We love to spend time outdoors enjoying the weather. Usually, the weather is our friend, providing some warmth, or a cool breeze to make a day spent outside more enjoyable. Of course, sometimes the weather isn’t so friendly, with heat, or rain beating down on us and making things unpleasant if we don’t find shelter. Unfortunately, weather can also be unfriendly to our homes and property, and in particular the foundation of our homes. Here are some ways that weather can be the culprit for needing a foundation repair.
Heat can definitely be the cause of needing foundation repair. When the temperature is very hot, the soil dries out. As it loses moisture, the soil will shrink, causing separation from the home. This can cause the home to shift, which could mean the need for house leveling. Not only that, but the walls of the house themselves can shrink, causing cracking, settling, and shifting. In times of drought, thousands of people in San Antonio could have issues with doors not functioning properly, cracks in drywall, and walls that look like they are tilting away from the home. One way to try to prevent heat damage on your foundation is to keep the soil cool with hoses. This provides some much-needed moisture along with the cooling benefits.
Of course, you don’t want to water too much, or else you might cause further damage. Too much water can be devastating to foundations. Too much moisture in the soil supporting the foundation can cause it to settle, which in turn can make your house shift and require house leveling. It’s extremely important to make sure that all of your downspouts are functioning properly and directing rainwater away from your home. Be sure to clean them every season and check for any damage. Sometimes, there could be another issue causing foundation problems, like heat, that can cause plumbing problems as the house shifts. If there’s a leak, the water can increase the problems and create massive issues and hefty repair bills.
Frost and Cold
Neither frost nor cold sound like problems you’d find in San Antonio, but they should always be considered. If there is a frost build up in your soil underneath your foundation, then the frozen area pulls moisture from the other areas of soil around it. This can cause the area to heave, which can push your foundation out of place. When builders make foundations, they try to place the slab deeper than what the expected maximum frost depth would be. In San Antonio, that’s not very deep, however in some parts of the country it can be as far as 4 feet down. Issues can arise if there is a prolonged unexpected cold snap that’s out of the ordinary. In that case, the frost might go deeper than expected, and problems can occur.
This is definitely not generally an issue in South Texas, but snow can cause major problems on a foundation. In many parts of the country, homes are built with snowfall factored in. Snow can sit against the walls of a home and in the soil that surrounds it for long periods of time. As it melts, it can cause water damage and heaving.
Usually, our homes, including the foundations are built to withstand the weather. Sometimes, though, the weather can be the enemy. Keep an eye out for foundation problems during any extreme weather events.