Tag Archives: foundation repair

Sticking Doors Outside of Summer?

sticking doorsEach summer, you might notice that your doors and windows start to stick a little bit when you open or close then. Sticking doors can be caused by humidity, or they may mean that your door is hung wrong. However, if you notice that your doors have started to stick all year round you might be encountering a different problem. Before sanding off pieces of the door, let’s learn a little bit about what might be happening.

Sticking Doors Are a Sign of Foundation Damage

If you notice that your door not only sticks when it’s humid out but all of the time–it’s time to call a contractor for a free estimate! Foundation damage may be the cause of your sticking doors. How? Well, sometimes settlement occurs or hydrostatic pressure pushes against the walls. While natural settlement happens to almost all homes and is nothing to worry about, some types of settlement can cause big damage to your foundation. If you notice cracked walls, sloping floors, or other problems this may be the culprit. Hydrostatic pressure from water-saturated soil pushing against the foundation might also be a problem for your foundation. Over time, this pressure can cause cracks in the foundation. These cracks can let in water, moisture and mold, and even critters. Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry would be happy to diagnose the problem and get you on your way to doors that don’t stick and a stable home in the process.

Options for Resolving the Foundation Issue

Instead of just sanding down the door or rehanging it, you need to get to the root of the issue. This will usually involve foundation repair. Depending on what the problem is, there are a few methods of foundation repair. Most of the time, we will use underpinning to correct the foundation failure and give your foundation new support and stabilization. A few underpinning options include push piers or helical piers. Both of these piers are driven deep into soil that is stable and then connected to the home via steel plate. Once transferred, the weight of the home rests on the piers and gradually returns to a stable and level position. These type of piers are installed on the exterior of the home. They are manufactured by Earth Contact Products, a leader in the industry, and they are made of All-American Made Steel so you can trust they’ll last for years and years to come.

When You Can D.I.Y. Fix the Issue

If you notice that your doors only stick when the humidity is high and not at any other time, you can probably rightfully assume that the wood in your door is expanding or it has fallen slightly off its hinges. In this case, you can attempt a D.I.Y. fix. However, if you want to be sure, why not call Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry for an estimate? We can make sure that you’re not missing a bigger issue with your foundation that could get worse if left alone.

Need Help with Sticking Doors?

Call Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry if you are needing a foundation repair contractor to assist with problems like the one described above. Schedule a free estimate today. Not only will we fix the issue, we’ll make sure it lasts for years to come so that you don’t have to worry about an unstable foundation. If you’re unsure about your sticking doors, give us a call today. Contact us for more information on our services and to schedule an estimate.

3 Tips to Get Ready for Spring 2019

Spring is almost here, and it’s time for a lot of changes in our environment. Whether it’s more rain, less cold, or more pollen, there are a few things that we can do to get our home and property ready for the spring weather. While many of us take up D.I.Y. projects once warmer weather hits, we might want to ignore bigger projects that our home really needs. However, these projects will save you money in the long run by completing them while the problem is not debilitating.

concrete repair vaFix Up Concrete Cracks

This spring, it’s time to fix up those sidewalk, deck, and driveway cracks you’ve been avoiding. Unfortunately, these “little cracks” can add up to big problems in the future. During the winter, water can get into the cracks and then freeze. This can cause even bigger issues. Additionally, when water gets underneath the slab, it can cause erosion which may lead to empty areas beneath your concrete slabs that are not supported. One great way to resolve this issue, and the issue of cracked or uneven concrete, is with concrete restoration. There’s no need to fully replace a concrete slab when you can simply resolve the issue. Contact Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry for more information on our solutions.

