All houses settle over time and that includes those in the New Orleans and Mandeville areas. Some unevenness or signs of “give” are to be expected. But how do you know the big warning signs that require attention? Let’s say you have a door that starts jamming. It may be the wet season, so you decide to wait it out. Summer comes and that door still keeps on jamming, only even more. Or, let’s say you see a small crack in the drywall around a doorway, where the wall and ceiling meet or by a window. That can be a sign for concern. If you notice a small crack be sure to take a picture of it. Wait a month or so and take another picture. Do you see any changes? Is it longer? Wider? All these may be telltale signs of a foundation repair looming in your near future.
So what should you do if you suspect a New Orleans foundation repair or Mandeville foundation repair is needed? First, do a visual inspection of the foundation from outside. Step away from your house to look at the condition. Walk far enough away to get a clear eye line and see if the foundation looks level. Close one eye and try to follow the line of your house from one end to the other. It should look horizontally sound. If you see any crookedness in your eye line, there may be an issue. Although a visual inspection can give you a hint of a problem, the real tests will prove whether or not you need foundation repair help.
For a better judgment with the level test, try using a level. This is a tool that indicates a perfectly horizontal plane. There is a bubble of air housed in a case of liquid. There are also little tick marks to signify the exact center of the little compartment. When the bubble is perfectly centered between those tick marks, it means the level is perfectly horizontal. You can get fancy with a level and purchase one that has vertical plumb lines too, but a good cheap one should give you the indicators you need just fine. Hold the level horizontal on a few different locations of the foundation. Every time the bubble should reach center signifying your house is even. If the bubble shifts off to one end or the other, that may be the time to call a repair man for an official assessment.
You can also use your level around your house. See if there are any areas that are shifted. This is the kind of thing that is going to give away any compromises in the foundation. Remember that shifts are small at first. You won’t see a huge problem. But catching problems with foundation repair in Baton Rouge or Mandeville early is key to saving costs.
If your house has concrete poured around its perimeter, do some inspecting. See if there are any chips. A chip can be a sign that the concrete is experiencing heavy pressure and buckling. Foundation repair may be needed to shore up those compromised areas. Of course there are other reasons why your concrete may be chipped or cracked. It may have been mixed improperly or that area may take more wear and tear. Here is where a professional can come in and give you a more detailed assessment of the chipping.
You also should go to the basement or crawl space. Do another visual assessment of posts or concrete supports. You want both to be standing perfectly straight. Again, here is where a level can help. Use it up against the bottom of your posts and supports to make sure they are perfectly horizontal. Also, do an inspection of the post’s foundations. You want to make sure the entire bottom is securely resting on the ground and the entire top is supporting the entire ceiling. Any compromise here can show a problem with a shifting foundation in need of repair.
The bottom line with New Orleans and Mandeville foundation repair is that it is important. Your entire house rests on that slab. This is why foundation repair and knowing how to check for issues is critical knowledge for any homeowner.