Basement Wall Cracks Causes and Solutions

Tuesday, May 22nd, 2018 by Jessica McDaniel


Walls of a basement are built in a large hole dug by original home builders. Once the basement walls were completed, builders filled the empty space around the walls with dirt, called backfill soil. Backfill soil will eventually settle and may create basement wall cracks which allows water to leak through these cracks. These problems can cause a lot of damage to a homeowner’s basement.  

Causes 

Loose Soil- basement wall cracks1. Clogged Footing Drains 

A clogged footing drain causes hydrostatic pressure impacting basement walls, creating cracks to form. A footing drain is a pipe designed with holes installed on the outside of your home. The holes designed in the drain are meant for water to enter to make sure no water gathers near the foundation; unfortunately, backfill soil enters the holes and clogs the drain.  

 2. Hydrostatic Pressure 

As a result of having clogged footing drain, water begins to gather and pool near the foundation. This standing water will start to put pressure against the foundation, causing your basement walls to bow or tilt, and ultimately crack.

3. Basement Wall Cracks 

When basement walls crack, it allows water to leak through. A wet basement can cause many problems to a home, and if a homeowner notices cracks or leaking walls they need to call for an inspection immediately. 

4. Settled Soil  

When backfill soil begins to settle, it will cause a slope towards the foundation of a home where water wilpool..As this water gathers near the foundation, it will cause hydrostatic pressure. Additionally, gutters should face away from a home to make sure water is not gathering near the foundation.   

5. Nor’easters 

These storms bring rain followed by flooding, which can be the cause of a wet basement. As a contributor to hydrostatic pressure and wet basements, Nor’easter storms tend to happen during the months of October – March, but can happen during any time of the year.  

6. Hurricanes 

Another type of storm that is contributor to hydrostatic pressure and basement wall cracks are hurricanes. These storms are associated with high winds, heavy rainfall, and a great amount of flooding, which factor in creating hydrostatic pressure. Before a hurricane season hits, take time to read these helpful hurricane tips.  

Flooded Basement- Basement Wall Cracks

Solutions 

Cracks that appear in basement walls will cause a lot of water damage to a basement. Tar Heel Basement Systems can provide homes with solutions for these basement water problems.  

1.    Dehumidifier 

Installing a dehumidifier in a basement will prevent the basement from becoming wet and damp. Wet or damp basements create mold growth, rotten wood, fungus, and dust miteswhich are all dangerous to a homeowners’ health and home. 

2. French Drain Perimeter System 

Another waterproofing solution is Tar Heel’s French drain system, the BasementGutter Drainage System. The design of the BasementGutter Drainage System is designed to separate the soil underneath a basement floor to prevent clogging. Tar Heel’s French Drain System is designed to trap water leakage through wall and floor joints and is clog-free. This drainage system is serviceable year- round, plus includes a 20-year warranty, and affordable for homeowners.  

3. Sump Pumps 

Sump pumps are another product which helps keep a home’s basement dry. Tar Heel Basement Systems has multiple sump pump systems to offer to homeowners, to include the SafeDri TripleSafeSump pump, SafeDri SmartSump pump, or the SafeDri Supersump pump system. These products will alert homeowners if flooding occurs in their basements, and the airtight floor drain will help keep water out of the basement.  

4. Foundation Wall Anchors 

Water will enter through basement wall cracks and ultimately leave basements wet and flooded. For cracked basement walls, Foundation Wall Anchors are products designed to counteract against hydrostatic pressure that pushes against basement walls.   

5. Carbon Fiber Wall Repair System 

The Carbon Wall Fiber Repair System is a product designed to restore the value of a home by providing a solution to restore homeowner’s basement bowing or tilting walls. These fibers are 10 times stronger than steel, and the flexibility of the fibers allows them to mold to basement walls in order to stabilize the walls.  

 

If you believe your home has cracks in the walls of the basement or you are having wet basement problems, call to schedule a free inspection or click here. 

 

About the author
Jessica McDaniel is the Senior Brand Ambassador at Tar Heel Basement Systems; authoring website blogs, video and widget content, as well as social media postings. You may see Jessica out at one of the many festivals or home shows that the company participates in as she loves to interact with the community. She lives in Lexington, the BBQ Capital of NC, with her fiancé and rescue pets.