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Bowing Walls

Foundation walls move inward primarily due to expansive soils and hydrostatic pressure on the walls from outside.

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The Problem

Your foundation walls are bowing, buckling or are showing signs of inward movement.

Telltale Signs:
  • Horizontal or stair-step cracking along the foundation walls
  • Diagonal cracking at corners of poured concrete foundation walls
  • Inward bowing or bulging along the walls
  • Walls sliding inwards on the bottom
  • Walls leaning in at the top
  • Wet, clay soils around the home coupled with damaged walls
  • Expansive clay soils present around the structure
How to Fix It:
wall anchor close up shot

Install SettleStop™ Wall Anchors along the bowing walls, and use the system’s clamping pressure to stabilize and restore the wall.

When space issues prohibit wall anchor installation, we recommend installing the SettleStop IntelliBrace™ Wall System.

Signs of bowing foundation walls

Foundation walls move inward primarily due to expansive soils and hydrostatic pressure on the walls from outside. However, foundation walls may also crack due to many other outside causes, including foundation settlement. Our foundation experts will accurately identify the cause of your home’s foundation problems.

Below are images of several foundations that are showing damage from hydrostatic pressure and expansive soils outside the structure.

What Causes Cracked & Bowing Foundation Walls?

The soils around your home can put enormous pressure on foundation walls. The amount of pressure they exert depends on four factors:

  1. The type of soil around the foundation
  2. The amount of moisture in the soil
  3. How far underground the foundation is
  4. The temperature conditions

There’s constant pressure on your foundation walls from the outside, but the only thing holding up your foundation wall is the wall itself. Hydrostatic pressure, expansive clay soil, and frost can all exert enough pressure to cause walls to lean or even collapse.

Gutters and downspouts can also contribute significantly to foundation problems.

If roof runoff is not directed away from your foundation, the soil around the foundation will become heavier and more expansive as it’s saturated with water.

Installing Foundation Wall Anchors

At ITG Basements, we recommend the SettleStop™ Wall Anchor System, to stabilize failing foundation walls. Our contractors follow these six steps when installing our warrantied wall anchor system:

1. Digging Holes For the Earth Anchors

Before the installation, earth anchor locations will be determined to maximize system effectiveness. When the foundation contractors arrive, their proposal will show the location of each earth anchor in the yard outside your house.

Before the installation, earth anchor locations will be determined to maximize system effectiveness. When the foundation contractors arrive, their proposal will show the location of each earth anchor in the yard outside your house.

At the beginning of each earth anchor installation, sod is carefully removed from your lawn and placed aside for later. A sheet is laid down to help protect your lawn and landscaping, and an earth anchor hole is made using a power auger.

2. Preparing The Foundation Wall

Once the hole has been excavated, we will core a small hole through your basement wall. Then, a steel anchor rod will be driven through the wall and soil, extending through a hole in the center of the earth anchor.

One way our wall anchor system is superior to other methods is that the hole created in the foundation wall is very small – 1″ in diameter. Other methods may require a large hole or section of concrete block to be removed during installation.

3. Attaching The Earth Anchor

After securing the end of each anchor rod to its earth anchor, these assemblies are buried in the ground, using soil removed earlier. To resist corrosion damage, each of our earth anchor systems is designed with galvanized steel.

Each of the SettleStop™ Earth Anchors we install includes a 25-year warranty against manufacturing defects, as well as our own in-house quality and performance warranty.

4. Mounting The Wall Plate

Once the earth anchors have been installed, our foundation repair experts will mount a wall plate over each anchor rod end that protrudes from the basement wall. Screwing a large nut to the threaded end of the anchor rod secures each wall plate and stabilizes the wall as the nut is tightened.

Once the earth anchors have been installed, our foundation repair experts will mount a wall plate over each anchor rod end that protrudes from the basement wall. Screwing a large nut to the threaded end of the anchor rod secures each wall plate and stabilizes the wall as the nut is tightened.

5. Restoring The Landscaping

At ITG Basements, we take pride in leaving each job clean, neat, and free of damage to existing landscaping. As part of our cleanup process, we fill holes completely with dirt saved earlier and tamp filled areas to ensure that depressed areas will not be created as the soils settle over time. We will also replace all sod, carefully grooming it with a rake to help it to blend in with surrounding grass for a seamless landscaping restoration.

When Foundation Wall Anchors Won’t Work

In some cases, a wall anchor system can’t be used to repair a bowing wall because the yard outside the house isn’t accessible.

When we at ITG Basements encounter this kind of problem, we suggest that you install our SettleStop IntelliBrace™ Foundation Wall System.

The SettleStop IntelliBrace™ System

The SettleStop IntelliBrace™ is a patented foundation wall repair system designed to stabilize failing basement walls and also allow for potential straightening over time.

This product is a great option when access to the yard outside of the home is not possible and bowing, buckling wall problems need to be solved.

The SettleStop IntelliBrace™ is an I-beam system that has several advantages over traditional “old school” systems.

This includes its rust-resistant zinc coating and a design that makes it possible not only to stabilize bowing walls but also to straighten these walls over a period of time.

Installation of a SettleStop IntelliBrace™ system can be conducted quickly in your home, with no disruption to your lawn, gardens, foliage, or other landscaping.

What NOT To Do

A foundation repair is a big job — something you definitely only want to do once! When you’re repairing your foundation, beware of expensive options that will not actually fix your problem — and watch out for quick solutions that just don’t work.

Total Foundation Replacement:

To undertake a job like this, you have to excavate the entire perimeter of your foundation — including gardens, shrubbery, sidewalks, and other landscaping.

Next, the house is jacked up, and the floor slab and foundation walls are removed. Finally, the foundation is rebuilt, the house is repositioned and the soil is replaced.

This solution is extremely disruptive, expensive, and time consuming. What’s worse, it’s not really addressing the issue.

Your foundation isn’t the problem — the soil is! When you’re done building that brand new foundation, you can count on the soil to cause damage just like it did before.

If you’re going to invest money in repairing your foundation, choose the solution that is not disruptive and will be warrantied for 25 years.

Looking For Foundation Wall Repair Experts In Pennsylvania?

At ITG Basements, we’re proud to provide warrantied solutions that will permanently solve issues with bowing, buckling foundation walls.

We provide free, no-obligation foundation wall repair estimates to homeowners throughout our Pennsylvania service area. Each estimate is made in person, on site, and is presented in writing.

Our service area includes Scranton, Reading, Allentown, and nearby areas such as Wilkes Barre, Bethlehem, Altoona, Harrisburg, State College, Williamsport, York. Call or e-mail us today!

LET OUR FOUNDATION REPAIR EXPERTS HELP

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LET OUR FOUNDATION REPAIR EXPERTS HELP

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Proudly Serving Eastern & Central PA - Including Allentown, Harrisburg, Scranton, Bethlehem, Lancaster, & Altoona

ITG Basements

315 Point Township Drive
Northumberland, PA 17857