Foundation repair can be a tricky thing. You have to consider that you are fixing the very thing that holds your house up. Only a structural engineer can repair your foundation properly.
The first thing that you need to know is what causes foundation damage.
What Causes Foundation Damage?
Although natural disasters and other weather issues will cause foundation issues, some things are easily preventable. These are:
- Overloading of the foundation
- Little or no compaction
- Excessive organics
- Changes in moisture content
- Rot or poor waterproofing
Having a structural engineer look for these problems in your foundation before they become major will help prevent further damage to your home. Some problems are easily corrected or repaired.
How Does a Structural Engineer Solve Foundation Issues?
A structural engineer has a variety of tools to solve your problems. They can fix minor issues using repointing and repair techniques. Major problems are solved by lifting your home to make the necessary foundation repairs.
To lift your home, they put beams and jacks under the structure and gradually jack up your home. This is by far the most extensive foundation repair, but it is one of the most effective. Not all homes will need this to be done.
What Does a Structural Engineer Cost?
Some foundation companies will give free estimates, while others will charge a small fee. To come up with the most accurate price, they will come out and assess the damage. Once this is done, they will calculate the time it will take to repair your foundation and what materials are necessary. Each repair is different, and the overall cost will vary greatly. Since these repairs are expensive, you might want to consider a construction loan or contacting your homeowner’s insurance.
Foundation repair is never something to take lightly. Although many people can simply jack up a home, only a structural engineer can fix it correctly. An improper repair can result in even more damage and even more costs.