There is an old saying that talks about the importance of a good foundation. Whether you’re talking about it in a construction sense or using it as a metaphor for other life events, it’s the truth. However, when constructing a foundation for a home or building, there are big mistakes that can cause immeasurable and expensive damage. At Magnum Piering, our goal is to be the largest and most trusted foundation construction products company in the USA. In pursuit of this goal, we have put together this list of the most costly mistakes you can make when constructing a foundation. Steer clear of these to ensure you’re providing your clients the best quality construction possible.
Potentially the most important thing you can do for a foundation, waterproofing is something that can’t be ignored. While cement and concrete (which most foundations are made of) are both quite durable, they also have the downside of being porous. What this means is that if not handled properly, water can penetrate the foundation in those small nooks and crannies. You might not think this sounds like a big deal, but the truth is, water is like kryptonite to foundations. When water is able to enter the foundation, a drop in temperature can cause it to freeze, leading to an expanding and contracting effect which will damage the integrity of the foundation. Even in areas that don’t have freezing temperatures on a regular basis, water will still cause the foundation to become weaker and break down over time. There’s no doubt about it, not waterproofing a foundation is setting it up to fail.
-Not Sealing Leaks
If the natural porous nature of concrete and cement can result in so much damage, just imagine what can happen when leaks and cracks aren’t treated. Leaks and cracks will give way to water, which can create even deeper damage to a foundation’s integrity. In addition to that, they provide a perfect place for harmful mold, mildew, and fungus to begin to grow. When they are allowed to grow unchecked, it can lead to extensive respiratory issues for the residents of the home or building. Because the act of sealing these leaks can end up sealing moisture into the foundation (allowing it to continue to cause damage) it makes it vital to do this as soon as you catch them in the construction process. Additionally, you should inform your client that they should be on the watch for cracks or leaks to avoid future troubles.
When you’re working a job, it can be easy to get stuck in that mindset where you just want to get started as soon as you can so you can be done faster. However, as you might have noticed from the earlier entries, you shouldn’t ignore the weather when pouring the foundation. Doing it in the rain or snow will give moisture free reign over the foundation’s integrity. A foundation needs time in order to dry properly. When it isn’t able to dry, it will cause it to settle irregularly, causing it to crack, sag, and lose its ability to support weight. It isn’t just on days when it’s raining or snowing when you need to be aware of this. Even an exceptionally humid day can cause drying times to be extended due to the moisture-filled air.
A house or building is only as good as its foundation. Keep these tips in mind to ensure you’re producing the highest quality foundation possible. Beyond keeping foundations dry, you need to make sure you have equipment you can depend on. If you’re looking for a supplier of helical piles, foundation brackets, solar piles, or piers, look no further than Magnum Piering. Call us today to learn more about our foundation piling and earth anchoring products.