As homeowners, addressing foundation repair is often a necessary yet complex undertaking. This guide is designed to provide you with a comprehensive understanding of the process, answering prevalent questions regarding the financial implications, insurance coverage, duration of repairs, and material selection. We aim to furnish you with the requisite knowledge to navigate these repairs with confidence. Our discussion will encompass a variety of scenarios to ensure you are well-prepared for any foundation-related challenges your property may present. Let us proceed to elucidate the intricacies of foundation repair, ensuring you are thoroughly informed about the decisions ahead.
In Texas, the cost of foundation repair can be quite variable, with minor repairs starting from just a few hundred dollars to more significant restorations potentially exceeding $25,000. On average, homeowners might expect to pay around $4,000, but prices can range between $1,800 and $6,500 depending on the extent of the damage. It’s also noted that concrete slab repair can range from $1,000 to $10,000, while more intricate repairs like those for pier and beam could range from $2,000 to $15,000.
Foundation repair coverage by insurance in Texas is a complex matter. Homeowner policies generally don’t cover foundation repair unless the damage is caused by specific events. Insurance may cover repairs resulting from fire or water damage related to heating or plumbing. However, most foundation issues, often due to soil or construction, are not covered. It’s essential to check the details of your insurance policy and the cause of the damage when seeking coverage.
The duration of foundation repair in Texas can vary. Minor repairs can be completed within a few days, but more extensive damage could require several weeks. Most foundation repairs take between one to three days, but this timeframe can be extended depending on the project’s complexity and the foundation’s size.
The type of cement used for foundation repair depends on the specific issue at hand. For standard repairs, all-purpose cement is commonly used. However, hydraulic cement, such as Portland cement, is recommended for water damage because it sets and hardens quickly, even underwater. Calcium aluminate cement (CAC) is also gaining popularity due to its high resistance to chemical attacks and rapid setting in colder temperatures.
The best method for foundation repair can vary greatly depending on the type of foundation and the nature of the problem. However, I need to gather more detailed information on the best methods tailored to specific foundation types or damages to provide a thorough recommendation. Would you like me to do that?
When it comes to the stability of your home, concrete piling plays a pivotal role. Homeowners often have a host of questions about this specific aspect of foundation support. In this section, we will address those frequently asked questions related to concrete piling. From understanding what concrete piling is and when it’s necessary, to discussing its longevity and the process of installation, we aim to provide clarity. We’ll also touch on the cost factors and how concrete piling compares to other foundation solutions. Whether you’re facing foundation issues or planning preventative measures, we’ll guide you through the essentials of concrete piling to help ensure your home stands on firm ground.
The cost of concrete piling typically ranges from $200 to $400 per linear foot, including installation and necessary reinforcement. For example, a 40-foot structure with four 12-inch diameter pilings could cost between $10,000 and $16,000.
The installation time for concrete piling can vary. For smaller projects like a house extension, the process can take 2-3 days. Larger projects may take a few weeks to complete, considering the number of piles needed and the equipment used.
When using bored piles, a cylindrical tube is created by removing subsoil, which is then filled with concrete. The size of the trench is essentially the diameter of the pile. Driven piles, on the other hand, displace subsoil and don’t require managing excavated material.
Concrete foundations, including piles, can last from 100 to 200 years on average. This duration can extend to over 400 years for extremely well-built structures or reduced to 25 years for poorly constructed ones. The longevity of concrete piles also depends on the environment, with marine environments enhancing durability.
The spacing of piles varies based on the guidelines followed. In the UK, for end-bearing piles, the spacing is calculated as 2.5 times the pile diameter plus 0.02 times the length of the pile. For cohesion piles, the spacing is 3.5 times the diameter plus 0.02 times the length. The Indian Road Congress suggests a minimum spacing of three times the pile diameter for friction piles.
When it comes to foundation settlement, homeowners often find themselves with a host of questions. Addressing these concerns, we’ve compiled a comprehensive list of frequently asked questions regarding foundation settlement. This section aims to provide insights into what foundation settlement is, how to identify it, the potential causes, and the best remediation techniques. We’ll also discuss the timeline for addressing settlement issues, the risks of delaying repairs, and the impact of various soil types on foundation stability. Understanding the nuances of foundation settlement is crucial for maintaining the structural integrity of your home. Our goal is to offer clear, actionable information to help you make informed decisions about protecting and repairing your home’s foundation. Whether you’re currently facing settlement issues or are looking to prevent future problems, this guide serves as a valuable resource for navigating the complexities of foundation settlement.