Check on Sump Pumps

If you have a sump pump in your basement or crawl space, you probably rely on it to protect you against any water that happens to make its way into your home. Unfortunately, when sump pumps are not maintained they aren’t going to protect you. This is why it’s so important for regular maintenance of your sump pump. If you’re not sure how to do this, it’s time to call in the professionals. If your sump pump has reached its max lifetime and isn’t doing the job like it used to, it might be time to repair or replace it. A sump pump is an invaluable part of any waterproofing system in homes with recurrent waterproofing problems. Put this on your spring honey-do list!

steel piers, VA foundation crackCheck Your Foundation for Cracks

Over the winter season, the variable weather and temperatures can wreak havoc on your foundation. This means that you could end up coming out the other side with cracks in your foundation. While these may not do much to begin with, over time they can let in water and pests, grow bigger and more dangerous to your foundation, and eventually turn into bowing walls. Bowing walls lead to a very unstable foundation, and they need to be fixed immediately and can cost big bucks. However, when you catch foundation cracks from the beginning, you’re going to save a lot of money. This is why it’s so important to do a regular check of your foundation, inside and out, to make sure that everything is up to par. If you’re not sure what you’re looking for, give us a call at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry and we’ll be happy to assist you.

Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry is Happy to Help This Spring

Whether you need foundation repair help, have waterproofing woes, or you’re interested in concrete restoration, Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry is happy to help. Contact us for more information and get a free estimate. Let’s make this spring 2019 a great one for your foundation.

Soil Can Damage My Home’s Foundation?

This weekend, it will be warming up, but it will also be starting to rain. All weekend we will have showers in Richmond. We’ve also had wet conditions before this, and it might be starting to take a toll on your home. Did you know that water can saturate soil and cause your foundation big problems? Find out how and how to resolve it in this article.

foundation floodingHydrostatic Pressure and Your Home

When the soil under and near a home is not compacted correctly, it can be loose and turn to mud easily. When enough water from rain, flooding, or otherwise gets into the soil, it becomes saturated. This now wet, heavy soil begins to push against the foundation and cause unexpected pressure in those areas. The foundation was not built to withstand this pressure because it’s not supposed to be there. So, eventually the foundation will begin to crack from all the pressure on it. This can lead to wet basements, insects and pests, and even eventually to bowing walls. So, what can you do to resolve the issue?

Why Isn’t Wall Crack Repair the Answer?

It seems like the obvious answer–patch the crack with wall crack repair! However, it’s not as easy as it seems. While the wall crack repair would hold up for a little while, it would only be masking the real issue. This is dangerous for you not only because it can lead to instability and an unsafe home, but it can also lead to a buildup of hidden mold that affects your air quality. This is even more dangerous if new people were to move into the home and not know about the “patch” job on the wall crack. They may assume everything is fine when they actually have an unstable home and a mold problem. The key to resolving a wall crack is to find the root of the problem. Make sure that the real problem is resolved before wall crack repair.

Steel Foundation PierSolutions for Foundation Damage

In most cases, this is a foundation issue. Foundation repair can easily be completed with underpinning products such as push piers, helical piers, or even carbon fiber strips.This will all depend on the severity of the problem and if the walls are already bowing from undue pressure. This is when it’s important to get the opinion of a professional contractor like those at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry. We will perform a free estimate, look for the root of the problem, and then make a recommendation on our advice for resolving the issue. Plus, we’re happy to answer any questions that you might have!

Contact Reliable Waterproofing and Masonry for Wall Crack Repair

While we won’t JUST repair the wall crack, we’ll make sure to get to the root of the issue so you never have this problem again. Contact us for more information about Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry and about wall crack repair.

Should You Buy a Home Needing Foundation Crack Repair?

When you’re on the journey of buying a new home, there are many things that you may be looking for. The size of the rooms, the yard, the fixtures and appliances in the kitchen, and the location may all be factors on the list of things you want. When you have your inspection, you may get some bad news–the home needs foundation crack repair. Now you have to make a decision: is it still worth it to buy a home that needs foundation crack repair? In this article, we will examine the pros and cons of buying a house that needs foundation crack repair.

Is the Problem Easy to Resolve?

foundation repairThis question should not be answered by you. You should hire a professional inspector who has experience diagnosing structural issues and can provide you with an estimate that will give you leveraging ability in negotiations with the current homeowner if you decide to try to buy the home. Make sure that you are told what the problem is, how it can be fixed, and how much that will cost you.

