Here’s what we know about concrete!

There are two things you know for sure about concrete:  it will be hard, and it will crack!   Cracks in concrete foundations and walls are fairly common.  Some cracks are the result of “shrinkage” of the concrete that is a normal part of the concrete’s curing process, and in such cases, the cracks will not pose a structural concern to the building.  However, some cracks are fundamentally dangerous, for example, when the cracks are very large, or if you run your finger across a foundation crack and find that that the foundation is uneven.  In such cases, you must obtain the advice of a foundation cracks repair expert who can remediate these issues for you!

Why do cracks happen?

Big cracks can indicate that a building’s walls are buckling, or that there are vertical movements in the foundation, which are usually caused from soil underneath the foundation swelling and shrinking.  In the Los Angeles region, our homes and buildings are typically built over clay soil which expands during our rainy season, and shrinks during our dry seasons.  When water intrusion from improperly draining rainwater or groundwater is added to the mix and saturates your foundation, you have a recipe for a “concrete-cracking” disaster!  In such instances, even a newer and well-built concrete foundation can experience severe problems over a period of just a few years!

What happens when groundwater and rainwater intrude into a building?

First and foremost, groundwater and rainwater that intrudes into a building can inundate its foundation and foundation footing and over time, cause the concrete reinforcing steel to rust, expand, and crack the surrounding concrete.  Such a level of high humidity can also invite all sorts of insects and critters in, trigger mold and mildew to grow, cause floors to rot, and waste energy by increasing both heating and cooling costs!

There are no two ways about it – homeowners and commercial property owners must combat water intrusion immediately to protect their valuable investments and safeguard the health and safety of the individuals who live and work in such buildings!

Why fix issues now, can’t it wait?

Buyers of homes and commercial properties view a building’s wet basement and cracked foundation in the same way:  “this one is a “fixer-upper” and therefore should cost less!”  Studies show that on average, buildings with wet basements and cracked foundations experience at least a 10% reduction in their value.  What does this mean?  Just look at the table below!

If your building is worth Not fixing it reduces value by:
$   750,000 $  75,000
$1,000,000 $100,000
$1,500,000 $150,000
$2,000,000 $200,000


So, you get the idea, not fixing these issues today will cost you later on!  And these calculations don’t even take into account the aggravation you will have from living and working in such conditions, or the extreme structural damage that can happen when a property sustains major damage, for example due to an earthquake that causes a foundation to fail and the structure above it to collapse!

Water damage to a foundation is one area where early warning and maintenance is important, so don’t delay, have your foundation inspected!  call Weinstein Construction today at (800) 862-6582 for a free inspection and review of your home’s foundation needs!  We are also expert drain contractors and can help with basement waterproofing, leaky basement repair, basement wall sealing, and French drain installation!