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Foundation Repair

Northern Georgia foundation repair contractors for settlement, uneven floors, wall cracks, and more.

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Your foundation is the key element that makes up your home’s structural integrity. It is responsible for keeping your home upright and safe for you and your family. When it begins experiencing problems due to water or soil, it can spell out trouble for the rest of your home. Destruction such as bowing or cracking walls, sticking windows and doors, floor and wall gaps, and sloping or uneven floors are all signs of foundation damage. For the most part, foundation problems arise due to the soil upon which it was built.  


Causes of Foundation Damage

Here are a few of the common causes of foundation problems we will look for during your inspection:

If there aren’t proper drainage solutions installed on your property, water can pool around your foundation walls and cause serious damage. Signs that water is being improperly channeled around the perimeter of your home include:

  • Leaking, overflowing gutters
  • Downspouts that dump water directly into the soil surrounding your home
  • Soil erosion
  • Puddles in yard after heavy rain
  • Efflorescence on foundation walls
  • Mold or mildew in basement or crawl space

Hydrostatic pressure is the pressure that standing water in the soil surrounding your home places on your foundation. The pull of gravity causes the water to push hard against anything that restricts its flow—in this case, your foundation walls. Hydrostatic pressure can cause foundation walls to crack and bow, and can even force water through the smallest of fractures and the wall-floor joint.

The soil in Atlanta and the surrounding areas is known as Georgia Red Clay. Georgia Red Clay is an expansive soil, known for expanding when it is wet and shrinking when it is dry. This creates two problems for your foundation: 

  1. When expansive soils are wet, they expand and place a significant amount of pressure against your foundation walls. When the pressure is too much for your foundation to bear, your foundation walls will give way by bowing and cracking. 
  2. When expansive soils dry out, they shrink and pull away from your foundation walls. This causes your foundation to settle, leading to differential settlement and foundation cracks. 

To level depressed or hollow areas where a foundation will be built, or to fill in gaps once a foundation has been poured, contactors sometimes bring in loose fill soil. This freshly disrupted fill soil is much looser than the dense, hard-packed virgin soils on site. If fill soil isn’t compacted well, it may compress underneath the weight of the new home, creating settlement problems that can cause foundation damage. 

While tree roots are unlikely to push through your foundation walls, they can cause damage by disrupting the soils around your home. During drought, clay soils dry and cause roots to shrink. When it rains, the roots absorb water and expand. This constant expansion and shrinkage of tree roots causes soils to become weak and less supportive, often leading to foundation settlement. 

Heavy rain and busted pipes can lead to soil washout under your foundation. When soil washes out from under your home, foundation settlement can occur, leading to foundation cracks.  

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Is Foundation Repair the Right Solution for Me?

When homeowners start to notice foundation damage on their homes, it’s common to wonder what caused it. The truth is, Mother Nature plays the biggest role in inflicting harm on your foundation. Atlanta receives about 50 inches of rain per year. This is well above the national precipitation average is about 30 inches (including rain and snow). Excess rain on an unprotected basement, unsealed crawl space, or broken gutters will always have an impact on the soil that your foundation rests on.  

The expansive clay soil around your home will grow larger as the rain collects, then shrink as it evaporates and dries out again. This constant fluctuation and movement of soil creates a finicky support system for your home, setting advanced settlement into motion as your home sinks into voids in the soil.  

At the first sight of these problems, you’ll want to take action right away. Foundation issues always get worse with time, not better. While we can’t stop the rain or the soil expansion, we can restore your home back to stability to stand up against the elements. Book your free inspection today. 

FAQs

When it comes to foundation wall cracks, there are seemingly endless repair methods. From helical piers to wall anchor systems, each foundation wall repair method serves to restore damage that has been caused by different forces. Identifying the cause of your foundation wall cracks will help you find the foundation wall repair method that will provide strength and stability to your home for years to come.  

 
Here at AquaGuard, we go above and beyond fixing the issue cosmetically. Our staff works diligently to find the root cause of the problems and offer solutions that give you peace of mind knowing foundation wall cracks won’t become a recurring issue.

We use push piers and helical piers as a long-term solution for foundation repairs. Foundations tend to settle because the soil beneath them can no longer support them. When the soil starts to shift, it becomes unreliable and affects the home. This is fixed by using foundation piers that stabilize the home and provide the structural support it needs to stay upright. Many falsely believe that once they are installed, the piers alone will support the home and that’s not the case. The piers transfer the weight of the structure to sturdy soil. 

The main difference between helical and push piers is in how they are used to stabilize the home. Helical piers are steel rods that have a helix blade attached to one end. The blade is used to drive the rod into the soil and reach the depth it needs. These rods can’t get past the sedimentary rock since they can’t drill into them. Helical piers support a lot of weight but sometimes can stabilize homes that are too heavy and that’s where you need push piers. 

