Contractor Tips Blog

Jan
25

What Is Causing Your Unlevel Deck or Porch?

Have you noticed your porch or deck is no longer level with your home? This is a common problem and one that can be perplexing, especially if your home’s foundation seems to be in excellent shape and level. Understanding why these exterior structures can become unlevel can help you come up with a solution to fix the problem and prevent further issues.

Why Decks and Porches Settle Faster

Unless they were constructed poorly for the beginning, in most cases, an unlevel porch or deck is caused by settling. The footers that support the deck or porch can settle or sink, often not at the same rate on the opposing sides, creating an unlevel surface. While the house these structures are attached to may remain level, the exposure to the elements is usually why decks and porches settle quicker.

Water and soil erosion are often the culprits of settling foundations and footers. With decks and porches, there is less protection from the elements, allowing more rain and moisture to affect the soil around the footers and supports. This causes quicker settling and can lead to an unlevel structure.

Repair and Prevention

The good news is most decks and porches that are unlevel can be fixed without complete replacement. Often, an experienced foundation expert can elevate the structure to make it level again and repair deck posts that will prevent further settling. In some cases, additional supports need to be added to keep the structure level. Other prevention options include adding a roof or covering that will add more protection from the elements and looking at better drainage solutions.

If your deck or porch is unlevel, have it inspected by a foundation specialist. They can offer repair options and help with prevention methods to protect your structure.

Posted on behalf of:
Anglin’s Foundation & Masonry Repairs
1027 Oregon Trail
Marietta, GA 30008
(770) 422-2924

Oct
4

Common Problems Homeowners Mistake as No Big Deal

When you own an older home, you expect that some things won’t work perfectly. Decades of time can settle a home and cause slight changes in the structure. However, there is a big difference between floors that creak and a home that has a foundation that is sinking. Some common problems that homeowners write off as no big deal can often be signs of a foundation issue. Here are some issues that deserve a second look and inspection by a foundation specialist.

Door and Window Issues

Windows that won’t open or doors that won’t close can be more serious that just settling in the door jams or stuck window paint. If the foundation is settling, these openings in the structure may be the first places that show signs of distress. One problem window may be just an old home oddity, but if you have having trouble with a few doors or windows, you should get a foundation inspection.

Walls Cracks

Interior or exterior wall cracks are not “wrinkles” on an old home. They are signs of a foundation that is unlevel or settling. If not fixed, these cracks will become larger and more frequent. Eventually, the home may no longer be safe.

Floor Issues

Your floors are another area that may be overlooked when it comes to old homes. Unlevel or sloping floors; cracks between the floors and walls; cracks in the floor tiles; these can all be signs of a foundation issue.

Even if a problem seems in significant and is only a nuisance, it can be a sign of a larger issue in your home. Call in a foundation expert to have your home inspected to determine whether your common old home problems are due to an issue with your foundation.

Posted on behalf of:
Anglin’s Foundation & Masonry Repairs
1027 Oregon Trail
Marietta, GA 30008
(770) 422-2924

Sep
6

Does Your Bay Window Need Help?

Bay windows add beauty and character to a home. However, these heavy windows need sufficient support to keep them level and functional. If you have a bay window in your home that looks un-level or no longer will open/close, there may be structural damage causing the problem. Often, it is not the window that is the problem; the window is only a symptom of other issues occurring in the support system of the house.

In homes with original bay windows, a sagging window or functional issues can be signs of a foundation problem. The foundation could be settling or there could be structural issues within the support walls that are allowing the window to become unstable. Since bay windows tend to be heavier than other windows, they can be the first symptom of a structural issue.

If a bay window is part of an addition to the home, the problem may lie in the construction of the addition. Many additions are not properly built to support the weight of a heavy bay window. In these cases, adding the correct support can resolve the problem and ensure the addition is designed to accommodate the weight of the larger window.

If you have a bay window that needs help, you may want to call a foundation expert first, not your local window contractor. Replacing or repairing the window may only put a bandage on the real problem. Since bay window issues are often caused by foundation or structural damage, it is best to have your home inspected for larger issues before wasting money on a window repair. Call a masonry or foundation expert that can fix both any structural damage and your window for the best results.

Posted on behalf of:
Anglin’s Foundation & Masonry Repairs
1027 Oregon Trail
Marietta, GA 30008
(770) 422-2924

Nov
29

Common Causes of Brick Issues in Your Home

Posted in Masonry

Some of the oldest homes have been constructed from brick, a testimonial to the durability of masonry for long-lasting structures. However, even quality brick and masonry construction can need repair and maintenance. If you own an older brick home, you can expect that eventually you will need masonry repairs. Here are some common brick construction issues and what to look for it your masonry needs repair.

Foundation Settlement

A common reason that brick or masonry work cracks is settlement in the foundation of the home. These “stair step cracks” can begin small and grow as more settlement occurs. Luckily, these issues are easily repaired when you hire an experienced masonry company.

Another sign of foundation settlement or structural damage is bowing or bulging walls. Unlike stair step cracks, this is a sign of a serious underlying issue. However, it can be remedied if foundation repairs are made quickly by a masonry or foundation expert.

Steel Expansion

Masonry is often held in place by a steel framework underneath, especially in doors and windows. Steel can expand, causing damage to the brick work. Often a crack will appear in the upper corners of a garage door or window. The steel lintels that support these openings can need repair or replacement, as well as the overlying masonry work.

Other causes of brick issues are thermal expansion or weather-related damage. Regardless of the cause, at the first sign of cracks or changes in the masonry work in your home, call in a brick expert. Most issues can be repaired quickly if caught in the early stages. Waiting can lead to further damage to your home and more expensive repairs.

