Do you have cracks in your basement, in your drywall, or outside your walls? Are your doors or windows sticking? Then it may be that your foundation needs repair. Now, don’t panic. A cracked foundation may sound devastating, but many times it can be fixed. Just take a deep breath, relax, and do your research to find out what you can do to ensure your home’s foundation is safe and sound.

A great place to start when learning about foundation repair is to learn the signs that indicate there is a problem. Cracks in the basement, or diagonal cracks at the corners of doors and windows can be telltale signs. Other signs can include cracks in the visible part of foundation or cracks in the outside brick and mortar. Doors and windows that won’t open or close properly are also signs.

A main reason for foundation problems is shifting soil. This can particularly be a problem if your home is built on heavy clay. This clay can expand when it’s wet– for example because of rain or a leaking pipe– and shrink when it’s dry– for example when there hasn’t been rain in a while or if a tree is drinking up all the water next to a foundation. The expansion and shrinking of the soil may cause the foundation to shift. Repair methods may include filling in cracks or putting in supports, but it may also important to fix any leaks and repair any inadequate drainage systems if that is contributing to the problem.

If you think you have a foundation issue, call out a professional for help. He can identify and advise on the proper method of repairing the problem. Just be certain you are a well informed consumer. Don’t get suckered into an unnecessary or inadequate repair. Choose an honest and reputable contractor to get the job done right.