Why is My Home’s Foundation Sinking?

Sep 2, 2023 | Uncategorized

Truth is that every home’s foundation has many layers to it and every home is dealing with a unique set of soil variables specific to the lot where it’s built. Despite the variety of foundation problems that can occur, several common factors contribute to foundation issues in North Texas.

The biggest issue right now is HEAT!

The National Weather Service reports that this summer was 3rd hottest & the 4th driest in DFW history. Those 2 factors alone have disrupted the #1 rule in home foundation maintenance which is “maintaining balance”!

The season’s heat and lack of moisture is causing our North Texas clay soil to shrink and open up like never before! This means any structure, whether it be a home, fence or street sign can end up being subject to the soil shrinkage & falling through.
This is particularly concerning for homeowners in North Texas, as the vast majority of homes in the region—estimated at over 90%—are built on concrete slab foundations. These slab foundations, while cost-effective and suitable for the local climate, are especially vulnerable to the effects of soil shrinkage.
When the clay soil beneath a slab foundation loses moisture and shrinks, it can create voids under the foundation. This lack of support can cause the concrete slab to crack, settle unevenly, or even partially collapse in severe cases. The extreme weather conditions exacerbate this problem, as the intense heat accelerates moisture loss from the soil, leading to more dramatic shrinkage.

For homes built on these concrete slabs, the effects can manifest as cracks in walls, uneven floors, doors that no longer close properly, or gaps between walls and ceilings. The cyclic nature of this process—with soil expanding during wetter periods and shrinking in dry heat—can cause cumulative damage over time if not addressed.

Just last week I was watching my nephew’s soccer game & looked up to see the stadium light poles sinking & leaning at 45 degree angles.  Your home is no different… with balance disrupted it can begin to sink, lean, or tilt.

Foundation sinking can look like different things depending on the home. Many 1-story wide footprint homes on evenly shaped lots will appear to push out on the perimeters in what looks like an “umbrella effect”. Other homes with smaller footprints on uneven lots will often appear to lean or tilt in one direction often parallel to the grade of the lot. All of these are considered to be problematic if the home measures outside of “acceptable tolerances”.

If indeed you believe your home to be sinking, please give AlphaLift a call today! We’ll come out, inspect your home, and provide documented measurements that will show what exactly your home is doing. Many times the house isn’t moving much compared to what it may seem and sometimes may not be moving at all! Either way you’ll have documentation to compare against as time moves forward.

Whatever the issue, our team is here to help make sure sinking doesn’t get the best of you & your home!

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