4 Popular Questions about Foundations and Basements

It might seem like the simplest answer is to put off what looks like a little problem if you have a question about your foundation or basement. However, homeowners who usually do this are in for a huge trouble.  

Foundations 

We find the almost every homeowner who puts off foundation repairs do so because they do not know enough about what is going on. They are not sure what’s the problem cause and they do not know how to repair it.  

Here are answers to questions a homeowner often ask about how to deal with their foundations. 

  • How could I avoid a water issue? 

This is maybe the greatest question you could ask, especially if you live in a location prone to spring flooding. Though a lot of homeowners do not want to think about waterproofing until after their home has experienced flooding, experts think it is better to avoid water damage from happening in the first place.  

Waterproofing ahead of time makes sure that your home will be safe from damage if you are asking this question. Though your neighbors are concerned about flooding, you will have a better peace of mind and know that your house would maintain its value.  

Avoiding a water problem begins with finding high-quality products for the job. Have them installed by a professional who knows waterproofing. 

  • How do I select a foundation contractor? 

Do some good research. That is the short answer. Look for highly rated companies online and look over information from the Better Business Bureau. Also, checking out several photos of the products in action won’t harm you. Know the specifics on products, who installs them and how they are installed. You need a professional that is trustworthy and knows what to utilize and what to do to get the work properly completed. Your job is only to pick a company. 

  • How do I know if I have a foundation issue? 

Luckily, it is simpler than you may think to examine a foundation issue. The simplest way to know for sure is to find cracks in the walls, both in the basement and upstairs. Cracks upstairs, together with hard-to-open doors and windows, frequently mean your foundation is settling. Cracks downstairs can show settling, or they can signal basement walls that are bowing inward or crumbling.  

These are severe issues. Though they are frequently diagnosed by a homeowner, these conditions are not ones that would be simple to repair by yourself. You will want to contact a professional with knowledge of structural issues and how to fix them to preserve the structural integrity of your house.  

  • Would it not be simpler to fix it myself? 

Well, not really. There are a lot of DIY solutions to foundation problems. However, almost every foundation problem is a lot more complicated. The best way to ensure your foundation issue is properly addressed is to call in an expert.  

Today, contacting a professional is not hard, especially that most of them have their own website such as http://www.galvestonfoundationrepair.com/ 

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Who to Hire for a Foundation Repair? 

A homeowner must have the issue examined by an expert when the warning signs of a foundation problem are found. Several foundation problems are only cosmetic and don’t affect the house’s structural integrity. A foundation professional would be able to examine the situation and make suggestions as to what must be done.  

Foundation Repair 

The cosmetic damage caused by small foundation issues could be repaired usually by a homeowner. But, an expert foundation repair specialist must be contracted to make the proper repairs if the load-bearing ability of the foundation has been compromised. 

Repair methods made to a damaged or sunken foundation vary on the type of the original foundation. Installing several extra piers might be required to evenly deliver the weight. This increases the support area for your foundation. To create extra piers, cement-filled and round pylon tubes are frequently used.  

Here are some questions that you need to ask yourself before hiring a professional Galveston TX foundation repairs specialist:  

  • Does the Contractor really know how to repair foundations? 

A certified foundation repair contractor means more than going to a school for 2 weeks from a franchise operator and thus gaining a certification.  

Foundation repair is a hard industry to learn. A lot of people have seen individuals who attempt to create companies knowing nothing or too little about the actual procedure of repair.  

A homeowner surely does not want to deal with a new repair problem created in an effort to repair their foundation. In the long run, this costs everybody more. 

  • Does the company have a list of contented clients? 

A good foundation repair company would provide local references when requested. Look at the online presence of the company and in the community.  

It is best to get 1st-hand data from someone you trust and know. So, ask your friends and family if they have any suggestions. Always confirm the ratings online.  

  • Is the foundation contractor insured and licensed? 

A good foundation repair company must show proof of insurance when requested. In addition to bringing a commercial vehicle policy, they must have a workman compensation policy, together with a general business liability policy. It should have limits higher than the minimum requirements of the state. 

You need to ensure they hold a valid trade license and pull required permits if licensing is needed by your city or state.  

  • Are they familiar with your soil type and area? 

A foundation repair company must be familiar with the local construction methods, as well as the conditions of the soil. Even within a few blocks, the soil condition could be extremely different. 

A repair company must have a great understanding of the various types of foundations and how each would react if piers are applied. Homeowners may also ensure that the repair company has a shop location or verifiable physical office.  

  • Is the repair work under warranty? 

Potential clients must also ask about the warranty for the work done, in addition to the items above.  

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Tips for Hiring a Foundation Repair Specialist

 

It is not possible for homeowners to become professionals on every aspect of foundation performance. But, the foundation repair industry is full of inconsistencies and errors that conflict with the wellbeing of the homeowners. Foundation repair in the U.S. is a $51 billion per year industry. However, a lot of repairs are ineffective and misdiagnosed.  

Foundation Repair 

To cut through the maze of misinformation and hire a good foundation repair specialist, ask these questions: 

  • Is the individual doing the inspection paid a commission? 

Several companies pay the technician who analyzes, inspects the data and makes suggestions based on what she or he sells to the homeowner. This makes a significant conflict of interest right from the beginning. A lot of salespeople have good talent. However, they lack the attention to detail needed for accurate analysis and observations, compared to foundation engineers.  

  • Has the company undergone training from several sources? 

The people doing the analysis must have training certifications from industry sources, like independent foundation organizations or associations. The repair suggestions would consist of the products that supplier provides if a foundation inspection company receives training from one supplier that supplies an answer for one certain issue. There are a lot of foundation issues exist from one blanket solution to repair them all.  

  • Is the analysis reviewed by an engineer? 

Would a licensed engineer have any reviews on the suggestions, analysis, and observations before you obtain them? How confident could a homeowner be that the foundation examination and repair plan obtained a full and objective analysis if there are no engineering reviews? 

  • Do they recommend foundation repairs they do not offer? 

Inspection companies frequently sell a solution to a homeowner. But, they must also provide solutions to issues that need technologies they do not have.  

For example, what do you think the interpretation of the issue would be if the company provides solutions for either heave or settlement – but not both. Most probably, it would slope towards the product of that company. 

  • Do the inspection methods follow the standards of the industry? 

How could you know they are effective or useful at all if the inspection process does not follow any standards of the industry? Showing up and observing around does not mean they are doing the correct process. Even taking several elevations is not enough. Inspection methods must follow the industry standards. 

  • How would the company measure the severity of the issue? 

Is it the opinion of the salesperson who is being paid on a commission to sell anything that day? You could see the conflict. Are they utilizing any standards accepted by the industry to judge the severity of the problem? The suggestions are only opinions that carry no credibility if the answer is no.  

  • How familiar is the inspector with the conditions? 

This is more significant that you may think. Building practices and soils greatly vary from one state to another. The probability of errors is high if the company doesn’t have a good track record with local conditions.  

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