Three Practical Guidelines for Preventing the Deterioration of Home Foundations
Home foundations are designed and built to provide long-term structural support after the initial construction. Under ideal circumstances, the base of your building will remain strong for countless years without significant degradation. Unfortunately, the foundation can experience premature deterioration due to unfavourable conditions such as soil shrinkage, drought, poor drainage and bad soil conditions. Therefore, you should be diligent in maintaining and protecting your house structure to prevent the consequences of the degradation. Here are some guidelines to help you promote the longevity and improved performance of your home foundation.
Plan for Efficient Drainage
You should not allow standing water to accumulate at the base of your building. In general, foundations are made using concrete and similar materials which are porous. Therefore, if the moisture content around the foundation walls and slabs rises, absorption will occur. Over time, the absorbed water will cause the deterioration of the structure. You should plan for long-term efficient drainage around your home. You can grade your land such that stormwater does not accumulate around your perimeter. Also, you can include some drain channels or in-ground drain points to minimise pooling in flat terrain. Additionally, you should ensure that your downspouts and gutters direct rainwater away from your house.
Check the Landscaping Trees
You should inspect the condition of your landscaping trees and ensure that they will not cause harm to your building. This practice is critical if you have some large trees relatively close to your house. Typically, if large trees near your structure are not examined and controlled, they will cause cracking and failure of your foundation. In simple terms, the roots of trees tend to search for moisture. If there is not ready water around your home, they will be attracted to moisture around your house. The absorption of water by the tree could dehydrate the surrounding soil and the slabs. Also, the roots might penetrate the foundation walls. Therefore, you should provide sufficient water to your plants or consider removal.
Monitor the Cracks
Finally, you should monitor the cracks which might indicate the deterioration of the foundation. If your building's base is under stress and losing its structural integrity, there will be cracks in the walls of your home. If you notice a crack, you should measure it and take note of the position. Then, you should periodically examine the status of the cracked area. If the damage is expanding, you should consult a contractor experienced in foundation work for further examination and repairs.