2 Ways Your Basement's Foundational Walls May Have Been Damaged During Harsh Winter Weather

Posted on: 9 March 2021

After a long winter of harsh winter storms full of heavy amounts of snow and ice, you may be relieved that your home's exterior structure seems to have come through it undamaged. However, while the roof and siding may have survived the weather, there is a possibility that your home's foundational walls surrounding the basement may have been damaged. There are a couple of ways that your basement's foundational walls may have been damaged during the past winter, which would warrant the attention of a professional.

1.  Ice May Have Increased the Size of Tiny Cracks in the Foundation Walls

One adverse effect that the wintry weather may have had on your basement walls is that the ice may have increased the sizes of any cracks, holes, or other types of damage that may have already been present. During a cold snap following a severe storm, ice may have settled into the damaged areas.

As the snow and ice on your home melts and runs along the exterior foundation, it can make its way into these cracks and holes. Then, when the temperatures drop below freezing, the ice that forms will expand, pushing outward and creating larger gaps in the foundation.

As these damaged areas increase in size, the likelihood that water can leak through the foundation and into your basement also increases. Having a professional pinpoint these problem areas and take actions to waterproof them can help prevent water leakage into your basement.

2.  Softened Soil Around the Exterior of the Basement Walls May Have Caused Shifting

Another issue caused by extreme winter weather typically comes in the aftermath once the temperatures start to rise. As the snow and ice melt, it saturates the soil around your foundation, often softening the ground to the point that it no longer provides sturdy support to the structure. 

Once the soil adjacent to the exterior foundational walls becomes soft, the basement walls may start to shift. This can form cracks and small gaps in the corners of the space that will lead to water leaks if they are not taken care of as soon as possible.

Especially after a season of harsh winter weather, your home's foundation and basement walls may have sustained damage that could lead to leaks once the spring rains come. Contact a contractor who offers basement waterproofing services to have them do an inspection to pinpoint potential problem areas and discuss what needs to be done to keep the water from coming inside.

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