Home inspection dallas garland foundation repair

Can You Trust a Home Inspection Report?

During the purchase of a home you will no doubt contract with a home inspector to look everything over at the house. There is a section for structural systems on the report. Rarely in north Texas does an inspection come back “clean” in this section. Do not panic! Inspectors are trained to point out any issue they can find. It does not necessarily mean you have a structural problem that requires repair. The bottom line is: the average inspector has limited training on foundation types and problems. If you get a report that is dinged in this section, simply call us for help! Our foundation repair experts can investigate the issues brought up by the home inspector and give you a true evaluation of the seriousness of the problem and whether or not it will adversely affect the home’s value.

An inspection report is an integral part of the home-buying process. After all, you want to be sure your future home sweet home is up to par with building codes. However, exactly how reliable are these home inspection reports?

What Does a Home Inspection Report Include?

When touring a prospective future home, it’s not enough to just admire the granite countertops or built-in redwood cabinetry. A report evaluates what isn’t visible to the untrained eye. A home inspection is thorough and detects defects that would entail costly repairs. This may include:

  • Pipe leaks and other plumbing issues, including furnaces and heaters
  • Faulty electrical wiring
  • Energy efficiency deficiencies
  • The condition of the roof
  • HVAC, heating and cooling systems
  • The condition of the foundation

Home sellers in Texas will usually need to acquire a home report for prospective buyers. Home buyers may also acquire their own report. Detected defects can be used as a bargaining chip for bringing down the cost. Aside from sellers and buyers, home builders may also need to acquire a report if they’re selling a new and recently constructed home. The same goes for extensively renovated homes that have yet to be occupied in their remodeled state.

How Reliable Is the Report?

Inspectors may not be trained in every single one of the above points. They may only have a baseline knowledge. As such, they may miss small details that may manifest as more severe problems a few years down the road. This is especially true with respect to the foundation. This component requires very specialized knowledge that an inspector trained to look at the whole home may not possess.

A home inspector’s report is not necessarily unreliable. It is indeed a very vital aspect of the home transaction process. However, it should not be the end of the story. Both home buyers and sellers should perform a crosscheck when evaluating qualified inspectors. They should also be willing to bring in another inspector for a second opinion if they have any reason to question the validity of the original inspector’s findings.

You Can Rely on Our Dallas-Fort Worth Foundation Repair Experts

Our Dallas-Fort Worth foundation repair service areas encompass Plano and surrounding regions. Whether you’re a home buyer or seller, call Align Foundation Repair if a home inspector report lists foundational damage in its initial findings.

 

Cracked Ceiling Repair

Ceiling Cracks Offer Important Clues about Your Foundation

Ceiling cracks plague many homes in Plano, Texas, and the surrounding Dallas area. At best, they look unsightly. But at worst, they could flag an issue with your home’s foundation. So what’s really causing those cracks in your ceiling? And perhaps most importantly, what should you do about them?

Types of Ceiling Cracks

It’s important to educate yourself about the different types of cracks and their causes to avoid costly repairs down the road.

Knowing the difference between the types of ceiling cracks can save your home. First, it’s important to realize that all homes will move over time. This movement results from several factors, which we discuss later in this blog. However, cracks usually occur as the byproduct of one of two things:  natural aging or structural damage. Here are some of the most common cracks and what they can reveal.

“Spider Web” Cracks

These cracks have a center point and then spread out in different directions. The good news: these cracks are a regular part of settling and can occur in ceilings, walls, even floors. However, when it comes to spider web cracks, size matters. If the cracks are small, there isn’t much to get anxious about. On the other hand, if they are more than 1/16 inch wide, there could be a more significant structural problem.

Matching Vertical Cracks

Those cracks which run across the length of a ceiling and then continue down a wall along the same line point to structural damage, likely connected to a weak wall stud or something that was knocked loose in the settling of the home over time. Once again, size is relevant here.

Cracks along the Edges

Cracks along the edges of walls are usually the result of normal settling. You don’t have to be hyper-vigilant about these, but as a precaution, it’s a smart idea to mark where they start and finish so that you can monitor any growth. It’s those cracks that run across the entire length of the ceiling that can signal trouble. In these extreme cases, one or more foundation repair services may be necessary to avoid further damage and dangerous instability.

Causes of Ceiling Cracks

What causes cracks in ceilings? Now that you’re informed about the primary kinds of ceiling cracks, let’s take a look at some of the causes and how they impact your ceilings.

Moisture

One of the most common reasons is massive moisture damage from above the ceiling. Depending on which floor of your home you’re talking about, this could mean moisture has seeped into the floor above the ceiling. If it’s the upper level of your home, this may point to damage to the roof. Other sources may include plumbing leaks from the floor above. Significant changes in temperature can lead to cracks. As the air warms, building materials in your home will expand because they are exposed to excess moisture. Conversely, as the temperature drops, they will contract. Switching between hot and cold can put stress on the ceiling materials and joints, and lead to cracking.

Too Much Weight

A cracked ceiling either has another floor or attic space directly above it. So it’s entirely possible that the area above the ceiling is carrying too much weight. Prime examples are upper-level bathrooms; they need specific ceiling supports to bear the heavy weight of fixtures. Shortcuts taken during construction could lead to sagging or cracking.

Inferior Foundation

What do cracks in the ceiling mean for the future of your home’s foundation? A substandard foundation can cause a variety of structural problems, including damage to the ceiling. Remember this: the integrity of the foundation affects every component of your house. The minutest movement or settling in the foundation can alter load-bearing beams and cause small or large cracks.

Contact Align Foundation Today

Cracks in the ceiling aren’t just ugly to look at. They might also mean your home’s foundation is at risk. When in doubt, call the foundation repair experts at Align Foundation Repair. We know when a crack is a minor aesthetic problem and when it could be something more serious! If you would like a free professional evaluation of your foundation in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area, contact us today and ensure a solid foundation for the future of your home.