If a homeowner want to keep his home standing, it needs a solid foundation underneath it. If that foundation becomes compromised, it can begin to fail which makes the entire home vulnerable to major damage. A home’s gutters and downspouts are a critical line of defense against foundation damage.
Why is water so harmful to foundations?
Water is a major enemy for a home and its foundation. It is a major reason for foundation damage and failure.
- Flowing water can erode the soil around the home. Water can pick up soil as it moves. Over time, the amount of soil around your foundation caused by runoff can cause erosion around the foundation. This can create depressed areas where water will accumulate during any rain. It also exposes the foundation wall to the outdoor elements.
- Excessive water flowing in and around foundation walls can cause excessive settling. When the water works its way deep enough, it will start shifting the soil beneath the foundation. This can cause the foundation to settle deeper in one spot than another. This can cause one part of the foundation to sag, which, in turn, can cause the structure above to start sagging.
- Water soaking into the soil can cause the foundation walls to bulge. Some soils do not drain well. When water soaks into the soil, it may start to pool and accumulate against the foundation. As the amount of pooled water builds, it applies pressure to the outside of the foundation walls. This can start to push the wall in, creating a bulge that can besee from the inside. In areas which get freezing temperatures over the winter, this pressure can be greater if the water freezes.
- With enough pressure, water can start seeping through the walls into your basement or crawl space. As the pressure of pooled water builds, the water will want to find a place to go. If there are any microscopic cracks in your foundation wall, the water is going to start working its way through the wall. You will see moisture on your walls and maybe even pooling on the floor. This can create problems with humidity in the house as well as mold and mildew growth.