Foundation wall cracks are the most common source of seepage in poured concrete foundations. They are caused most frequently by stress, settling or shrinkage during the concrete’s curing process.
In general, most cracks are hairline (less than 1/8” wide) and run vertically or diagonally from the top of the foundation wall down to the bottom. They also go all the way through the wall which is why they leak. In the event your foundation walls are covered by paneling or drywall, our Estimator can usually locate the crack(s) on the exterior if the top of the foundation wall is exposed above the ground level.
We offer crack repair solutions from both the exterior and interior. Our Estimator will recommend the best method of repair based on site conditions.
Most cracks do not pose structural concerns. The ones that do tend to be wider than 1/8”, run horizontally or stair step into the mortar of the above grade exterior brickwork. Other common signs include a buckled / bowed foundation wall (see Wall Bracing), a sinking foundation, drywall cracks and upstairs doors and windows that tend to stick or not close easily.
Foundation Crack Repair
Foundation wall cracks can be repaired from the interior or exterior. From a logical stand point all cracks should be fixed from the outside. Attacking the problem at the source. What we always reccommend first is to dig the crack out from the outside. This process includes a hand dug hole on the exterior of the home. We than clean the crack from the outside and put a layer of fibrated mastic over the crack. Following the mastic is a thick industrial plastic with a 300 hundred year shelf life.
This method will guarantee that no water will ever enter that crack, for the lifetime of the home!
There are other methods to fixing a crack. If for some reason the home has something on the outside that will prevent us from digging we have to go another route. For example a patio, deck, or elaborate lanscaping.
What we do on the inside is either an epoxy injection or a vapor barrier hung on the wall that will direct that water south beneath the floor. All ways are effective but of course, attacking it from the outside should always be your number one option.