3 Types of Basement Cracks
  • Posted on March 25, 2019
  • By Dave Mauldin

A small crack in your basement wall or a little moisture underneath your window may not seem like that big of a deal. After all, how much damage can one tiny crack cause? As it turns out, quite a lot.

No matter where the crack is, even the smallest crack can let water into your basement and damage your foundation over time. As water continues to seep into your basement through cracks, you could find yourself with an all-out flood before you know it. Every time water forces its way through the crack, it will get wider as it slowly wears down. Cracks don’t just let water in- they also create an open invitation for insects and other pests to come into your home. The last thing you want to deal with is a flooded basement and an insect infestation.

Basement crack repair is so important because it prevents even more damaging issues like bowing foundation walls. As a crack decreases the structural integrity of your home, your foundation could start to bow in, requiring shoring up, and causing your roof to sag, among many other issues.

Basement cracks aren’t just a small symptom. Instead, they could become a big issue requiring expensive repairs. Call Mission Home Services for basement crack repair early, before it becomes an issue.

Basement cracks come in all shapes and sizes. Check out these three different types below.

 

Wall Cracks

When most people think of basement cracks, wall cracks are typically what they think of. These can look like staircase cracks and follow along the edges of bricks or cement blocks in a zig zag pattern that looks much like a staircase. However, wall cracks can also run horizontally or vertically along the wall and can be noticeable on either the exterior or interior wall. They can even run diagonally in corners around windows and doors.

These cracks can be repaired with Mission Home Service’s Polygem Epoxy. This solution restores structural strength to the wall and adheres to fiberglass, concrete, wood, and metal. This epoxy is chemical and solvent resistant, preventing it from cracking again and maintaining a waterproof seal.

However, you can’t just fix the symptom without fixing the problem. When dealing with wall cracks, it’s a good idea to install a perimeter drain system. When it comes to wall cracks, basement crack repair isn’t just about fixing the crack, but creating a long-lasting permanent solution that will return structural integrity to your foundation.

 

Floor Cracks

Concrete is actually pretty porous. Water can rise directly from the ground and through your floor, a problem that’s exacerbated by the presence of floor cracks. Because the water is coming from underground, the first step in repairing the crack is to install a perimeter drain system to move the water away from the floor. A direct drainage channel is also installed, which will guide any water that comes through the crack directly into your sump pump.

Drainage channels are installed by removing a section of your basement floor and installing a PVC pipe underneath it. The line will be pitched to move any water directly towards the sump pump and away from the site of the crack. This method is also known as a “lateral line.” While they won’t always be necessary, they are a good cost-effective way to keep your basement dry in the event of serious flooding.

Whereas we use Polygem Epoxy or FlexiSpan sealants for wall cracks, our process for basement crack repair is a little different when it comes to floor cracks. Versus an injection with a sealant, floor cracks are backfilled with stone and then covered with fresh concrete to prevent any future leaks. In order for the concrete to seal completely, allow at least three days to pass before walking on the area or reapplying any weight to the surface.

Floor cracks can be caused by several different things. If the soil is unstable underneath your foundation and begins to shift, the concrete slab could settle, creating gaps between the wall and the floor or between the wall and the ceiling as the floor begins to pull away. Cracks on the walls, floors, and especially diagonal cracks in the corners are all signs of foundation settlement.

 

Leaky Windows

Basement windows are most often installed using low-quality steel or wood frames. As the materials begin to break down, gaps form, allowing water to leak through. Degrading materials can cause many problems. Not only does the window frame hang loosely in the wall, but the panes themselves become loose. Rust and corrosion can occur, and your home will become draftier as the window deteriorates further: costing you plenty in home energy bills. As water leaks through the gaps around your windows and into your basement, flooding and mold can occur.

Mission Home Services uses the WellDuct System to fix leaking basement windows. The first step is to install a French drain system which will direct water away from your windows. If a drainage system isn’t feasible, a small drywell can be created beneath the window.

If necessary, the installer can then create a small hole in the wall to create a drainage channel with a PVC pipe to direct water into your drainage system or drywell. Once the drain is carefully installed and sealed, all water should be directed away from your windows to prevent material breakdown and leaks.

However, this basement crack repair isn’t complete until your basement windows are fully replaced with well-fitting high-quality new windows.

Basement crack repair can be a difficult job that has a major impact on your home’s structural integrity and comfort. If you think you could be facing issues with floor cracks, wall cracks, or leaky windows, give Mission Home Services a call. We’re happy to help.

Experiencing Water Issues?

Basement Waterproofing

From full floods to persistent leaks, the thought of water damage is enough to keep many homeowners up on a rainy night. With Mission Home Services’ basement waterproofing, you can put your worries to rest.

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Foundation problems can cause a real headache. No homeowner wants to see bowing walls or cracks in their foundation. But without the proper repairs, foundation issues can impact your home’s safety, appearance, and value.

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Your crawl space needs solid mid-span support that’s usually provided by a post and beam assembly. As time goes on, wooden posts rot, shift, or settle. This causes sagging floor joists along with other structural problems. Don’t live with an uneven or sinking crawl space.

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