Many of the homes and structures in California are built on concrete slabs. For California residents, there are a lot of advantages to having a slab foundation – they minimize the risk of damage from flooding and gas leaks, they protect homes from termites, and insects, they are less expensive than basements or crawl spaces, and they offer added stability for the home. However, slab foundations often develop issues that can jeopardize the structural integrity of the entire home.

Common Problems for Concrete Slab Foundations

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Upheaval

When the soil under the slab swells, it can cause the slab to heave. This can happen when the soil absorbs water, causing it to expand and push on the concrete slab above. A poorly constructed foundation could also lead to slab upheaval. Even a root from a tree or shrub growing under the foundation can push on the concrete and cause upheaval in the slab. This is especially common in times of drought when thirsty roots are looking for water. Look for uneven floors and walls or sloping in countertops or floors to see if your slab has an upheaval problem.

repair-concrete-slab-foundation-problems-ca

Cracks

Slab cracks are a very common problem in California. If the foundation heaves, it may crack. Settling or shifting foundations can also lead to foundation cracks. If the soil underneath the foundation expands and pushes on the concrete, it might cause the slab to crack. Voids under the foundation can also cause the slab to crack. When the slab sinks because the ground underneath can no longer support it, the concrete might crack as it settles into the void. If you see slab cracks, determine how severe they are by measuring them. If they are larger than 1/16 of an inch, contact a foundation repair expert. Foundation cracks can lead to water leakage or pest entry.

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Shifting

If there are piers under your foundation, they might shift, causing the above foundation to shift as well. This can happen when the piers are not properly installed and changes in the soil or the moisture content of the ground cause them to move. Swelling or shifting of the soil around your home can also cause a slab foundation without piers to move or shift. If you see bulging floors, sticking doors, or interior cracks, your foundation might be shifting. Don’t let an uneven slab become a problem and contribute to trips and falls in your home or business–call our experienced team for a solution right away.

repair-concrete-slab-foundation-problems-ca

Settlement

Every home settles – it is part of the natural aging process of a home. However, rapid settlement or uneven settlement of a slab can result in serious foundation problems. Sometimes, voids or gaps open up underneath your home due to erosion or soil shrinkage. When the soil dries up, it shrinks, causing it to fall away and leaving holes