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Causes of Foundation Failure

Causes of Foundation Failure


Hot and dry conditions may cause soil to pull away from the foundation. Settlement due to this foundation moisture imbalance could cause cracks to appear throughout the structure. When there is a period of hot and dry conditions, the soil shrinks beneath the foundation This shrinking soil will create gaps next to the foundation which allows the foundation to shift and settle.


Tree roots could dehydrate the soil beneath a home causing soil shrinkage and settlement of the home. Maturing trees and bushes in close to a home or building is a common cause of foundation settlement. As the trees and bushes mature, their root system demands more water. These roots will draw the moisture from beneath a home’s foundation and cause the soil to shrink. This results in the settlement of the home.

Plumbing Leaks

Water from leaky plumbing is often a major contributor to foundation problems. When excess water is present due to poor drainage or plumbing leaks, the soil supporting your foundation can erode. When a plumbing leak occurs under the foundation, the moisture content becomes distorted. When moisture is added to the soil because of a plumbing leak, the soil and foundation will move causing foundation settlement. The degree of movement depends on the soil type, soil density, soil moisture content prior to the leak and the length of time over which the leak has occurred.


Improper drainage will lead to excess moisture build up, which could erode or consolidate soils. Excessive moisture may cause upheaval or settlement. Poor drainage conditions around your foundation can cause the over-saturation of the soil which causes instability around the foundation. Once the improper drainage has caused damage to the foundation, it is too late. If improper drainage has caused foundation failure, contact the professionals at Atlas Master Companies for an inspection and estimate

Poor Building Site Preparation

Cut and fill situations, where soil is removed from part of the lot and stacked on another, must have proper soil stabilization before the structure is constructed; otherwise unexpected movements of the soil beneath the foundation may occur. If the builder failed to prepare the soil before your home’s foundation was poured, it can case foundation settlement..Loose un-compacted soil starts to compact on its own and then the foundation starts to settle into the ground.

Poor Ground Preparation

Cut and fill situations should be properly prepared before structure is started or it may result in improperly compacted soil beneath the foundation. Soft, low density soils and improperly compacted soil beneath a foundation is one of the leading causes of foundation failure. The grading of the soil should always divert water away from your home to that the water is not allowed to seep under the foundation.

Poor Soil Conditions

Poor soil, organic components, debris, etc., may cause expansion or consolidation, which contribute to foundation failures.

If you are experiencing foundation failure, Atlas Masters Companies has the solutions. Steel push piers are sometimes referred to as micro piles or resistance piers. These piers are driven hydraulically into the soil using the structural weight of the building as a reaction force. A friction reduction collar is attached to the lead section of the pier pipe which creates an opening in the soil that has a larger diameter than the pier pipe. This reduces the skin friction on the pier pipe as it is driven into the soil. Helical torque anchors are part of the product line of helical piers, steel piers and foundation repair products. These helical torque anchors consists of a shaft made from solid square steel bar or tubular steel. One or more helical plates are welded to the shaft. Helical piers are ideal for application where these is a need to resist a tension or compressive force or both. These screw anchors are ideal for foundation repair. Upon installation, the helical piers are load tested to prove their capacities. All of the products that the professionals at Atlas Master Companies uses are made by Earth Contact Products (ECP, the leading manufacturer of foundation repair products in the industry. For all of your foundation repair needs, contact the experts at Atlas Master Companies.

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