Have you recently noticed that your first floor is sagging or sloping? Do you feel safe when you walk across it? Sagging floors are not only a safety hazard, they are a serious problem indicating that your crawl space has structural problems.
Why is My Floor Sagging?
There are three primary reasons that crawl spaces experience structural sagging or sloping:
Support Columns Are Too Far Apart
Sometimes, homes are built with poor quality crawl spaces. Some of these crawl spaces have too few support beams or beams spaced incorrectly. When there aren't enough beams to support eh weight of everything above it, the beams will begin to weaken and sag down. This causes the flooring above to bow and create an unsafe environment.
Rot-Weakened Joists, Girders, or Posts
The supports holding up your home are typically made of wood, and if your crawl space isn’t sealed, it is susceptible to humidity and moisture. These conditions destroy joists, girders, and posts, as moist wood is the perfect environment for mold and rot to breed. In these conditions, your joists will sag and can cause your main floor above to sink, slope, or give way at any moment.
Column settlement due to weak soil or poor footings can also cause your floors because your home and support columns will likely settle at different rates. Should this happen, you will likely notice that some of your doors and windows stick and cannot be opened or closed all the way.
Telltale Symptoms of Damaged Floor Joists
- Moist, rotting wood
- Skewed or unlevel door and window frames
- Sagging, sloping, or uneven upstairs floors
- Tilting or sinking crawl space supports
- Cracks in the interior drywall