Foundation settlement is typically caused by changes in the soil beneath the foundation, such as the reduction of volume air void ratio in the soil, poor soil compaction, changes in soil moisture levels, weak soil composition, and improper drainage. Other factors include leakage of sewage water, inadequate bearing capacity of the soil, and external vibrations near to the foundation.
The cost to repair a settling foundation can vary significantly, with minor crack repairs starting as low as $500 and major repairs involving hydraulic piers costing $10,000 or more. The average cost for piering and underpinning issues ranges from $1,000 to $2,000 per pier, with an average home requiring 8-10 piers. If the foundation issues have led to deeper problems like leaks, the costs could be between $2,000 to $6,000.
Foundation settlement can be measured using various instruments such as settlement plates, settlement gauges, inclinometers, extensometers, and optical leveling. These methods involve both field measurements and analytical methods to estimate the settlement. A simple method is to measure off of mortar joints, as the straight, level lines made by masons can indicate deviations caused by settlement.
It’s time to be concerned about foundation settling when you observe horizontal cracks on foundation walls, cracks in floors, foundation cracks at a 45-degree angle, or gaps between walls and cabinets. Other signs include cracks that grow longer and wider over time, indicating that the foundation is shifting further.
The symptoms of foundation settling include noticeable cracks in walls and floors, uneven floors, stuck windows or doors, and gaps where walls and floors meet. You may also see that floors begin to bow, sink, or become uneven, and there may be a separation between walls and floors even if the movement is slight.
When it comes to slab foundation repair, there’s a trove of questions homeowners frequently seek answers for. This section is dedicated to shedding light on those common inquiries regarding slab foundation repair. We aim to provide a thorough understanding of what slab foundation issues entail, including the identification of problems, various repair methods, cost considerations, and timelines for repair. We’ll also explore signs that indicate the need for repair, preventative measures to minimize the risk of damage, and the importance of professional assessments. Whether you are currently dealing with slab foundation concerns or are interested in proactive maintenance, this guide serves as an informative resource to navigate the specifics of slab foundation repair. It’s designed to arm you with knowledge, so you’re well-prepared to make the best decisions for your home’s foundation health.
A well-constructed slab foundation can last over 100 years. The longevity of a slab foundation is contingent upon proper design and construction, along with the soil conditions and environmental factors it’s exposed to. However, improper installation, moisture, and shifting soil can significantly reduce its lifespan, with some poorly built foundations beginning to deteriorate after just 25 years.
Slab foundations may crack due to a variety of reasons, including climate extremes causing expansion and contraction, soil problems like erosion or excessive moisture, changes in moisture levels, pressure from tree roots, and natural settling. Construction quality also plays a role, with poor construction practices often leading to cracks.
The best foundation repair method depends on the specific issue. Slab jacking is less invasive and is effective for slabs that have lost leveling. Underpinning provides a new foundation without disturbing the original structure, making it suitable for increasing or replacing the existing foundation. Piering, including steel and helical piers, is another method that supports the foundation in all soil conditions.
The primary cause of foundation settlement is typically the soil beneath the foundation. Factors such as the reduction of soil volume air void ratio, soil type and condition, load distribution, moisture changes, and environmental factors can all contribute to foundation settlement. Soils with high clay content, which shrink and expand with moisture changes, often lead to uneven settlement.
Not addressing a slab leak can lead to significant damage. Unrepaired leaks can cause the soil to become oversaturated, leading to shifts and settling of the foundation. This can result in more severe cracking, structural instability, and potentially costly repairs in the future. It’s critical to fix slab leaks promptly to prevent further damage to the foundation and the overall integrity of the structure.
Navigating the waters of foundation drainage can often lead to a pool of questions. In this essential section, we dive into the frequently asked questions about foundation drainage. We aim to channel your concerns into clear answers about what foundation drainage is, why it’s important, the different systems available, and how they work. We’ll also cover the signs that suggest your foundation’s drainage might be failing and the potential consequences of poor drainage. Whether you’re experiencing issues or just want to keep your home’s foundation dry and secure, this guide will shed light on the best practices for maintaining effective foundation drainage. It’s designed to provide homeowners with the knowledge needed to make informed decisions, ensuring the long-term stability and health of their homes’ foundations.
