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Image of “Horizontal crack in basement foundation.

Foundation Repair Talk

Should You Put Off That Foundation Repair?

June 2023 Blog Header image


If you’re like most Edmonton homeowners, you’re not a fan of unexpected surprises that can stretch your budget. Unfortunately, no matter how careful you are, unexpected expenses come with the territory.

Foundation problems certainly fall into that category, and they also often qualify as one of the more expensive home repairs you can do.


What causes foundation to degrade?

When your home is built on clay-heavy soils that expand or contract as it absorbs or loses moisture, this process can cause your foundation to either heave or sag over time, putting it under so much stress that it can eventually start to crack, losing its strength and structural integrity.

Here are a few telltale indicators of a foundation problem on the horizon:

  • Cracks in walls, either upstairs or downstairs, inside, or outside.
  • Doors and windows that stick or won’t close properly.
  • Sagging/sinking floors.
  • Signs of moisture appearing anywhere in the basement.
  • Unpleasant odors wafting up from below.
  • Mold, mildew, or insect infestations.
  • Basement drafts.


Image of “Horizontal crack in basement foundation.
Horizontal crack in basement foundation
Image of Water damage hidden behind a basement wall.
Water damage hidden behind a basement wall


In situations like these, repairs should not be ignored. However, you may be tempted to hold off since
early-stage foundation problems may seem more like inconveniences than indicators of a crisis. That
said, procrastinating on foundation repairs will always cause you bigger trouble in the long run.



What can expect when ignoring an emerging foundation problem?

Escalating repair costs.

The slow decay of a home’s foundation is progressive and will only get worse the longer it is left unattended.

If you neglect a developing foundation problem for a few days, weeks or even months, it may not be too serious. But if you wait a year or more, you may end up with higher repair bills. The sooner you deal with an emerging foundation problem at the very first sign of trouble, the lower the eventual repair costs may be.

Increased likelihood of structural damage.

When a foundation is weakened it causes a domino effect, putting excessive stress and strain on the structure it was designed to support.

Walls, floors, ceilings, wooden cross beams, upstairs walls, doors, window frames, and even attached garages can be affected. There’s no telling how extensive the damage may be if degradation is allowed to progress unchecked.


Water damage.

Wooden structural features in a home are especially vulnerable to water damage, which is almost guaranteed once cracks and crevices begin to appear in basement walls and foundation slabs. If you use your basement for storage or living space, anything you keep there may be at risk if water is allowed to seep-in undeterred.

Crumbling and cracking in a foundation can result in moisture penetration. The longer it goes on the greater the chance of water damage.


Plumbing nightmares.

Pipes below the foundation are particularly vulnerable to breakage because of subsoil expansion or contraction that lifts, drops, and dislocates the concrete slab. These problems can be difficult to diagnose without a professional evaluation.

Above-ground water pipes that run through walls and beneath floors can also be damaged when foundations shift.


Mold and mildew issues.

Insects love moisture and darkness, but mold and mildew are even more fond of wet below-ground conditions. Like insects, these fungal invaders can cause lasting damage.

Mold and mildew spores can set off allergy and asthma attacks that will leave you and your family scratching, sneezing, wheezing, coughing, and feeling generally sick and miserable.


Higher utility bills.

Most homes are constructed to be generally airtight, but a foundation damaged by hydrostatic pressure can transfer excess moisture upward into the living areas above, causing cracks, crevices, warps, and sudden separations to appear in structural features. As humid air is pulled upward from your crawl space or basement, your air conditioner may have to work harder to keep indoor temperatures comfortable and resulting higher utility bills.


A decline in property value.

If you have a foundation that is failing, it could cost a new owner several thousand to repair, and before your sales transaction is complete a third-party home inspection will reveal the existence of such an issue.

Looking to sell or buy a new home? Shield Foundation Repair offers some timely advice on the Home Inspections Page.


Image of a Shield foundation specialist inspecting a home exterior for damage
Shield foundation specialist inspects a home exterior for damage

Longer waiting times for service.

One great thing about early-stage repairs is that you can arrange them before foundation damage and its side effects get completely out of hand. Especially during spring and summer in Alberta, foundation companies are often booked for several weeks in advance.


Your Biggest Money Saver? Preventive Maintenance.

The most efficient way to protect your foundation is to have it evaluated by a professional at the first hint of trouble. The cost of a preventive evaluation is normally very reasonable.

At Shield Foundation Repair, our foundation experts can detect problems at the earliest possible stage, often before damage is visible to the untrained eye.


Damaged foundations won’t get better on their own, but you may be able to take corrective action before it gets any worse. Protect what matters most – Call Shield Foundation Repair today at 780 760 4900. We’ll assess your home and fix your foundation the right way.