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How to Fix Cracks in Concrete Foundations

Author: igvsupport
Date: February 10, 2023

Your foundation supports the entire weight of your home. It's normal to jump to concern if you find cracks in the concrete. It's also normal to find cracks in the concrete. Cracks in foundations are one of the most common foundation problems.

Foundations are rigid, so it's possible for them to crack at one point or another. These cracks can be small or large. Small cracks may look unappealing, but they don't always put your home in direct harm. Bigger cracks can show larger movements. This means they have a greater potential of harming your home's structural integrity. Small cracks can also transform into larger cracks over time. It's important to know that foundation cracks, big or small, will not go away on their own.

Filling in the cracks and stopping them from spreading is essential. Failing to do so can cause serious structural issues to your home. So, how do you know when to fix these cracks, and how do you fix them?

Determining When Foundation Cracks Need Repaired

A foolproof way to know if a foundation crack is causing harm to your home is to have it looked at by a professional. There are a few rules of thumb you can use to help you decide if you should worry or not until then, though. 

As we said, minor cracks don't usually pose a risk of harming your home's structure. Not right away, anyway. This is why people say you don't always need to repair minor cracks if you don't mind the eye sore it creates. While it's true that these cracks don't put your home at risk of harm right away, they still need to be repaired. Small cracks can transform into large cracks. Even if it takes a while, it will happen. Minor cracks are cheaper to repair. While you think you're saving money by not repairing, you'll actually lose money in the long run. The longer you wait, the more you will end up paying.

One thing you can do is track the growth progression of the foundation crack. To monitor a crack, make a pencil mark at both ends and write the date by each mark or line up a tape measure next to the crack and snap a photo. In addition, measure the width at the widest point and write that on the wall or make a note on the photo. Doing this can help you see the spread and how long it takes, and it can also be helpful to know when to call a professional. 

Important Things to Know

  • Foundation cracks range in size. Some are as small as the width of a sewing thread, and some can be bigger than a half-inch wide. 
  • If a big crack accompanies a bulge in a foundation wall, it indicates a structural problem.
  • Foundation cracks that change direction may showcase structural damage. 
  • Horizontal cracks are more likely to specify structural damage than vertical or diagonal cracks. 

How Are Foundation Cracks Fixed?

There are many types of repair materials and methods for foundation crack repairs. Each repair material has the same goal- fill in the crack and stop it from spreading further. Some materials work better than others for this. The size of the crack also plays a large role in repair materials and methods. 

Crack in concrete being filled with a paste. Ohio Homeworx logo bottom right.

It's common to fill hairline cracks with materials like masonry paint or grout. Concrete crack filler can fill cracks wider than one-eighth to one-fourth of an inch. Another common crack repair material is caulk suitable for concrete. Every one of these methods involves putting the material into the crack to fill it. A super common repair method is epoxy or polyurethane injections. These are both done through pressurized injection. 

There are tons of articles online with instructions on how to repair the cracks yourself. While this can work on small cracks, remember it's only temporary. Plus, you're still spending money on materials. You also can't ensure you're fixing the crack the right way or how effective you're being. The longevity of DIY repairs is unknown. You're not a professional, and the internet always makes things look easier than they are. The last thing you want is to spend money and time doing it yourself, only to mess up and need a professional anyway!

The Best Repair Method

Despite the materials and methods mentioned above, there's an even better option. Carbon fiber solutions are great for foundation crack repairs. Carbon fiber offers many different advantages due to its unique composition. The attributes of carbon fiber allow it to repair foundational cracks of any type and or size. Here's what you need to know.

Where is Carbon Fiber Used?

Foundation repair professionals use carbon fiber to repair bowed foundation walls. The carbon fiber links the foundation base with the house framing. The bi-directional carbon fiber support system repairs foundation walls. This isn't all, though. Carbon fiber can also repair other types of damage to your foundation. It's a great solution for foundation cracks. Carbon fiber is unique because it can work on any crack. This repair system works on large and small cracks, stair-stepping cracks in concrete block walls, leaking cracks, and hairline cracks that crack injection alone won't fix. With a carbon fiber solution, we repair cracks and stops them from moving. It also prevents water from entering your basement if you have one.

Why is Carbon Fiber Superior?

Carbon fiber being applied to a basement with a crack. Ohio Homeworx logo bottom left.

Carbon fiber is a super strong material. It cannot break, and it will not corrode. There's no need for maintenance. The fibers don't stretch, so when it's applied right, the repairs are permanent solutions. Carbon fiber repairs are also cost-effective and offer easy installation processes. The material is waterproof and indestructible. This means it prevents both water leaks and further cracking. It actually even increases the structural integrity of already cracked concrete. These repairs can also have paint or finishing put over top of them. This means you can fix the visual appeal alongside the actual repair. The bottom line is that a good carbon fiber solution will repair any type of foundation crack. It doesn't matter how minor or serious it is; carbon fiber can tackle it all.

Your Choice for Carbon Fiber Foundation Repairs

At Ohio Homeworx, we use Rhino Carbon Fiber®. They offer some of the strongest systems on the market. Rhino makes, tests, and quality control each product to meet and exceed requirements. They also back their product with a 25 Year limited warranty. This is why we use their products for our carbon fiber repairs. We're here to offer you peace of mind through good installation, service, and materials.

There are so many repair methods and materials, but choosing the right one is important. Choosing one that will work best and last the longest is important. If you have a foundation crack, think about it. Even if the crack is small, overlooking it or fixing it on your own can lead to further issues with time. Foundation cracks won't disappear on their own, and they will get worse if they're not repaired the right way. The sooner you choose to repair, the more money you save in the long run. 

Contact us today to get a quote!

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