Here are a few do’s and don’ts of foundation repair to look out for….

Don’t make these common mistakes with your foundation:

  • Paint your basement walls. This can trap moisture in the walls and conceal any problems until it becomes more severe. Moisture trapped in walls can lead to rusting of the metal reinforcement within the walls as well the deterioration of the concrete itself.  This can result in concrete spalling or ultimately failure of the foundation wall.
  • Ignore the problem and let things go for too long. We often see small concerns that have grown into massive issues due to homeowners putting off repairs for too long. Hint hint:  Foundation problems likely will not just go away without intervention.
  • Spend money treating the symptom before you treat the cause. If you don’t get at the root cause of the problem, you may end up just having to tear it out later. Contact us if you are unsure of what your next steps will be. We are happy to look at any photos you send over and help you navigate the process.
  • Forget to keep up on regular maintenance like clearing out drainage pipes and gutters. While it is an essential life force, water can sometimes be your worst enemy. This is especially true when it comes to your home’s foundation.  Keeping drainage systems flowing as intended will help to protect your home from water infiltration, as well as other potential foundation issues.
  • Hire a company that claims to “waterproof” your basement from the inside.  If their plans don’t include exterior excavation or they want to install an interior drainage system and sump pump, beware.  They are likely offering to install a ‘water management’ system, not truly waterproofing your home. Watch this video for more information on waterproofing.
  • Cover your home’s façade with landscaping or direct water towards your home. It is advised that soil should be at least 4″ below the top of a foundation with a brick exterior.  For non-masonry siding this should be 8″ below the top of the foundation.  All homes should have their yard (soil) slope away from the home at least 6″ within 10 feet.
  • Allow your gutters/downspouts to discharge water along your foundation. Your downspouts should discharge at least 6-10 feet away from your foundation. Code allows for far less, but it’s always best to move water as far away as possible from your home.
  • Be like the author of this post, one of the photos at the bottom is of my own home. It can happen to anyone, just deal with it as soon as you can.



  • Get an engineer involved for foundation/structural problems. Consult a licensed structural engineer if water is getting into your home, there is evident cracking, or you notice any shifting/movement occurring.
  • Document any leaking walls. Mark leaks on the wall; include an arrow with the point of infiltration and the date. A permanent marker works well for this. This will allow you to monitor the situation and recall exactly where the leak was to inform the engineer and contractors going forward.
  • Pay attention when it rains. If it is safe to do so, walk around your property when it rains. Notice any pooling, or water flowing where it shouldn’t be, and inspect your basement for signs of moisture.
  • Your due diligence. Remember that hiring someone to do “work” does not always equal “repair”. Make sure anyone you hire is licensed, bonded and insured. And make sure that with anything structural, they require an engineer to evaluate the problem first. That way you don’t waste your money, or worse, pay for something that is unsafe.

Want to know more about the do’s and don’ts of foundation repair and maintenance? Check out our website for past projects and information.

Have a specific question? Reach out to our office directly via our contact form or by phone.  We look forward to hearing from you.

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