Whether on your home walls or floors, cracks can sometimes be unsettling despite them being natural. While some of these are harmless, others can be caused by major changes that jeopardize the structural integrity of your home, especially those on the flooring.
If you have concrete foundations, it is likely that concrete shrinkage has caused multiple cracks over time. Foundation Crack Expert Group will help you determine whether or not you should worry.
Concrete shrinkage cracks: a physical phenomenon
Foundation cracks are inevitable because the frequent freeze and thaw cycle of Quebec winters creates a strong pressure on your soil, which resists and breaks down. Structure-altering soil movement also make matters worse.
Not all concrete structure imperfections are caused by weather conditions, some may be caused by time or concrete hardening
If you have a concrete foundation, it is very likely that cracks appeared in the months following its construction. If no other major incident happened, these were likely caused by a physical phenomenon called concrete shrinkage. Concrete is a water-based material, so when it dries, the water evaporates and heavier particles are drawn to the ground, causing drying cracks. These can appear up to 15 months after pouring and usually develop near windows or doors.
Concrete shrinkage: should you worry?
Although cracks do not always weaken the structure or foundation of your home, it is still important to take concrete shrinkage cracks seriously. They should not be a problem if they are no more than 3 mm wide, but they can cause several problems in the short and long term if they are larger.
Beware of cracks wider than 3mm
Foundation cracks may lead to water infiltration or mold, potentially affecting your health or causing a dangerous structural weakening of your home.
Freezing periods can also worsen water leaks in the cracks of your foundation because water expands when it freezes, enlarging and deepening your cracks. You should therefore intervene quickly in such circumstances.
Are you worried about your foundations? Contact a professional
Although you shouldn’t worry about all cracks caused by concrete shrinkage, it is important to remain vigilant. We recommend carefully inspecting your foundations to detect possible problems. If you notice cracks, contact our specialists. They will offer you solutions adapted to your situation and take care of your foundation problems.