Foundation Repair and Reinforcement
Fix basement walls permanently with Fortress Stabilization Systems
Foundation cracks and bowing of walls are common but can be permanently fixed.
A foundation’s primary purpose, whether it is block, poured, or stone, is to support the compressive load of the building. However, these building components are generally weak in tensile strength and lateral forces. Thus, concrete and other building materials incorporate reinforcing materials, such as rebar, to increase the lateral load capacity of the foundation wall. Sometimes, these reinforcing methods are not enough and lateral forces can overcome the strength of the wall. The result is either cracked and/or bowed walls which can compromise the integrity of your foundation and home.
Bowed Basement or Foundation Walls: their Cause and Solution
Bowed Basement or Foundation Walls occur as a result of soil loads pushing against the wall. Compounded with depth and other factors and the lateral forces surpass the foundation’s original resistance to these loads. Over time, these factors can produce lateral bending and the foundation or basement wall becomes bowed. This condition also produces significant cracking. If left unattended this condition will worsen with time jeopardizing both the structural integrity and resale value of the property.
Bowed basement or foundation walls can be straightened but require excavation of foundation, lifting the weight of the structure off of the wall and pushing the wall back to as close to plumb as possible. Even after this is accomplished, the wall itself has lost the structural integrity and requires reinforcement. You can also reinforce a bowed concrete foundation or basement wall that is still within tolerance at its current condition without straightening. Historically, I-beams were used to correct a bowed basement or foundation wall by erecting the beams in a fashion that provides lateral concrete reinforcement. While remaining an effective method, installation can be expensive and the end result is obtrusive beams sticking out from the wall. In addition, the cracks which have undoubtedly occurred as a result of the bowed basement or foundation wall are not addressed.
Bowed basement walls can be resolved using the latest carbon-fiber technology developed by Fortress Stabilization Systems. Using carbon-fiber kevlar sheet straps in combination with specifically designed epoxies, bowed basement walls can now be repaired and arrested with little to no obtrusiveness. The repaired bowed basement wall can then be painted thereby creating an almost invisible repair, thereby increasing the resale value of your home.
How to Repair Foundation Basement Wall Cracks
Foundations and other cement structures will often crack as a result of settling, soil pressure, water damage, drying shrinkage, thermal movement, or other causes. As most homeowners know, basement wall fractures are common and a fact of life. Most fractures are minor and cause few problems. However, other fractures can grow over time and cause structural integrity or, more commonly, water leakage.
If the fracture is large or growing over time, simple injection techniques are not an appropriate or lasting fix. Under these circumstances, the foundation repair must stabilize the fracture, i.e., prevent it from expanding and getting larger. To accomplish this, reinforcement and stabilization is required.
There are 6 ways in which a cement fracture in a below-grade poured wall generally moves:
Tensile/inward: due to lateral loading
Outward: due to shrinkage of soils
Opening: due to thermal changes
Closing: due to thermal changes, i.e. cold, wet, dry, etc.
Shear: due to differential loading
Combination: all of the above conditions, plus the added load of the structure
Concrete crack repair employing the Fortress Stabilization Systems Carbon Fiber Countersunk Staples are designed to transfer load away from the fracture, thus addressing the 6-points defined above and creates a long-lasting fix. Concrete crack repair and stopping shifting walls with Carbon-fiber is a proven application and technology that works as well in your home as in commercial buildings, bridges, mines, road surfaces, and in any other applications where reinforcement and reparation are needed.