Today, thanks to popular TV shows and sites like YouTube that are chock full of DIY videos, more homeowners than ever are tackling home improvement projects themselves. Some do it because they want to save money, while others just like the idea – or perhaps the challenge – of doing it themselves. There’s certainly nothing wrong with this. Painting walls, installing a new kitchen floor, or a complete bathroom remodel can be a rewarding experience that brings a couple – or even an entire family – together. Most DIY home improvement projects can be successfully completed after doing a little research and gathering supplies from your local hardware store.
Why DIY Foundation Repairs Are Not A Good Idea
Foundation repair is complex and competency requires years of on-the-job experience. Yes, there are some repairs homeowners can successfully do themselves. Crack repair using either crack injection epoxy, or carbon fiber reinforcement is one such example. However, correcting foundation settlement via underpinning or performing other repairs to lift, level, and stabilize a foundation are not DIY projects.
If a DIY project isn’t successful, a professional foundation repair contractor will need to not only perform the original repair, but perhaps repair any damage caused by the DIY attempt as well.
Of course, when you hire a reputable, established foundation repair contractor, you get a warranty on the repair. When you DIY, there is no warranty. This can sometimes be a deal breaker when it comes to a real estate transaction.
The 3 DIY Foundation Repairs Most Likely To Go Wrong
Over the years we’ve been called to intervene and repair many DIY projects gone wrong. Three common DIY foundation repairs that fail are…
Think Carefully Before Attempting A DIY Foundation Repair.
The idea of saving money appeals to everyone. However, an unsuccessful DIY foundation repair could mean even more money spent if a professional foundation repair contractor needs to come out and repair both the original problem, and the damage caused by the DIY fix as well. Since no DIY repair is free, any money spent on materials needed for the DIY foundation repair will be lost.
If you suspect that your home has foundation problems, a better solution is to contact a registered, experienced structural or geotechnical engineer and have them come out for an inspection and then, based on that, write up a repair plan.
If the inspection finds that there has been some differential settlement that needs to be corrected, and the foundation is able to be repaired (rather than replaced), the most likely solution will use either push piers or helical piers. The safe, proper installation of these products requires the use of hydraulics along with in-depth training. That’s why only foundation repair contractors trained in the installation of these piers have access to them.
Common Signs Of Foundation Problems
One of the most common questions we get asked is, “Do I have a foundation problem?” Well, you might if you’re experiencing any of the following…
- Sloping floors
- Ceiling cracks
- Cracks in walls
- Windows and doors that stick
Unless it’s a minor fix, foundation repair is a job for professionals. They have the experience, the equipment, and the safety protocol knowledge necessary to perform major foundation repairs. If money is a concern, rest assured you’ll save more by paying a foundation professional to do the work. Also DIY repairs don’t come with a warranty!