Roohome.com – Even if you invest in the highest-quality materials at the time of construction, you will typically face pier and beam repair for a Corpus Christi home at some point. A pier and beam foundation holds up the entire weight of your home and, like any other part of its structure, will corrode and degrade as it ages, so it’s not unusual for those piers and beams to eventually shift, settle, crack, or otherwise need repairs.
However, the way you maintain your home’s foundation over the years will affect its longevity. To help you avoid otherwise unnecessary pier and beam foundation repair in Corpus Christi, check out a few simple suggestions for keeping your home’s foundation in good condition.
1. Inadequate Drainage Leads to Pier and Beam Repair in Corpus Christi!
Inadequate drainage is probably the leading cause of otherwise unnecessary pier and beam repair for Corpus Christi homes. Allowing water to pool in the home’s crawl space will lead to softening of wood, or rust and corrosion along metal piers. Once those piers soften or corrode, they won’t hold up the home’s weight as they should, which can then lead to even more pronounced cracks and a house settling and sinking.
If you’re not sure that your property’s drainage is adequate, have the soil inspected by a landscaping engineer or schedule a foundation inspection. These contractors can note if your property’s soil seems overly moist or if the foundation is showing signs of water damage, indicating that your property needs added drainage.
If your property does need better drainage or moisture control, note that this doesn’t need to be expensive! A French drain is a series of PVC pipes buried just a few inches underground, which collects moisture and directs it to a drain or even a landscaping feature. Planting some shrubs in front of the home can also pull moisture away from the foundation, protecting it from damage.
2. Encapsulate the Crawlspace to Protect a Pier and Beam Foundation
Crawlspace encapsulation is an excellent investment for protecting your pier and beam foundation. Proper drainage will help avoid excess moisture in the ground, but encapsulation will reduce humidity trapped in the home’s crawlspace, blocking vapors and dew along the soil.
Encapsulation also ensures a clean, dry space underneath your home, for easier access to the foundation, pipes, wiring, and other fixtures and features. With less trapped moisture in the space and less access to open soil, you’ll also reduce the risk of damaging insect and rodent infestation when you invest in encapsulation services! Your crawlspace encapsulation costs are then offset by the pier and beam foundation repair costs you’ll avoid over the years.
3. Maintain the Gutters and Downspouts to Avoid Foundation Damage
While proper drainage helps avoid water pooling around the foundation, it won’t help if your home’s gutters and downspouts are undersized, clogged, or damaged. Clogged gutters allow rainwater to wash over their sides so that it then tends to collect around the foundation, risking damage to piers and beams.
Undersized gutters might also fill too quickly so that rain washes over their sides, while undersized downspouts might not direct water far enough away from the home. Damaged gutters and downspouts might also allow water to spill over their sides or through dents and dings, which can also lead to excess moisture around the home’s pier and beam foundation.
To avoid these risks, ensure the home’s gutters are always clean and clog-free. Have a roofer check their size and condition as needed, and invest in downspout extenders, to ensure water empties far from the home’s foundation.
4. Invest in Regular Foundation Inspections and Needed Maintenance
Regular foundation inspections are an excellent investment and help ensure the pier and beam foundation is always in good condition. Your foundation repair contractor can note if there is developing damage and if your pier and beam foundation needs shimming for added stability, waterproofing, or other such minor repairs and maintenance.
Scheduling timely repairs as cracks or corrosion form and investing in shimming and other such maintenance keeps the piers and beams of your home’s foundation strong. This will prolong its lifespan and help avoid otherwise unnecessary repairs.
5. Don’t Add Weight to the Home
Never forget that a home’s foundation is designed to hold only so much weight! While foundations can typically manage a few extra hundred pounds of weight, installing heavy stone floors, a second or third story, a sunroom, or other such feature to the house without bracing the foundation can lead to premature damage.
If you do have a renovation project planned that will add significant weight to the home, ensure it’s first inspected by a foundation repair contractor. He or she might suggest added piers and beam or shimming, for extra support. This will ensure you avoid otherwise unnecessary pier and beam foundation repair for a Corpus Christi home, and that your property is always stable and in good condition structurally.