April Showers Bring…Wet Basements

Most of the Southeastern Home Solutions service area, including Birmingham and Chattanooga, has been inundated with torrential rainfalls during the month of April. The rains were welcomed at first to help with drought conditions, but the showers quickly became too much of a good thing as streets and basements began flooding. Some areas reported over 5 inches of rain in just one day and there was just nowhere for the rain to go in that short of time.

Foundation Damage Caused By Flooding

There are several ways that excess water can damage the foundation of your home or business. Oversaturated soil can push against the basement walls with extreme amounts of pressure. This can call foundation walls to bow, lean, or even collapse.

As the water pushes against the walls, even a hairline crack can allow water to seep in. Wet basements can be susceptible to mold and mildew and will attract bugs and other pests. Your belongings and furnishings can be damaged by the intruding water, in addition to weakening the structural material of your home.

Fortunately, there are solutions to repairing foundation damage caused by rain and flooding. Southeastern Home Solutions can repair cracks, bowing or leaning walls, and other foundation damage.

The Best Defense is Being Prepared

There are some steps you can do to help lower the chance of water entering your basement:

  • Clean gutters of debris and leaves, so they empty correctly
  • Make sure downspouts are emptying at least 10 feet from the foundation
  • Check that the grade outside your home is draining properly
  • Repair unlevel driveways and sidewalks so water doesn’t pool against the walls
  • Install a drain or window cover in basement windows

You can also help keep your basement dry by using a dehumidifier. Keeping the air dry in the basement will help reduce the chance of mold and foul odors moving through the house.

Time to Call in the Pros?

Waiting until your basement is full of water is not the time to think about waterproofing. With the amount of rainfall we experienced the last couple of weeks, water can come in from many locations like basement windows, and floor and wall cracks.

Before you start any repairs you’ll want to get a free inspection from a waterproofing expert, like those at Southeastern Home Solutions. They can determine what steps are needed to keep your basement dry and your home safe and healthy.

You may need drains or a sump pump installed. There are several types of drains and pumps, so you need to get a professional opinion of what is best for your situation. A battery back-up pump will give you peace of mind if the power goes out, your main pump fails, or it can’t keep up with rain by itself.

The way the weather has been acting, it’s only a matter of time before we have another large rain event. Make sure your home and basement are ready to handle what Mother Nature throws at you.

Why Choose SHS?

There are many options in the area when it comes to foundation repair and waterproofing contractors. How do you choose the one that is right for you?

Southeastern Home Solutions offers a free inspection and quote, so it will cost you nothing to have us come out and look at your home. We have worked hard over the years to earn our reputation for hard work, outstanding customer service, quality craftsmanship, and treating our customers with integrity and honesty. But don’t take our word for it, here are the words of our customers:

foundation repair

waterproofing

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We’d love to hear what you have to say. Click here to share your stories or go to our Facebook page. We are dedicated to providing you the best foundation repair, waterproofing, and concrete leveling services in the area. We look forward to hearing from you!

concrete leveling, waterproofing, foundation repair

Drought Followed By Storms Can Lead To Foundation Damage

 

drought, foundation Living in drought conditions is tough all around. You have to budget your water usage, crops and animals suffer, gardens and lawns look sickly, and the clay soil begins to shrink. When it finally begins to rain, you may think all is well, but unfortunately, that isn’t the case.

After a long drought, like the one we’ve been experiencing in this area, a good rain seems like the perfect cure. However, when your home is built on expansive clay, the soil moves a lot according to the amount of water it contains. The soil will shrink and expand, causing problems for your foundation walls.

Moving Soil Can Damage Your Foundation

If the weather was the same all the time, expansive soil wouldn’t be a problem, as the soil would remain the same all the time. Unfortunately, the amount of rain can fluctuate a lot, as we’ve experienced recently. Even in normal years, the soil can expand and contract greatly, impacting your home’s foundation.

Since this drought has gone for so long, the negative impacts of a soaking rain are amplified. The soil will drink in that new rainfall and swell like a sponge. However, the soil that is under the foundation will remain dryer than the soil around the outside of the home. The expanding soil will lift the foundation, causing cracks and other damage.

Before damage occurs, there are some things you can do to lessen the impact that expansive soil can do to your home’s foundation.

