Cracks in your foundation not only make your home unsightly — they also threaten its stability. Rather than the result of disasters like earthquakes or tornadoes, most foundation cracks develop from gradually worsening circumstances. This makes them none the less a threat to your home, one that will eventually require service and repair. To understand how they occur, and to hopefully prevent them from appearing, you should familiarize yourself with some common causes of foundation cracks.
Too Much Moisture
Too much moisture in the ground near your home can cause foundation cracks. An excess of moisture will cause soil to swell, which will then force cracks as your foundation adjusts. The cause of this could come from a leaking pipe, or from inefficient drainage off your roof.
Too Little Moisture
Too little moisture also causes problems with a foundation. In the scenario of a prolonged drought, soil will contract, which causes your foundation to settle and crack. Another detrimental situation can happen with your home’s construction. If builders construct a foundation throughout a period of consistent rainfall, the foundation will resettle once the ground dries.
Ideally, the soil around a house receives proper compaction as the house gets built. This practice ensures an even base for the foundation, and allows it to settle properly. If the builders did not compact the soil, the foundation will settle unevenly and crack.