A concrete slab foundation can last a long time if it is well-built and properly maintained. But even the most solid foundation can crack if subjected to unrelenting stress and pressure.
A concrete slab foundation is a common type of foundation used in many homes. A concrete slab is a flat, horizontal concrete surface that is typically four to six inches thick. The slab is poured on top of a layer of gravel or sand, which helps with drainage and prevents the slab from shifting. Once the concrete dries, it forms a strong foundation for the home.
Unfortunately, there are many reasons why concrete slab foundations crack, and when left unchecked, they can eventually lead to a significant amount of damage and expensive foundation repairs.
5 Reasons Concrete Slabs Crack
Concrete slabs crack for many reasons. Many of them are preventable, but others are simply out of your control. Regardless of the cause, cracks can lead to bigger problems for your home if they aren’t repaired. Here are five reasons concrete slabs crack:
1. Structure Settlement
When a home is first built, the soil is not always compacted correctly, which can lead to settling over time. The weight of the house on the foundation can also cause the soil to settle. As the soil settles, it puts pressure on the foundation, which can cause the concrete to crack.
2. Soil Expansion
Soil expansion occurs when the soil absorbs water and swells. This is a natural process that can cause cracked concrete slabs. The expansion puts pressure on the foundation, which can cause the concrete to crack.
3. Excessive Water/Soil Washout
Soil washout is the removal of soil from a location due to the force of water. Excessive water can lead to cracked slabs in a few ways. For example, if the soil around your home’s foundation is not compacted correctly, it can form voids. These voids can fill with water, putting additional pressure on the foundation and causing cracks.
4. Climate Extremes
Climate extremes, both hot and cold, can cause concrete slabs to crack. As the temperature changes, concrete expands and contracts. This can put stress on the foundation and cause the concrete to crack. In extreme cases, the foundation will shift, which can cause even more damage.
5. Under-Slab Plumbing Problems
The plumbing under your slab is subject to a lot of stress and pressure, and if it is not installed correctly, it can cause the concrete to splinter and crack. Additionally, if the plumbing leaks, it can erode the soil around the foundation, which can also lead to cracks.
Worried About Your Concrete Slab Foundation? Pinnacle Can Help
These are only a few of the many reasons concrete slab foundations crack. If you’re concerned about the condition of your foundation or if you’ve noticed cracks, have it inspected by a professional.
Pinnacle Foundation Repair has been inspecting and repairing foundations in the Dallas-Fort Worth area for 60 years. We can help you determine the cause of the cracks and recommend the best course of repair.
Contact us today to schedule your assessment if you’re concerned about your concrete slab foundation.