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Whether the damage is caused by changes in soil moisture content, weak native clay, or poorly compacted backfill, get your home back on solid ground through Foundation Supportworks' vast network of certified contractors.
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Why is my home settling, and how did this happen?
Learn about three of the most common causes below.
Drying & Shrinking Soil
Foundation soils usually dry and shrink in two scenarios:
During prolonged dry periods, the soils around your home may begin to dry. Clay soils shrink considerably when they dry, creating a void between the structure and the soil it's relying on to support it. When this happens, your foundation settles, as well, frequently resulting in structural damage.
Wetting & Softening of Soil
Foundation soils usually wet and soften in three scenarios:
Heavy Rain & Flooding: When clay soils contact water, they retain it and become very soft. Soft soil does not bear loads well, causing heavy objects to sink into it.
Poor Drainage: If water is allowed to "pond" next to the home due to poor soil grading, clogged gutters or some other factor, soils absorb the water. If soils around the home are clay, they will soften, often causing the home to sink.
Plumbing Leaks & Broken Water Lines: Plumbing leaks under or around a home can saturate soils around it, potentially weakening their load-bearing capacity. Often, plumbing leaks push soil out from under the home, creating a void into which the structure can sink.
Compression of Poorly Compacted Soil
To make a level surface upon which to build your foundation, builders may use soil from another location to fill hollow or depressed areas. This recently excavated "fill" soil can be looser and lighter than the dense, hard-packed virgin soils already present. To compensate, the builder will compact the fill soil thoroughly before placing a foundation. If this compaction is not done, or is done poorly, your home's weight may cause the soil to compress, leading to foundation settlement issues.