Although everybody appreciates having a majestic tree on their property, it makes sense to wonder if it can put your home at risk. Despite its beauty, a tree can be a significant threat to your home’s foundation.
Here is some useful information on the risks concerning the growth of tree roots near your home.
How tree roots can affect the ground near foundations
Even the smallest roots are very powerful. Because they are in constant search of water and nutrients, tree roots grow continuously and the impact of this depends on the soil type where the tree is planted. There are two soil types particularly affected by root growth in different ways.
Clay soil is easily compacted and becomes more dense with the presence of tree roots. On the other hand, soil composed of loose earth and rock tends to shift, allowing the roots to easily make their way through. The type of soil under your home is a good indicator of the damage tree roots could cause to your home’s foundation or a concrete pool.
Weather can also be a factor in how trees affect soil. Roots can contract and shrink during droughts if the clay soil dehydrates, whereas they can expand by absorbing water during periods of heavy rain. These shrinkages and expansions can damage land structure by creating gaps below the surface.
How tree roots are harmful to concrete foundations
Contrary to popular belief, the direct cause of foundation damages is not tree roots themselves, but changes in soil conditions. The stability of the soil can be threatened as a result of changes in soil compaction.
Concrete is likely to move and crack when it settles, and these movements can affect the general structure of your home. In extreme cases, especially in older houses, a structure as a whole can suffer damages due to the movement of support beams, cracks and leaks in walls, or uneven ceilings. Do not underestimate the risk of roots near your foundations.
Getting your concrete foundations repaired
If you’ve noticed flaws in your foundation and think tree roots or soil conditions may be the cause, contact a concrete foundation expert to inspect your foundations. Further complications will be avoided and a variety of repair options will be presented to you.