Do not try to diagnose the problem yourself or think that you can resolve it with a crack repair kit. In most cases, foundation crack repair is not a DIY job because the crack is a symptom of the problem which usually leads to foundation repair. Following this, the cracks are a cosmetic problem that will be resolved. However, when you don’t get to the root of the problem, the problem will continue. There are only a few cases where a foundation is nothing to worry about, and your inspector will tell you when this happens.

Consider the Financial Problems

foundation crack repairOne thing that you should consider when deciding if it’s worth it to buy a home with foundation crack repair is that some banks will not give you a loan for a home with documented foundation repair issues. This is almost always what happens with government based loan systems. The lender wants to protect themselves in this situation. When you buy a home with foundation damage, it’s expected that you will also be fixing that damage. That can cost a lot of money! The lender just wants to protect themselves and make sure that they will get their money back.

If you do end up deciding to buy a home needing foundation crack repair, make sure that you check with your bank to make sure that you will be allowed to get a loan. Additionally, make sure that there are no penalties that come with this. You could have a higher interest rate or down payment when you buy a home with structural damage.

Will Foundation Crack Repair Disrupt Your Life?

Think about it. You’re buying a new home for you, and possibly your family as well, and you are already going to be stressed. Is it worth to you to have the added stress of a foundation repair on top of this. Not knowing if your home is going to cost you a lot of money, not be stable, or let in water the first time it rains can be a big stressor. Are you ready to take this on at the same time that you are moving to a new place, getting adjusted, and having to figure all of that out? If so, and you’ve considered all of the other factors, you can reasonably buy the home. If not, this may well be the deciding factor for you.

If you need a home inspection before you buy, call Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry. We’re happy to work with you to get your new home ready for you to live safely and comfortably in. If you have more questions about foundation repair methods or our process, give us a call!

Sticking Door Repair: Is It Really the Door?

When you leave for work in the morning, do you notice that the doors and windows are sticking and will not open right? You might wonder what’s wrong. Is it the wood expanding? It might be. However, it might be a foundation problem that is causing the door or window to be pushed up higher than it should be, which makes it “stick” when you go to open or close it. It might be time to consider sticking door repair or sticking window repair.

sticking window repairWhat are symptoms of a sticking window or sticking door?

The main symptoms you will see with this problem are that the door or window appears to be difficult to open or close. You may also notice that the door does not fit within the frame perfectly, or hits on the top. The frame may also be raised below it or pulling away from the sub-floor. With windows, this issue may present as the the window not being able to shut all the way or not fitting correctly in its frame. it’s also prudent to look for cracks around the wall by the door or window. You can also take a look at your foundation in the area below the problem window or door. However, if you don’t feel comfortable doing so–always feel free to give us a call and we can come inspect your property for you.

What causes sticking doors and windows in spring?

Over the winter months, the ground will freeze and thaw continually. It’s a natural process, but it can wreak some havoc on your foundation if it’s not prepared. Water will gather in the soil beside the foundation and freeze. It will then push against the foundation in unusual ways which cause cracks and buckling. It can also go beneath the foundation and raise and lower it, with the freezing and thawing. This is called frost heave, and it can cause your windows and doors to stick.

sticking window repairWhat to do for sticking door repair? Sticking window repair?

The issue may not necessarily be the sticking door or window. Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry will first check your foundation to see if there are any underlying problems. If there aren’t, we can move on to correcting what may be an issue with the sub-floor or the door itself.

If there is a foundation issue, there are several options depending on what the issue is. If there are cracks in the wall, a bowing wall, or other issues, there will be different solutions to each. Most of these will involve foundation underpinning or carbon fiber strips to support the wall. The best news is that a problem which could’ve caused safety and stability concerned was addressed and your home will be safe once more.

Give Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry a call today to find out what options you have for sticking door repair or sticking window repair. We are happy to provide a free estimate and get your home back to being safe and comfortable again.

