Sticking Windows or Doors
When you reach to open the window or door, you notice that it's sticking or jammed. It could be a problem with the molding or an aging latch, but it's often a sign of subsidence as well. If you notice sticking windows or doors, check your home for cracks in the walls. These two symptoms combined are early signs of subsidence and foundation damage.
Pay attention to doors or windows that are sticking and difficult to operate, swing open on their own, or have gaps around them. If these problems occur, investigate the cause right away. The cause behind these problems could be a sinking or otherwise unstable foundations. As subsidence occurs, the soil underneath a building can no longer support the load and the foundation starts to settle. This can occur due to a change in the soil conditions, so buildings of all ages are susceptible to foundation settlement. If you notice problems with doors and windows or cracks, you should start monitoring the extent of the problems and call us for a professional survey. We are the experts when it comes to repairing settling foundations in Orange County, and our resin injection underneath your concrete is often the best solution.
In order to choose the best way to repair your Orange County home, the cause of the settling foundation must first be determined. The most common causes of foundation movement/settlement are:
Declining groundwater level
The presence of groundwater provides an upward force known as buoyancy, which also affects soil particles. When the groundwater level drops, the underlying soil layers are subjected to higher loading, which can cause a compression and, thus, a settlement of the foundation.
Flowing water, in particular, can erode soils that are located beneath a foundation. This causes a voiding of the soil layer and a loss of bearing capacity, leading to a settlement. The source of water can be rainfall or broken water pipes, among others.
Improperly compacted soil
If the coarse soil layer under load-bearing structures or floors was not properly compacted during construction, a settlement will occur.
A nearby construction activity, especially piling and excavations or heavy road/rail traffic, can cause a significant vibration in the underlying soil. This may cause a further compaction or liquefaction of sensitive soils, leading to a settlement.
In certain cohesive soils, variations in water content may cause volumetric changes. Very dry seasons or vegetation may cause the soil to lose moisture to an extent that it shrinks, causing cracks and even voids in the ground.
Inadequate foundation design
In the design phase of a building, the information on soil conditions may be insufficient, leading to design errors. Soil compressibility may be underestimated, which may cause settlement of your Orange County home. Repairing settling foundations is our specialty, so give us a call today!
GeobearUSA is the North American Branch of Geobear International