Do you have a concrete foundation? Is it chipping? The chipping of concrete walls is referred to in the foundation repair industry as scaling or spalling.
When concrete walls set, small cracks form. Water enters these cracks from the surrounding soil when it rains. When the winter sets in, the water in the cracks freezes and becomes ice. Water expands when it freezes. This means that the ice trapped within the cracks will expand and result in chipping of the wall.
This often occurs when the concrete used to build the foundation was mixed poorly or did not cure properly.
When You Need Foundation Repair
Many homeowners think of chipping or spalling as a cosmetic problem. However, it is much more than that. In fact, it can be an indication of a serious problem that needs professional attention. Consider the following factors:
- The type of foundation
It is important to consider the type of foundation you have. Chipping can occur in concrete block foundations as well as poured concrete foundations. Chipping in concrete blocks can result in areas of weakness. If you have a concrete block foundation that is chipping, be sure to contact a professional repair expert as soon as possible.
- How long the problem has presented itself
It is also important to consider how long the chipping has been happening. If the chipping is an ongoing problem, ask a professional to examine the foundation to ensure that it doesn’t spread to other parts of the wall.
- Cracking around the chipping or spalling
The chipped areas should be examined. If there are cracks around the spalling or chipping, you may be dealing with a structural problem. You will need the assistance of an expert to deal with the problem.
- The location of the chipping
Where is the spalling occurring? Does the chipping occur near the floor or in the middle of the wall? Is a gutter located on the outside surface of the wall where the chipping is occurring? If there is a gutter nearby, then you could be dealing with poor drainage. You should check the gutters and have them cleaned or redirected.
- The extent of damage
Are you dealing with shallow or deep chipping? If you’re dealing with chipping that covers a large patch of the wall or is deeper than half an inch, then you have a serious problem.
Be sure to talk to a foundation expert and have your foundation inspected when you notice chipping. This will ensure that you deal with the underlying cause of the problem.