Best Time to Do Waterproofing in VA

Best Time for Basement Waterproofing and Foundation Repair

Best Time to Do Waterproofing, Waterproofing in VA, Basement Waterproofing in VA, Foundation Repair in RichmondNow that Spring is almost here with rain and thawing snow, many homeowners in Richmond and other parts of Virginia are thinking about whether their basements will remain dry. They may ask the following questions: When is the best time to waterproof a basement? Does it make a difference what the weather is? This article will answer some of those questions about the best time to do waterproofing and foundation repair.

Does weather affect the best time to do waterproofing?

Weather is an important consideration when it comes to basement waterproofing and foundation repairs. Some activities, like repairing basement cracks, can be done anytime of the year but are best done when it’s not raining. Others, like excavating foundation walls, should not be done during cold winter months.

How does rain affect waterproofing activities?

Crack Repair

It depends on what materials you are using whether or not you can repair a crack that is actively leaking. If you plan to inject high pressure polyurethane into a crack, it doesn’t make a difference because the polyurethane is waterproof and dries quickly. On the other hand, if you plan to use epoxy in the crack, it may leak all the way through the crack and allow water to reenter.

Foundation Excavation

It is never a good idea to excavate a foundation while the soil is wet or it is raining for the following reasons:

  • It is extremely messy!
  • Working with wet clay is like working with quick sand and is very inefficient. For the same reason, it represents a higher risk for workers.
  • Working with wet sandy soil makes it more likely to cause later cave-ins.
  • Both water and solvent based foundation coatings simply don’t adhere to wet foundation walls.

How does cold weather affect waterproofing activities?

Crack Repair

If you are working indoors, cold weather has little effect on crack repair. It all depends on the type of material you are using.

  • Polyurethane – Winter is the best time to do polyurethane injection work, especially in parking garages and structures that get extremely cold. Concrete shrinks during the winter, therefore opening gaps to their maximum width, so the polyurethane will be flexible enough to fill the gap year-round. Fluid polyurethane resin is thicker when cold and takes longer to cure during winter weather.
  • Epoxy – Epoxy crack injection is also feasible during winter months. Cold weather thickens the epoxy resin also. At 77 resin also. At 77°, epoxy resin cures in 3-5 hours; during the winter months, it takes longer.

Foundation Excavation and Waterproofing

Winter is not the best time to perform foundation excavation and exterior waterproofing for the following reasons:

  • While it is possible to coat a foundation with a solvent-based product, water-based coatings should never be used in cold weather.
  • Because solvent based coatings may require 48 hours to cure, it would cause your foundation to be exposed to freezing temperatures and frost for a period of several days which may result in foundation heaving and damage.
  • Solvent based foundation coatings have a terrible odor, and with your windows closed, the smell will penetrate your home for at least a week.
  • Freeze and thaw cycles increase the likelihood of soil cave-ins which are very dangerous and would require more time to pile and replace the soil into the foundation.

At Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry, we work year-round and can take care of all of your foundation crack repair and excavation repair needs.  We specialize in masonry repair.  Contact us today!

Preventing Frozen Pipes in VA

Problems with Frozen Pipes during VA Winters

water shut-off valve, frozen pipes, water leaks Richmond

Did you have a problem with frozen pipes or broken pipes last winter? Each winter, thousands of homeowners in Virginia lose water service due to frozen and broken pipes and water meters. Now that the air is warmer and ground is thawing, it’s not too soon to start thinking think about how to prevent problems next year.

Repairing and replacing frozen pipes and water-damaged walls, floors, and items on floors can be expensive and time-consuming. The homeowner has a further expense by being responsible for paying for water that leaks from a broken pipe. It can cost more than $100 to replace a broken water meter. The following article explains ways of preventing frozen pipes in VA and what to do when a pipe does become frozen.

What can I do now to prevent pipes and meters from freezing?

