Basement foundation walls are built with materials that are designed to withstand great downward pressure. However, how much pressure they can sustain depends on how good the construction job was in the first place. If too much weight is applied for too long of a time, then there will come a point when the wall will fail, especially if it has already begun to bow.
There are several things you can do to find how much basement wall bowing is acceptable. For example, how strong are the materials that were used? What is the temperature of the soil surrounding the foundation walls? Does this temperature fluctuate throughout the day? Is there anything nearby
What is basement wall bowing?
If you have noticed how foundation walls tend to lean slightly outwards, this is known as “basement wall bowing”. This usually happens as a result of pressure from the surrounding soil. If that pressure is too much and too long-lasting then the wall will eventually start to bend and buckle.
Basement wall bowing is how much foundation wall bowing is acceptable. If the amount of bowing is very slight and does not pose a threat to the stability of the structure, then there’s no need to worry – unless you want your basement floor to be level.
How do you know if your basement walls are bowed?
Look for structural cracks on the walls or ceiling. If there are substantial gaps between the ground and foundation wall, whether on inside corners of exterior corners, this is a good indicator that your foundation walls are bowing.
Another sign of bowed basement walls is how the floor is paced at a slant as it heads towards exterior walls. Also, if you notice how your windows and doors are not flush to the wall next to them, this could be a sign that there is something wrong with how your foundation walls were built.
Why Do Basement Walls Bow?
There are several reasons why foundation walls start to bow. These include how soil is compacted, how much water surrounds the foundation walls, how much weight is applied to the structure itself, and how thick the wall might be.
Generally speaking, if there is too much weight that has been applied for a very long time then you will probably have bowed walls. This is one of the main reasons why there are building regulations in many areas around the country to ensure that how much basement wall bowing is acceptable.
How To Fix Bowed Basement Walls
In order to fix how much basement wall bowing is acceptable, you will need to add additional foundation blocks at the base of your foundation walls. This will distribute how much pressure there is on them and stop how much basement wall bowing has occurred.
This process should not be taken lightly because this will result in potentially thousands of dollars worth of repairs. Also, how much basement wall bowing has occurred can be a result of how poor your construction job was at the start. Thus, how you fix the basement walls largely depends on how good your initial workmanship was in the first place.
How Much Bowing Is Unacceptable?
How much basement wall bowing is unacceptable really depends on how much pressure there has been over how long of a time period. The longer you leave how much basement wall bowing unaddressed, the more expensive your repairs will be to fix how much basement wall bowing has occurred.
Generally speaking, it is best to contact an expert so they can assess how much basement wall bowing has occurred. They will then be able to provide you with how much basement wall bowing is unacceptable in your specific case, along with how best to resolve the problem.
What To Look For If Basement Walls Have Bowed?
A foundation contractor should be contacted if how much basement wall bowing has occurred. Once the walls have started to bow keep an eye out for the bowing to get worse. There may be visible damage like cracks but there also might be hidden damage.
If the how much basement wall bowing has worsened then it is best to contact a foundation repair contractor as soon as possible before the walls start to crack and can’t support the weight of the home.
The importance of having an experienced contractor build or repair your home’s foundation
Having an experienced and licensed contractor fix your walls cannot be understated. There are many foundation contractors to choose from and how much basement wall bowing has occurred can be a sign of how they did their job. So how do you find how good of a contractor is? Well, that’s the problem: you don’t know how experienced or how skilled they really are so make sure to ask for references