If you’re looking for a contractor who can repair your tilting or bowing foundation walls, we at Foundation Systems of Michigan are here to help. Our in-house, certified foundation experts have warrantied solutions for making all kinds of foundation repairs, including straightening foundation walls.
We provide free, no-obligation foundation wall straightening quotes throughout our Michigan service area, including Grand Rapids, Muskegon, Kalamazoo, Lansing, Battle Creek, Ann Arbor, Warren, Traverse City, Saginaw, Toledo the surrounding areas of Flint, Petoskey, Bloomfield Hills, Grosse Pointe, Troy, Jackson, Sterling Heights, and nearby. Call or e-mail us today to schedule your appointment!
What Causes Tilting Foundation Walls?
The soil around your foundation house can place a great deal of pressure on your basement walls.
This pressure varies based on the types of soil that are present, how much moisture is in the soil, and how far underground your foundation extends.
Other factors, such as hydrostatic pressure, expansive clay soils, frost, improper gutter systems, and poorly graded soils can also contribute to foundation issues.
While there’s constant pressure pushing in on the foundation, there’s no equalizing pressure pushing out. If the outside pressure is greater than the strength of your walls, they will begin to fail.
Cracks in the masonry are usually the first sign of wall failure. Then sections of the wall can actually start to buckle, bow, and tilt inwards. Left unchecked, this damage will worsen and can even result in walls that totally collapse.
The good news is that the foundation damage mentioned above can be repaired using proven, long-lasting techniques that are much more affordable than the total replacement of the foundation.
We often use a wall anchor system to stabilize bowing buckling walls. Once a series of these wall anchors has been installed, the system can be gradually tightened to return damaged walls to their original straight, plumb orientation a little bit at a time.
In some cases, homeowners may want bowing and/or tilting walls to be straightened right away as opposed to gradually, so that all or part of the basement can be finished — or perhaps they may want to completely correct foundation wall problems so that the house can be put on the market.
Regardless of the reason, basement walls can be excavated and straightened immediately rather than waiting to tighten the walls periodically.
Repairing & Straightening Tilting Foundation Walls
At Foundation Systems of Michigan, we recommend correcting damage done to failing foundation walls with the TerraForce® Foundation Wall Anchor System.
Our TerraForce® Wall Anchor System offers a permanent solution to stabilize basement walls and in some cases, bring the back to their original position.
1. Excavating the Foundation Perimeter
To relieve pressure placed on your foundation walls from outside moisture and soils, we at Foundation Systems of Michigan begin the wall straightening process by excavating the soils out from around the foundation.
Exterior excavation is only necessary when the foundation walls need to be straightened right away, such as when the walls are dangerously damaged, or you have scheduled the basement to be finished. In normal scenarios, this step is not a necessary part of all TerraForce® Wall Anchor System installations.
2. Position The Earth Anchor
Outside of the foundation, a section of the sod is carefully and temporarily removed at each earth anchor location. Workers dig a hole where each anchor will go.
This earth anchor is made with high-quality galvanized steel to resist corrosion and includes a 25-year warranty against manufacturing defects, as well as our own in-house quality and performance warranty.
Each earth anchor has a center hole for attaching the anchor rod that will be installed in the next step.
3. Prepare The Foundation Wall
Next, we drill a small hole in your foundation wall for the steel anchor rod that will extend from the wall to each earth anchor. We drive the anchor rod through the soil until it can be attached to its earth anchor.
One way our wall anchor system is superior to other methods is that the hole created in the foundation wall is very small – just 1′ in diameter. Other methods may require a large hole or section of concrete block to be removed during installation.
4. Mounting Wall Plates
Once the earth anchor has been attached to the anchor rod, a steel wall plate will be mounted to the anchor rod on the inside of the foundation.
Once this step of the installation has been completed for each earth anchor, the inward movement of your foundation walls will have been permanently halted. These wall anchors can now be tightened to continue to straighten and support the foundation wall.
5. Straightening Basement Walls
At this point, your foundation repair experts will stabilize your foundation walls. Wall anchors will be tightened and adjusted accordingly to provide long-term support for the walls.Once the wall is stabilized, the excavation is filled using the soil removed in Step 1.
However, to avoid excessive soil pressure in the future, gravel and drainage tile may be installed to help avoid soil pressure due to excessive moisture. After backfilling, landscape details will be carefully restored.
6. Cleaning Up & Preparing For Basement Finishing
All holes created for the soil anchor installation will be carefully filled in with excavated soil and mechanically compressed. Your sod will carefully be replaced and raked for a seamless blend with surrounding landscaping.