Fix Your Home NOW & Pay Later


What Causes Foundation Failure?

Causes of Foundation Failure

AMC 911 serves the entire Hampton Roads Area

Have you ever wondered what causes foundation failure? Over time, foundations can deteriorate, settle, or sink into the ground due to a variety of issues.

Here in Virginia, we see a lot of problems that lead to foundation failure.

Here are the top 6 issues that we see:

1. Poor Drainage

Some examples of poor drainage include short downspouts, clogged gutters, or lack of waterproofing.

Poor drainage conditions around your foundation can cause the oversaturation of the soil which causes instability around the foundation.

If improper drainage has caused foundation problems in your home, contact the professionals at Atlas Master Companies for an inspection and estimate.

2. Weather Conditions

Hot and dry conditions may cause the soil around your home to shrink and pull away from the foundation. When this happens, cracks may appear throughout the structure. The shrinking soil will create gaps next to the foundation which allows the foundation to sink and settle into the ground.

3. Poor Soil Conditions

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

4. Transpiration

Tree roots could dehydrate the soil beneath a home causing soil shrinkage and settlement of the home. Maturing trees and bushes 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.

drainage5. Plumbing Leaks

Water from leaky plumbing is often a major contributor to foundation problems. When excess water is present due to 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.

6. Poor Building Site & Ground Preparation

Cut and fill situations, where the 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 cause foundation settlement. Loose, not properly compacted soil starts to compact on its own and then the foundation starts to settle into the ground.

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.

Solutions for Foundation Failure

Unfortunately, foundation problems are all too common, especially in the Virginia Beach and Hampton Roads area. If you have experienced structural issues, it is important to get them taken care of before things get worse and complete foundation failure becomes an issue.

If you are experiencing foundation failure, Atlas Master Companies has professional solutions for you. We install steel push piers and other foundation repair systems to get your foundation back to permanent stability. Take a look at our foundation solutions to see which method would be best for you.

Atlas Master Companies will work with you to find the best foundation repair solution for your needs and budget. Contact us today to get started with your free quote.


  • AMC911 Foundation & Waterproofing Systems, Foundation Repair & House Leveling, Norfolk, VA
  • Atlas Structural Solutions, Inc. - Best of HomeAdvisor Award Winner



Copyrighted Image