There are several things you should do before the weather gets below freezing again:

  • Find the location of your main water shut-off valve. If a pipe freezes or breaks, you’ll know where to shut it off immediately.
  • Identify which areas of your home are most vulnerable to frozen pipes, including basements, crawl spaces, unheated rooms and outside walls.
  • Insulate your pipes and water meter. By wrapping exposed pipes with insulation or electrical heating wires, you will protect your pipes from freezing. If you do it yourself, make sure that you follow the manufacturer’s instructions to avoid a fire hazard.
  • Eliminate sources of cold air sources near water pipes by repairing broken windows, insulating walls, sealing crawl spaces and preventing drafts near doors.  Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry offers services in both crawl space sealing and foundation repair to avoid problems with freezing.
  • Disconnect hoses from outside faucets and, if possible, shut off outside water valves.
  • For outside meters, make sure the lid to the meter is closed tightly. If snow falls on top of it, don’t worry because snow acts as a good insulator.

What should I do when it gets below freezing?

When the outside temperature is consistently below freezing, there are a few precautions that you can take to prevent water pipes from breaking.

  • At night, when it is coldest, turn on a small trickle of water from both your cold and hot water faucets. The cost of the extra water is minimal compared to the cost of repairing a broken pipe. If you don’t want to waste water, collect it in a bowl for feeding pets or watering plants.
  • Leave open cabinet doors, even just a crack, to expose pipes to the warmer air in the room.

What if I’m going to be gone for more than a few days?

If you plan to leave your home for more than a few days, it is wise to take a few extra precautions.

  • Don’t turn your thermostat down below 50 degrees. It is important to keep a minimal level of heat inside the house.
  • Ask a neighbor, friend, or relative to check your home occasionally to make sure the heat is working and pipes aren’t frozen.
  • Consider purchasing a freeze alarm, which costs less than $100. It will call any specified number if the indoor temperature drops below 45 degrees.

What should I do if my pipes do freeze?

If you do have the misfortune of a frozen pipe, there are certain steps you should take first.

  • Turn your water off immediately at the shut-off valve. Freezing may have caused the pipes to crack, and thawing them without turning off the water may cause them to leak through undetected cracks.
  • Apply heat to the frozen pipe by either warming the air around it by raising the room temperature or using a space heater. You can also apply heat directly to the pipe with a hair dryer or hot water. For safety purposes, keep an eye on space heaters and avoid the use of kerosene heaters or open flames.
  • When the pipes are thawed, turn on the water gradually and check for any cracks or leaks.
  • If you do have a cracked or broken pipe, your only choice is to a plumber to repair it before you turn the water back on.

These simple measures can assure that you won’t have a problem with frozen pipes or water meters next year. Contact us if you have further questions about how to insulate your crawl space and repair problems with your masonry or foundation wall to avoid frozen pipes.

Virginia saw Flooding in Sept. from Hurricane Hermine

Recovering from Virginia Foundation Floodingfoundation flooding

In September Hurricane Hermine ripped its way through the Carolinas and into Virginia. Along with downed trees and power outages, there was intense coastal flooding. For many home and business owners, this hurricane was devastating. Foundation flooding not only causes awful water damage, but it can ruin your possessions as well. So, what is the best way to recover from a flood?

Contact us here at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry! We offer a variety of waterproofing and foundation repair services to help fix your flooding issues and prevent them in the future as well. From interior and exterior drainage installation to helical and steel push piers, we have everything you might need. We want to help you make sure your Virginia home or business is safe from water damage and foundation failure. Give us a call today to learn more!

Solutions for Flooding in Virginia

We here at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry offer a variety of solutions for flooding and other water related problems, including sump pumps, battery backup sump pumps, and interior or exterior drainage installation. These can both help remedy the immediate problem–like a flooded basement–and prevent these problems in the future. Invest in your home’s future and get waterproofing before you need it. Contact us today to learn more about our waterproofing options as well as foundation repair, masonry work, and crawl space repair. We are here to help!

What Effect Does Colder Weather Have on Your Virginia Foundation?

