dealing with an old foundation. These include:
- Uneven floors
The signs that your foundation is uneven are subtle. It is common for the problem to only be detected when it is well developed. You can determine whether a floor is uneven by simply dropping a pen on the floor and seeing whether it will roll in any particular direction.
While an uneven floor may not always be a sign of the presence of a foundation problem, it is an indication of some sort of problem that needs to be addressed.
- Leaking slab
Slab leaks occur beneath or within foundations. These can be as a result of a sewer line or a water line leaking. They can be caused by various slab problems, including foundation shifting or significant settling over time. This puts pressure on the service lines and makes them vulnerable to leaking.
If a slab leak goes unattended, it can result in considerable damage as the water continues to accumulate. It can also cause the growth of mold or mildew, rotting of the structure of the home, as well as soil erosion. Soil erosion is of particular concern as it can cause serious foundation damage and therefore le
ad to structural damage of the home.
- Wall cracks
Many old homes have cracked walls. These are often a sign of foundation settling. You should be especially weary if there are large cracks on the exterior of the walls of the home.
It is important to engage a foundation expert to inspect the old house and help you determine the best solution to preserving it.