Foundation Repair Manchester
The Lutheran White Oak has been a proud symbol of Manchester for over 300 years. It many ways, it’s an appropriate symbol. Manchester has a long lived history in Maryland, and despite its small size enjoys all the charm of a typical American main street town while still playing host to many facilities like Christmas Tree Park, Westside Memorial Park, and Pine Valley Park. It’s the kind of town that doesn’t make the news very often, and that’s because it’s been blessed with a safe, uneventful environment without crime or high stakes drama. It’s a place for families to live, learn and grow up together.
But even a safe, supportive environment like Manchester isn’t perfect. There are problems that, with enough time, can put residents at risk and cause some expensive problems, but no one really thinks about them. Fortunately, some experts do, like the teams that specialize in foundation repair in Manchester.
Your Foundation & You
Your foundation functions as a platform. Dirt is soft and malleable, it can move and shift and for an entire home to sit on it means, inevitably, that parts of the home will move. A foundation, when properly built, negates this effect. In most modern homes, the foundation is the basement, a slab of concrete on which walls and other pillars evenly distribute the weight of the building that is constructed upon it. A foundation that works as intended keeps a home immobile, stable and safe for years, and is designed to be the “invisible” support that no one thinks about or notices.
It’s when the foundation doesn’t function as intended that problems can arise. In some cases, this may be an unfortunate result of poor workmanship when a home was being built. In other cases, the work quality has nothing to do with problems at all, and it is changes in the environment, erosion in the soil and other factors extremely difficult to account for that are the root of the problem. No one can predict heavier than normal rainfall, unseasonably severe winters, or a shift in the forces of erosion that affect soil several feet underground, but all of these factors can affect a home, and when they do, foundation repair in Manchester should be the first thing you consider.
How Your Foundation Is Affected
Excepting more dramatic events like earthquakes, the damage a foundation incurs is difficult for many people to detect because it’s so slow. Foundations normally don’t just crack, they are subjected to physical forces for years, with defects and faults forming deep inside before gradually spreading to the surface.
A good example of this glacially slow process is a phenomenon known as “frost heaving.” In this instance, Manchester’s cold, snowy winters play a perfect accomplice. As water drains into the soil, and temperatures drop below the freezing point, that water mixed through the different soil layers will freeze. When the water freezes, it expands, an effect anyone who has ever filled ice cube trays to top can see. Ice cubes will actually sit above the tray because of the expansion of ice. Soil does the same thing when water freezes inside it, only in this case, that soil puts pressure on a foundation from all directions and actually lifts or “heaves” it up. When spring and warmer weather arrives, ice in the soil melts and foundation sinks back down. Over the course of years of being lifted and dropped like this, the foundation’s position may shift, unbalancing the distribution of forces it is holding up.
Another example of slow acting damage is water. Large amounts of water penetrating your basement can start to collect there. If your basement is finished, this can damage the drywall, carpeting or any electronics you may have in the area. More seriously, it can be a breeding ground for mold that can cause very serious health problems for residents, especially those with respiratory problems. This type of issue should always be immediately addressed with foundation repair in Manchester both for health, safety and retaining the value of a home.
Fixing The Problems – Foundation Repair in Manchester, MD
Foundation repair in Manchester can take many forms, it all depends on the type of situation that is causing the problem and, perhaps more importantly, the extent to which the problem has been allowed to persist. Fixing problems before they have a chance to take hold is much cheaper than coming to a home where decades of neglect have allowed the foundation problems to threaten the structural integrity of the entire building.
It all starts with an assessment from experts at foundation repair in Manchester. An experienced team like AA Action Waterproofing can look at your foundation from the inside, the outside and any relevant crawlspaces so they can understand where the problems are, and, more importantly determine what is causing those problems in the first place.
From there, the issues can be addressed. Cracks in the foundation that may be due to simple aging can be repaired with hydraulic cement. Other problems may be more severe, such as the entire house at a slight tilt because part of the foundation is no longer resting on dirt, which may have shifted or eroded away over the years. In these instances a technique called “mudjacking” can be used, which injects concrete under the foundation to give it something to sit on, once again restoring it to its proper angle and correctly balancing out the distribution of forces throughout the structure.
These kinds of solutions aren’t going to be easily discerned or executed through a quick DIY fix. If you have any concerns, call an expert in foundation repair in Manchester, like AA Action Waterproofing. We’re more than happy to see how we can help you today.