Water is responsible for most of the foundation problems experienced by homeowners. With rain being one of the main sources of water, there are various ways rain can damage your foundation, both directly and indirectly.
Some damages might be sudden but most of the foundation damages are gradual and take some time before they are noticeable.
Ways Rain Can Damage Your Foundation
Pooling and Flooding
After a heavy downpour of rain, it’s not unusual to see pools of water on your yard or a few leaks in your house. Pooling water shouldn’t be a problem unless it’s very close to your foundation or it takes too long to drain. If water is allowed to pool near your foundation, it will seep into your foundation wall and weaken it. Rain water will also cause flooding in your foundation by seeping through clogged gutters or through a bad roof. To prevent water from pooling very close to your foundation, you can slant the soil or slab around your home so that water can drain away from the foundation. Using gutters, downspouts and french drains will also help prevent pooling and flooding when it rains.
Expansive soils is one of the ways rain can damage your foundation. Naturally clay soils expand and contract depending on the moisture content level. It’s because of this expansive property that houses that are built on clay soils tend to experience a lot of foundation damage. After rainfall, the clay soils surrounding the foundation will absorb the rainwater and expand therefore pushing against the foundation walls and cracking them in the process. To avoid foundation damage due to the expansion and contracting of soils, the moisture content level should be be kept consistent by either watering the soils when it’s too dry or by using techniques that prevent water from draining into the soils near the foundation.
Fungal and Insect Infestation
Moisture caused by rain encourages fungal growth and insect infestation which is one of the ways rain can damage your foundation indirectly. If your foundation is not properly waterproofed, chances are that after rainfall you might have pooling water or wet walls in your crawlspace or basement. A wet basement or crawlspace encourages the growth of fungi and the infestation of insects and rodents. Fungi such as dry rot will literally eat away wood joists if the conditions are moist enough. Termites alone account for billions worth of damage to property, so any conditions which encourage termite habitation should be dealt with. Waterproofing your foundation and treating the exposed wood will help to stop the termites from destroying your foundation.
Contact a Professional
In order to deal with or to prevent the aforementioned problems that rain brings about, you need to contact a professional foundation repair contractor. If you think your foundation is compromised or you just want to prevent any foundation damage, contact California Foundation Works on 323-418-2239.