Posted on behalf of:
Anglin’s Foundation & Masonry Repairs
1027 Oregon Trail
Marietta, GA 30008
(770) 422-2924

Jan
28

Do You Have a Sagging Floor in Your Home?

Is there a noticeable slope or sagging in one or more rooms in your home? This is especially common in homes that are built with a crawl space underneath the home. Over time, the floor boards can begin to sag due to a lack of support. This type of issue should never be ignored. The problem will only proceed to worsen, causing safety issues and can also impact the value of your home. Often the problem can be repaired with some added support to the foundation of the home.

Most sagging floors are on homes without the steel beams under the main level flooring that are usually in place for homes with a basement. This lack of additional support allows the floor boards to sag over time. Sagging floors can also be a sign of more crucial structural damage and are an indication that the home needs foundation repair.

In many cases a sagging floor can be repaired with the addition of steel support beams under the flooring. Contractors may use floor hydraulic jacks to bring the floor back to a level position, then add steel beams and/or solid footers to support the home. This creates a solid foundation that is lacking in homes with only a crawl space underneath instead of a solid foundation or structurally sound basement that adds extra support.

Don’t live with sagging floors. Call your local foundation contractor to get an estimate on repairing your home’s support system. Not only can it improve the look of your home by leveling sagging floors, it can extend the life and increase the value of your most important asset.

Posted on behalf of:
Anglin’s Foundation & Masonry Repairs
Marietta, GA
(770) 422-2924

Oct
26

Signs of a Sinking Home Foundation

The foundation of a home is what protects the entire structure and keeps everything aligned and in place. When the foundation begins to sink due to soil erosion or other issues, the entire house is at risk of damage and even collapse. The good news is that a foundation that is sinking can be repaired and structural damage avoided if it is caught and repaired quickly. Often there are subtle signs that a foundation is sinking that can help alert homeowners to the problem before it cause substantial damage to the home.

  • Doors or windows are uneven. If suddenly doors and windows are not opening and closing easily or seem uneven, this could be a sign there is settling in the foundation.
  • Cracks. Cracks around windows, cracks in drywall, cracks in the actual walls or foundation – all these are signs that the whole house may be settling or the foundation sinking.
  • Uneven floors. Does one end of the house seem to have an uneven floor, usually leaning down toward the outside wall? The foundation may be sinking on that side of the house.
  • Roof leaks. If your roof is leaking, it can be a sign of a foundation problem. This is especially true if you have a newer roof that shouldn’t be having leaking issues.

A sinking foundation will only get worse and should never be ignored. The quicker the issue is addressed and repaired, the better chance you have of preventing further damage to the structure. In most cases, the longer you wait, the more expensive it will be to repair. At the first sign of a sinking foundation, call your local foundation repair professional to begin discussing repair solutions.

Posted on behalf of:
Anglin’s Foundation & Masonry Repairs
Marietta, GA
(770) 422-2924

Apr
8

Is Your Porch, Steps or Deck Sinking?

Have you noticed a lean or sag in your front steps or stoop? Is your porch or deck uneven? These are common problems that happen when footings begin to sink or settle on older homes. Not only does this devalue your home aesthetically, it can be dangerous for you, your family and your guests. The good news is that these settling issues can be fixed, often without needing to replace the entire structure above.

Resolving Sinking or Settling Footings

The cause of most sinking or leaning porches, decks or steps is not the structure itself, but the footings or foundation that it is braced upon. Posts, footings and foundations will settle over time, allowing the structure above to become uneven. This can lead to many issues, including:

  • Cracked or uneven steps
  • Cracked or uneven porches or stoops
  • Leaning decks
  • Disconnected joints in railings

In many cases, an experienced masonry or foundation specialist can resolve the issue without needing to replace the entire structure. Foundation experts can use specialized equipment and techniques to permanently fix settling issues so that the base for footings or posts are level and secure. Those with expertise in masonry can also fix cracks and other damage caused by the settled foundation, making concrete or brick porches and steps safe and beautiful again.

If you have settling problems surrounding the entrances to your home, don’t wait to have them repaired. The more the posts, footings or foundations sink, the most damage they will cause to the structure. Call a foundation and masonry expert to evaluate the problem and offer solutions to get your steps, porch or deck back on even ground.

Posted on behalf of:
Anglin’s Foundation & Masonry Repairs
Marietta, GA
(770) 422-2924

 

Sep
10

Is Your Home Foundation Settling?

Both older and new homes can fall victim to foundation settling. Due to environmental, structural and other factors, foundations can begin to sink or settle over time. This may lead to uneven floors, damage to walls and windows and even danger of structural collapse. If you own a home which has begun to show signs of foundation settling, it’s imperative to have the problem resolved before your foundation and home become compromised. 

Causes Of Foundation Settling

It’s common for the foundations of older homes to settle decades after they were built. Still, older homes aren’t the only structures susceptible to settling. Often, time is not the sole culprit; there are several other factors which may be contributing to a sinking or settling foundation. 

  • Soil. Homes built on soil with a high clay composition are often in greater danger of sinking or settling than those built upon other soil types. Clay compacts quicker than looser soils, allowing the foundation to sink in certain spots. Clay also poorly disperses water, trapping moisture near the surface which can damage the foundation.
     
  • Foundation construction. Some foundations are poorly constructed, making them settle quickly even though they may be only a few years old.
     
  • Environmental changes. Earth shifts, heavy precipitation and structural damage from severe storms can all effect a home’s foundation. 

The first signs a foundation is settling are often cracks in the exterior or basement walls, as well as in the foundation slab. The good news is that often, these settling and foundation problems can be fixed or repaired before more damage is done to the structure of the home. If you are concerned that your home is beginning to settle, don’t wait to call an experienced foundation repair expert to assess and repair the damage, preventing further settling and loss of value to your property.

Posted on behalf of Anglins Foundation Repairs

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