Push piers are used for larger structures because they use the counterweight of the building itself to stay in the ground. There are no helix blades to drill and the piers are drilled into the ground on their own by being hydraulically pushed – hence the name “push piers”. They put an incredible amount of pressure on the foundation and stabilize and lift it in the process. The structure returns the pressure right back and that’s how everything stays even. These piers do better on tougher soils and they are the only ones you can use if you have sedimentary rock below your home. 

Though there are several DIY foundation crack repair solutions that can fix cosmetic wall damage, there’s no way to address structural damage without hiring a foundation repair professional. If you’re unsure whether your foundation cracks require structural repair, call AquaGuard today. We offer free foundation inspections and no-obligation cost estimates. 

When your gutters are clogged with leaves, branches or other debris, water can’t effectively flow through the drainpipe and down the downspout. This leads to water flowing over your gutters and pooling around your foundation. When water sits on top of the soil it becomes saturated and causes hydrostatic pressure to build up and crack your foundation. Fortunately, Athens has well-draining sandy loam soil, but problems can still arise if too much rainfall hits the area.  
 

Why Foundation Repair Is Needed

While foundation settlement seems like a home repair worth waiting on, putting it on the back burner for too long can leave you and your home in a sticky or even hazardous situation. These are the most common reasons for fixing your foundation ASAP.  

cracked foundation

Structural Integrity 

Small cracks or slopes are small signs of a large structural issue at play beneath and around your home. The more these issues progress, you could run into even worse problems signs, along with potentially disastrous structural failure.

home sold

Resale Value 

Should you decide to list your home, you may run into issues with getting the offer you want. According to Homelight, major foundation issues can reduce a home’s sales price by 10-15%. You may end up receiving what feels like lowball offers or only receive interest from people who want to flip your home. Investing in your home can raise your market value, and with a better offer, you may be able to make back the money you spent on repairs.  

home repair

The Expense of Cosmetic Repairs Increases

The cracks in your walls, drywall nail pops, or non-functioning doors and windows can incur unsightly cosmetic damage the more advanced your home’s foundation issues become. The longer you wait to repair your home’s structure, the more areas in your home these problem signs will appear, forcing you to eventually have to buy new doors, windows, paint, spackle, flooring, or even labor for the cosmetic repairs.  

Common Foundation Repair & Tips

Tips

  • Keep An Eye on Your Gutters! Your gutters are a major protector of your home’s foundation. By making sure that rainwater flows away from your home, it protects your foundation from pooling water. It’s recommended that all homeowners clean and inspect their gutters twice a year, in the spring and in the fall. If you have trees close to your house, then you’ll want to clean your gutters four times a year.  
  • Watch Out for Trees. Tree roots can affect your foundation. As roots grow far and wide in search of moisture, they can collide and inflict pressure upon your foundation walls or slab foundation, potentially causing cracks, bowing, leaks, and more. 
  • Maintain a Positively Graded Yard. A positive yard grade means that your landscape directs water away from your home. When your yard is negatively graded, you may notice water pooling around your home which will eventually be soaked up by the soil, setting further damage into motion.  

Mistakes 

  • Completing Cosmetic Repairs Before Structural. Spackling up cracks or re-nailing in nails, or even placing concrete blocks in your crawl space to prop up your floor are simple, temporary solutions. You may notice them working within the first month, but the cracks and nail pops will reappear before you know it.  
  • DIYing Home Repair. Foundation repair is a tough thing to do on your own. While YouTube videos or online listicles may teach you that you can permanently repair your home, this is unfortunately not true without professional-grade equipment and solutions. At-home DIY solutions tend to be temporary, putting you through rounds of multiple repairs and frustration. This could end up costing you more money and even putting you in danger.  
  • Going With a General Contractor for Repairs. While there are many skilled general contractors, going with a specialized foundation company will ensure your issues are correctly diagnosed. Many general contractors also may not have the equipment needed to complete structural repairs, and you may end up seeing your issues persist after thinking you’ve completed repairs. At AquaGuard, we’ve seen almost everything in homes in the greater Atlanta area and have the knowledge and innovative foundation solutions to revitalize your home, the first time.  

Find your service area

Atlanta, GA

Atlanta, GA

Atlanta has muggy summers and wet winters. Year-round moisture leads to damage in all foundation types, but AquaGuard has plenty of solutions to permanently protect your home.

Athens, GA

Athens, GA

Driving rain and high humidity makes foundation problems an issue for homes in Athens. Unfortunately, the sandy soil doesn’t help matters much and can put homes at risk.

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    PROUDLY SERVING GREATER ATLANTA AND NORTH GEORGIA

    Atlanta Office

    875 Pickens Industrial Dr
    Marietta, GA 30062