Draining water away from your house foundation is crucial to maintain the integrity of your home’s structure. One effective method is to ensure that the ground around your foundation slopes away from the house. This natural gradient will guide water away naturally. Additionally, keeping gutters clean and extending downspouts at least 5 feet from the foundation can prevent water from pooling around your home.
Installing a French drain around your foundation can be a hands-on project that involves digging a trench, laying down gravel, and installing a perforated pipe. This system captures water before it can reach the foundation and redirects it away from your home. It’s important to wrap the pipe in fabric to prevent clogging and cover it with more gravel. Lastly, the trench is backfilled with soil, creating a seamless look.
A foundation drain, often referred to as a French drain, is a trench filled with gravel or rock containing a perforated pipe that directs surface water and groundwater away from your home’s foundation. It’s a hidden system designed to prevent water from causing damage to the structure of your house.
In Texas, the cost of installing a foundation drain can vary widely depending on factors such as the size of your house and the complexity of the installation. Generally, you can expect to pay a range from $5,000 to $10,000 for a professional installation. Remember, this is an investment into the longevity of your home’s foundation.
The depth of a French drain around a foundation typically ranges between 18 to 24 inches. This depth allows the system to effectively capture excess water and redirect it away from your foundation, safeguarding your home against potential water damage. It’s important to consider the specific needs of your property, as some situations may require deeper or more complex drainage solutions.
Addressing the complexities of water management around a property, French drainage systems are a common topic of homeowner inquiry. This section aims to clarify frequently asked questions about French drains, which are an efficient solution for redirecting water away from a home’s foundation to prevent water damage and ensure structural integrity. We’ll delve into what French drains are, how they operate, their installation process, and the factors affecting their design and function. Additionally, we will explore the cost implications, maintenance requirements, and the potential impact on property value. Whether you’re dealing with existing water issues or proactively seeking to safeguard your home against future problems, this guide is crafted to navigate you through the essential information on French drainage systems.
To install a French drain, you’ll start by digging a trench that slopes away from your home’s foundation, ensuring water will flow in the right direction. Place a layer of gravel at the bottom, then lay a perforated pipe along the length of the trench, making sure it’s wrapped in landscaping fabric to prevent sediment from clogging it. Finally, cover the pipe with more gravel and replace the topsoil, concealing the drain while allowing water to filter through.
The main limitations of a French drain lie in its susceptibility to clogging from sediment or roots if not properly installed with a protective fabric. Additionally, French drains may not function effectively in areas with high clay content in the soil, as the water does not percolate well, or in locations with very flat terrain, where creating a sufficient slope for water movement is challenging.
Making a French drain involves excavating a trench, adding a layer of gravel, and placing a perforated pipe that’s been wrapped in filter fabric to catch water and direct it away from the area. It’s then covered with more gravel and topped with soil or grass. The design is relatively simple but requires proper execution to ensure efficiency and longevity.
A French drain can fail for several reasons, including improper installation, lack of an adequate slope, clogging from sediment or roots, or insufficient maintenance. If the trench isn’t sloped correctly, water won’t flow as needed. Over time, debris can fill the gravel and reduce its effectiveness, or the pipe itself can become blocked if not properly wrapped in fabric.
You should not install a French drain in areas with heavy tree root systems, as roots can grow into and clog the drain. Avoid placing a French drain near wells or septic systems to prevent contamination. It’s also important to keep them away from neighboring property lines unless you have proper drainage easements, as redirecting water can inadvertently cause water issues for others.
Delving into the realm of basement and foundation water management, sump pumps stand out as a critical line of defense. In this section, we address the frequently asked questions about sump pumps, aiming to provide homeowners with a deeper understanding of how these pumps work, when and why they are necessary, and the types available. We’ll also cover the installation process, maintenance tips to ensure optimal performance, and troubleshooting common issues. Additionally, we will discuss the cost considerations and the role of sump pumps in overall home waterproofing strategies. Whether you’re currently facing water accumulation challenges or simply wish to be prepared, this guide will equip you with the knowledge to make informed decisions regarding sump pump selection and care.
A sump pump is designed to remove accumulated water from a sump pit typically found in the basement of homes. The pump is activated when the water level in the pit rises to a certain point and works to prevent basement flooding by pumping out excess water and redirecting it away from the home, usually to a storm drain or dry well.
The lifespan of a sump pump depends on various factors, including the quality of the pump, the volume of water it needs to move, and the regularity of maintenance. On average, a sump pump can last anywhere from 7 to 10 years. Regularly testing and maintaining your sump pump can help extend its life.