Winter & Colder Weather Foundation Problems

winter foundation cracking virginia

What many Virginia homeowners may not realize is that winter and its colder weather can actually have harmful effects on your home’s foundation. When the weather reaches freezing temperatures, winter foundation problems and damage become more likely. When the temperature is under 40 degrees for three consecutive days or more, the likeliness rises even more. Knowing the signs of foundation damage can help you stay ahead. The most common types of foundation damage include cracking foundation, leaking water, and uneven flooring.

Cold temperatures cause moisture in the soil to freeze, causing frost heave. This creates cracking in concrete and masonry. If these issues are not kept track of, it can lead to further problems throughout your Virginia home, including sticking doors and windows, cracking walls and ceilings, leaning and bowing walls, and much more. If you notice cracking in your basement, around your foundation, or in your home, make sure to contact us here at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry. We can help your determine the extent of the damage and begin the process of repairing it.

Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry Serves Virginia All Year Round

Winter is not the only time that foundation failure can happen, so knowing the variety of problems that can affect your Virginia home can help you identify these issues early. If you do happen to notice damage around your home, make sure to contact a foundation repair professional as soon as possible. Waiting and letting these problems continue will lead to further damage. This can lead to more expensive, time consuming, and complex repairs. Call Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry today with your winter foundation problems and concerns! Here are just a few of the common foundation problems that may affect your home:

We here at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry are proud to say that we have a large service area. Our service area covers almost all of Virginia including Richmond, Petersburg, Hopewell, Colonial Heights, Charles City, and more. Contact us today for more information on our services which include foundation repair, waterproofing, concrete repair, masonry repair, and crawl space repair.

 

 

Block Foundation Problems & Repair in Virginia

What is Wrong With Your Foundation and How To Repair It

Out of all of the structural and hydraulic issues that can occur in a home, a majority of them can be attributed to foundation problems.

A major issue that we commonly see is leaning or bowing walls. When a foundation wall is sloped, it can be an incredible cause for concern among Virginia homeowners. Their appearance can lead you to think that they will need to be completely replaced, but the repair of bowing block walls is possible and will leave you with a stronger wall than you had before.

Leaning walls in older homes can be quite common because walls that were built in the 20th
century were not designed to support the weight of the structure above them for long periods of time. Fortunately, this damage can be reversed with the right tools and equipment with our very skillful team of professionals here at Reliable Waterproofing & Masonry.

crack-695010_1280

There are various forces that can work together to cause a bowing block wall and other foundation problems. Water and soil pressure from below combined with the structure weight from above can put pressure on the wall that is more than it can bear. This causes it to bend, crack, and eventually fail. In the earlier stages, bowing walls can be hard to identify. The damage can sometimes hardly be noticed, but there are a few things you should look out for. When doors, cabinets, and windows aren’t shutting properly, it can be an indicator that your foundation walls are losing strength. Some other symptoms to look out for include misaligned doors and windows, separating molding or trim, leaky walls, and garage column cracks.

Other foundation problems that you may have see is wall, floor, and ceiling cracks. Although small and seemingly insignificant cracks may not look like a big deal, they usually mean that something is wrong with your foundation. Cracks that are bigger than even the width of a dime can indicate that your foundation is failing, or that your home is not sufficiently waterproofed.

A failing foundation can also cause sloped and uneven floors. Due to the intense changes of climate that Virginia can experience, the soil underneath your house often fluctuates and can cause the foundation to move as well. When the foundation moves, this can cause the floors that it holds to sink or rise.

Don’t Wait On Foundation Problems for Your Virginia Home

Foundation problems do not fix themselves, and deterioration can quickly come if early warnings are not heeded. It is important to strictly and regularly monitor any suspicious cracks, and get your foundation inspected by a professional as soon as you can.

The best thing to do to prevent further damage is to get your foundation problems repaired and your basement waterproofed as soon as possible. For foundation repair in Virginia, products such as steel piers, tieback anchors, and hydraulic lift slab piers can be used. For waterproofing, consider a sump pump or an interior or exterior drainage system. These products will help to get the water away from your foundation and prevent destruction, while maintaining its strength for years to come. Call Reliable for assistance with all your foundation repair needs in Virginia!