Protect Your Foundation From Damage

Although we can’t control the weather, there are things you can do to protect your home from expansive soil damaging your foundation. The first thing you can do is take a walk around your property. You are the first line of defense when it comes to protecting your home. Here are a few steps you can take to keep your home stable.

Check Your Gutters and Downspouts

rain, foundationMake sure that your gutters are free of leaves and other debris. A kid’s ball or frisbee can clog up the works just as bad as some sticks and leaves. If the gutters don’t drain properly, they may spill over the sides, causing water to pool around the foundation. Make sure your downspouts are emptying far enough way from the foundation that the water isn’t running back towards the house. Also, make sure the downspout is draining properly, a dented or leaking spout isn’t going to help you protect your home.

Make Sure Your Concrete Slabs Are Even

An uneven slab on your driveway, patio, or sidewalk isn’t only a tripping hazard, it can prevent water from draining properly. Sometimes it isn’t as obvious as a big gap between slabs, you may have to go out after a rainstorm to see if water is pooling or draining incorrectly. Southeastern Home Solutions can help you with an uneven slab, contact us to learn more about our concrete leveling services.

Keep Your Grade Up

Just like school, grades are still important. In this case, the grade of the soil surrounding your foundation. For every 10 feet away from the foundation, the soil should drop at least 6 inches. This will keep rainwater from running back into the foundation and draining away from the surrounding soil. Also, make sure that any landscaping around the home is two feet or more away from the walls of your home. You want to do everything you can to keep the water from pooling against the foundation.

Foundation Repairs From Southeastern Home Solutions

If you do find that you are experiencing water damage to your basement or crawlspace or foundation damage from expanding soil, the experts at Southeastern Home Solutions is here to help. We’ll inspect your home for free and determine the best methods to making your home stable and secure again.

We can assist with wall supports and crawlspace jacks, in addition to interior waterproofing. We already mentioned concrete leveling, so Southeastern Home Solutions is your one stop for all your foundation and waterproofing needs. Don’t let a dry spell and torrential rains keep you from enjoying your home. Contact us today and learn more about all the services Southeastern Home Solutions can provide you.

Causes of Foundation Problems

foundation damageFoundation Damage

There are many ways that your foundation can be damaged. You could have bowing walls, cracks, sinking foundations, and more. Just as there are many foundation problems, there are just as many causes. The biggest culprit, though, is water. Too much or too little can cause the soil to fail at its job, which is supporting the foundation of your home or business.

There will always be some movement to the soil, due to the environment and the weight of the structure, but it’s when the foundation shifts unevenly, those problems are encountered. Poor compaction during construction, swelling soil due to high amounts of water, or shrinking soil due to drought conditions can all cause problems to the foundation.

Poor Construction Practices

When a building is under construction, soil is moved and disturbed. If the earth is not properly compacted and made solid, the foundation can settle unevenly as the soil condenses under the weight of the structure. The same damage can occur, if the building sits on two different kinds of soil. If part of it rests on bedrock, while the other is resting on an expansive soil, like clay, the foundation may sink unevenly. This will cause stress on the foundation, especially slab foundations.

Another situation that can occur during construction is the soil having uneven soil moisture levels. The contractors pouring the slab need to make sure the soil is at the right moisture content. If the soil is too dry, the soil around the outer edges of the foundation will become wetter when it rains or the snow melts. This will cause the edge of the foundation to lose its support and possibly damage the foundation. On the other hand, if the soil is too wet, the outer edges will dry first and the moisture under the center of the slab will remain. This can cause the foundation to settle unevenly.

Drought Conditions

If your area experiences a dry spell, the drought conditions can cause the soil to contract. The foundation may settle, as the soil compresses. This can occur unevenly if the soil dries quicker on the perimeter of the foundation than in the center.

Oversaturated Soil

floor crackSoil with too much moisture is the most damaging of the foundation damage causes. The soil can expand, pushing against the slab floor or the walls, causing them to crack or bow. Oversaturated soil also has the most causes, some natural, some man-made. Soil can gain too much moisture from sources like heavy rainfalls or snowmelts, leaking plumbing, poor drainage from gutters and downspouts, improper irrigation for landscaping, and other causes.