The cost of a sump pump varies based on the type and capacity of the pump. A basic sump pump can range from $100 to $300, while a more advanced model with battery backup systems can cost between $500 and $1,000. Installation costs can also vary, generally ranging from $200 to $500, but can be more if extensive plumbing work is needed or if a new sump pit must be created.
The size of the sump pump you need depends on several factors, including the area of your basement, the volume of water to be moved, and the height the water needs to be lifted to be discharged (known as “head height”). Most residential sump pumps have a capacity ranging from 1/3 horsepower to 1 horsepower. A professional can assess your specific needs and recommend the proper size for your home.
When it comes to managing excess water in your yard, understanding surface drainage is crucial. This section is dedicated to answering frequently asked questions about surface drainage, the methods and systems designed to prevent water accumulation in outdoor areas. We’ll provide insights into how surface drainage systems work, the different types available, and their roles in safeguarding your property’s landscape and foundation. You’ll learn about the installation process, cost factors, and maintenance tips to keep your drainage system functioning efficiently. Whether you’re contending with puddles in your lawn, erosion in your garden, or water seeping toward your home, this guide will offer clear, actionable advice to help you resolve your surface water concerns and maintain a dry, healthy landscape.
Surface drainage is essential because it prevents water accumulation that can lead to flooding, reduces soil erosion, and protects your home’s foundation and landscaping. Effective surface drainage ensures that excess water from rain or irrigation is quickly and efficiently removed from areas where it could cause damage or inconvenience.
The major problems with surface drainage include the potential for over-saturation of soil, which can lead to flooding and damage to landscapes and structures. Poorly designed surface drainage systems can also result in standing water, which can become a breeding ground for pests like mosquitoes. Additionally, if surface water collects pollutants as it flows, it can contaminate local waterways.
The most effective method of surface drainage is a combination of proper land grading and a system of gutters and downspouts that direct water away from structures. Including slopes in landscaping that guide water to appropriate runoff areas, like street gutters or natural creeks, can greatly enhance the effectiveness of the drainage system.
Surface water should drain to designated areas where it won’t cause damage or erosion. This can be into storm sewers, natural watercourses, dry wells, or even into rain gardens that can absorb and filter the water. It’s important that the drainage complies with local regulations and does not negatively affect neighboring properties.
The cost of a surface drainage system varies widely based on the complexity of the project, the size of the area, and the materials used. In Texas, homeowners might expect to pay anywhere from a few hundred dollars for simple solutions to several thousand for more extensive systems that may involve professional landscaping and civil engineering work.
Gutters play a pivotal role in protecting your home’s structure by channeling water away from the foundation. In this section, we address the most commonly asked questions about gutter replacement to help homeowners make informed decisions. We will cover the signs that indicate the need for gutter replacement, the various types of gutters available, and the factors influencing their performance and durability. Whether you’re facing issues with your current gutter system or considering an upgrade, this guide will serve as a comprehensive resource for all your gutter replacement queries.
Gutter replacement costs can range significantly depending on the material used, the size of your house, and the complexity of the installation. In Texas, you might expect to pay anywhere from $4 to $30 per linear foot for gutter replacement. This translates to an overall range of about $500 to $2,000 for an average home, taking into account variations for material choices like vinyl, aluminum, or high-end copper gutters.
Yes, you can replace a section of gutter if it’s damaged or deteriorating. It’s a common repair job that doesn’t usually require the entire gutter system to be replaced. However, matching the new section with the existing guttering in terms of material, size, and color is important for both function and aesthetics.
Gutter replacement may be covered by insurance if the damage is caused by a covered peril, such as certain natural disasters. However, if gutters need to be replaced due to wear and tear or lack of maintenance, it’s unlikely that your homeowner’s insurance will cover it. It’s best to check your specific policy or speak with your insurance agent for details.
Replacing your gutters is important when they are no longer effectively channeling water away from your home, which can lead to water damage on your roof, siding, foundation, and landscaping. Old, leaky, or improperly functioning gutters can also contribute to mold and mildew growth and can even become a haven for pests.
The right gutters for your home depend on your climate, the style of your home, and your budget. Aluminum gutters are popular due to their durability and affordability, while vinyl gutters are inexpensive and easy to install. If you’re looking for a more durable and long-lasting option, you might consider steel or copper. It’s also important to consider the size and shape of the gutters, as well as whether you prefer seamless gutters, which can reduce leaks. Consulting with a professional installer can help determine the best option for your specific needs and ensure that they are installed correctly.
