Foundations & Wall Cracking – Structural Engineering Advice

Foundations – they are one of the most significant elements of a building. This being said, it is paramount that they are constructed perfectly to stand the test of time but sometimes there is more to it, such as ground conditions. Sinkholes and other geological hazards raise the likelihood of issues that arise which can damage foundations so it is critical that an inspection is arranged as soon as you notice significant wall cracks. The assessment of foundations should be carried out by a professional structural engineer so the optimal solution can be advised.

Cracks in walls, floors that are not level or sagging and tight door swings are common factors of poorly constructed building foundations. The early signs begin with a small crack that gets larger and larger as time passes. Although it may seem insignificant at the time, it is a good hint that irregular activity is occurring in the ground beneath your home. A lot of time and money will be saved by getting help sooner rather than later and booking in a building inspection with a professional structural engineer.

After the inspection it may be required that a geotechnical investigation is done to test the foundations and gather information about the soil which your building sits on. To obtain this information “borehole drilling” is done, where a small hole is drilled and a sample is obtained to  indicate the soil type. This information could be all that is required for a structural engineer to design a solution and prevent any more wall cracking.

If this is not the issue a non-destructive test may be carried out which analyses the structures beneath (footings) and their capacity, whether or not they are sufficient. If this is the case a foundation repair plan will be produced.