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Close up of stair step cracking on brick wall

5 Signs Your Foundation Might be Settling

Foundation settlement is common, but how do you know it's happening? Learn more about the signs you need to keep an eye out for.


Foundation settling is caused by the soil beneath your home moving and shifting. The problem may be unavoidable in older homes but can be remedied with a number of different solutions. Keep an eye out for these tell-tale signs of foundation settling.

Signs on the outside:

Close up of stair step cracking on brick wall

1. Stair-step cracking. 

his is most commonly seen in brick or concrete homes. As the soil settles the foundation is pulled in different directions causing cracks in the most vulnerable areas.

2. Chimney separation.

If a home’s foundation is settling, many times chimneys will separate from the home’s foundation. It is one of the most serious and threatening results of settling and should be taken care of immediately.

Chimney separating from home showing foundation issues

Signs on the inside:

Before shot of separating window from foundation damage

1. Doors and windows out of square.

Windows and doors may start to tilt, curve, or move as the foundation settles in different areas. These areas become the weakest points of the home.

2. Cracks extending from corners of doors and windows.

Many times, these cracks will be covered or caulked up by homeowners temporarily masking the problem. If the source of the crack is not taken care of, the problem will only worsen.

cracks around window on the outside of the home

3. Separation of door or window from framing or finish.

If a home’s foundation is settling, walls can be pulled away from the window or door frame creating a gap. This problem is easy to spot and should be given attention.

If you can say “yes” to any of these problems, Tar Heel Basement Systems has the solution for you. Contact us to request a free, in-home, no-obligation evaluation. Our team will pay you a visit and prove to be your “heroes in the home”.

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