Bowed basement walls occur when the walls of the foundation curve inward, forming what looks like a bow. If the bowing becomes too much, the walls may begin to crack or break. Basement walls are under constant pressure, so over time, this can occur. If it does, you need to get them repaired as quickly as possible to prevent further damage.
- What are some common causes of bowed basement walls?
Basement walls can begin to bow doe to the expansion of the clay soil that they sit in. This can occur because this soil can easily expand or contract depending on the level of moisture. The basement walls can also bow due to pressure being exerted on them by any water that accumulates in the soil. This is can occur if there is a problem with water drainage on the property. Finally, if the soil freezes and then expands, it can put pressure on the walls as the temperature changes.
Some foundations may bow simply due to the home settling in. No matter what the reason is, the constant pressure on the walls can cause it to bow, and you need to have it checked out.
- Signs to look out for
There are several signs that you should look out for when trying to determine whether you have bowed basement walls. Specifically, you should look for:
- Basement walls that seem to be leaning in at the top, near the ceiling
- Wet clay soil around the home and cracks or bulges in the area near this soil
- Walls that appear to be sliding in near the bottom
- Cracks along the foundation walls that appear horizontal or resemble stair steps
- Diagonal cracking at the corners of the walls
- Bulging or inward bowing in the walls
- Can bowed basement walls be fixed?
If caught in time, bowed basement walls can be repaired. One common way is to stabilize the wall with a wall restraint system. If the bow is extreme, contractors may need to excavate the soil and straighten the wall. A professional will be able to tell you the best method for your specific problem
Keeping your home’s foundation strong is important to ensure that your entire house remains in excellent shape for years to come. If you notice a problem with your basement, such as bowed basement walls, be sure to contact your local contractor as soon as possible for an evaluation.
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