You can walk around the perimeter of your building and make sure that downspouts are discharging far enough away from the foundation. You can also look for pooling against the foundation from landscaping or uneven driveways or patios. If the ground next to the foundation isn’t sloping away from the structure, you can also have problems with proper drainage.

Foundation Solutions

If you have foundation damage, you may think you have an unfixable or cost-prohibitive problem. Fortunately for you, you have Southeastern Home Solutions at your service. We can repair bowing and leaning walls, cracking and chipping masonry, cracked floors, walls, and foundations, and more.

The longer you wait, the more time and effort will be needed to repair the damage, and with that comes more expensive. It’s very important that you contact as soon as you suspect foundation damage. We will give you a free estimate and inspection and work with you to restore the structural integrity of your building. Contact us today to learn more.

Tree Roots vs Your Foundation

Getting to the Root of the Problem

Since tree roots are underground, it’s hard to know if they are going to be a problem until they become one. Besides physically pushing against structures, roots can drain water out of the soil and dehydrate it. When a root is killed, it will decay and can cause the surrounding soil to collapse, leaving the supporting soil lacking.

tree roots, foundation damageIt’s nice to have a shady tree protecting your home from the sun and the elements, but you have to make sure that it is far enough away from your home so that the roots won’t affect your foundation. Trees with invasive roots can damage pipes and foundations. If the tree root senses any moisture, it will seek it out.

Trees should be planted at least 20-50 feet from your home, to keep the roots from reaching your foundation. Some of the most popular trees are the worst offenders. Poplar, willow, silver maples, and American elms all love moisture and have roots that can disrupt sewer lines, push against foundations, and lift sidewalks and driveways.

Fortunately, there are many trees that have roots that are considered non-invasive. These include the southern red oak, the amur maple, and the yellow buckeye. These trees all give off ample shade, while growing relatively quickly. Your local nursery will be able to help you choose what trees you should plant.

Foundation Problems

As stated earlier, roots can push against your foundation, collapse the soil around it and cause other damage. The most common occurrence is when the roots drain the moisture from underneath the foundation. The soil condenses, causing the foundation to lose its support. This can lead to cracks in the foundation or walls to bow or lean. In addition, if the moisture levels fluctuate, the soil will expand and contract, working the foundation and weakening it.

Signs of Foundation Damage

There are many early warning signs when it comes to foundation damage before you get to structural damage. You should walk around your property and look for these indicators:

If you come across any of these red flags, you need to call a foundation expert like the professionals at Southeastern Home Solutions as soon as possible. We will provide you with a free inspection and determine not only the cause of your foundation problems but implement a solution. We want you and your family to be secure and safe in your home.

Don’t let a shady tree ruin your home, call us today and let us help you keep your peace of mind.

Southeastern Home Solutions Supports Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Join us in the Fight Against Breast Cancer!1-in-8

Southeastern Home Solutions is joining the fight against breast cancer. Most people have been touched by breast cancer in one way or another, including our families. We wanted to join the fight and we are hoping you will join us. For the month of October, through the work that we do, we are collecting to fight the disease. We will be donating 10% of our total revenue to a nominated breast cancer-related charity at the end of the month. Nominations for the charity will be taken through Facebook. So visit our Facebook Page and nominate the breast cancer charity you feel strongly about. Then watch at the end of the month for an update on our Facebook page to see the results!

 

We are Proud to Support Such an Important Cause! To learn more about the fight against breast cancer go to www.breastcancer.org, or www.cancer.gov.

 

 

 

 

 

Project Search Graduation – Huntsville, AL

Southeastern Home Solutions

Sponsors Project Search Graduation

At Southeastern Home Solutions, we recently sponsored the graduation ceremony for Project SEARCH in Huntsville, Alabama. The ceremony was held at Huntsville Hospital on May 17, 2016.

We are proud to be part of such a great project. Project SEARCH is a high school transition program. It is led by businesses, and is a 1 year program to transition people from school to work. The process takes place at the workplace. The program allows participants to be immersed in a combination of classroom instruction with a focus on career exploration. Their goal is to be hands-on so that participants get a real idea of what goes on at that workplace.

Again, we are proud to support such a great local opportunity. Congratulations to the graduates!

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