Pier and beam foundations, while sturdy, can present unique repair challenges. In this section, we delve into the most frequently asked questions surrounding pier and beam repair. Homeowners often seek to understand the signs that indicate a need for repair, the methods and techniques used in the repair process, and the costs involved. Additionally, we’ll discuss the underlying causes of pier and beam damage, how to prevent future issues, and the importance of professional assessments. From the initial signs of trouble to the completion of repairs, this guide is designed to navigate you through the essential considerations, ensuring your pier and beam foundation remains stable and secure for years to come.
The spacing of piers in a pier and beam foundation typically ranges from 6 to 8 feet apart. The exact distance can vary based on the construction design, the weight of the structure, the load-bearing capacity of the soil, and the size of the beams used. It’s important to follow local building codes and potentially consult with a structural engineer to determine the optimal spacing for your specific project.
To protect a pier and beam foundation, it is essential to maintain proper drainage around the structure to prevent water accumulation that can lead to wood rot or shifting soils. Additionally, using treated wood or durable materials for the piers and beams can help prevent termite damage and decay. Regular inspections for signs of damage or moisture can also ensure that any issues are addressed promptly to maintain the foundation’s integrity.
The typical height for a pier and beam foundation is between 18 to 24 inches off the ground. This elevation allows for sufficient crawl space for access to utilities and provides a buffer against minor flooding. However, the height can be adjusted depending on the specific needs of the building, such as the local climate and flood risks.
The cost of pier and beam repair can vary widely depending on the extent of the damage and the required repairs. In Texas, homeowners might pay anywhere from $1,500 to $5,000 or more. Minor repairs, such as shimming to adjust for settling, can be on the lower end, while extensive repairs, including replacing multiple piers or beams, can be more costly.
Concrete piers, if installed correctly and in the right conditions, can last for many decades, with a general expectancy of 75 to 100 years. Their longevity can be influenced by factors such as the quality of the concrete, soil conditions, water exposure, and the presence of reinforcing materials like steel rebar. Regular inspections and maintenance are vital to extend the life of concrete piers.
Crawl spaces, often overlooked, are crucial to the health and stability of your home. This section is curated to answer frequently asked questions about crawl space concerns. We will tackle key topics such as the importance of crawl space maintenance, signs of crawl space issues, and the various methods of repair and waterproofing available. Additionally, we’ll discuss the impact of crawl space conditions on indoor air quality and energy efficiency, as well as the potential costs associated with remediation and maintenance. Whether you’re dealing with moisture problems, pest infestations, or insulation issues, this guide is crafted to provide you with the necessary knowledge to address and prevent crawl space problems, ensuring a safe and healthy environment in your home.
Yes, encapsulation can increase your home’s energy efficiency by creating a barrier that reduces the amount of humidity entering from the crawl space into your home. This means your heating and cooling systems won’t have to work as hard to maintain a comfortable temperature, leading to potential savings on your energy bills. Additionally, it can improve indoor air quality and reduce the chance of costly energy leaks.
A dehumidifier in a crawl space is used to control moisture levels, which is critical for preventing the growth of mold and mildew. By keeping the area dry, it also helps to protect the structural integrity of your home and can deter pests and insects that are attracted to damp environments.
The cost of crawl space encapsulation varies widely, depending on the size of the crawl space, the materials used, and the complexity of the installation. In Texas, homeowners might expect to pay between $5,000 to $15,000 for a complete encapsulation. It’s a considerable investment, but it can protect your home from moisture-related issues and improve energy efficiency.
Problems with a crawl space can range from moisture issues, such as water accumulation and high humidity, which can lead to mold, rot, and structural damage. Infestations of pests like termites and rodents can also occur if the crawl space is not properly sealed. Additionally, inadequate insulation and ventilation can cause energy inefficiencies and poor indoor air quality.
Water should not sit in a crawl space for any length of time. Standing water can lead to mold growth, structural damage, and attract pests. Ideally, any water that enters a crawl space should be removed within 24 to 48 hours to prevent moisture-related problems. If water persists, it’s crucial to address the underlying issues with proper drainage, encapsulation, or sump pump installation to protect the home’s structural integrity.
Steel piers are a robust foundation repair solution, and homeowners often have a range of questions about them. This section aims to address those frequently asked questions regarding steel piers. We’ll delve into what steel piers are, their benefits, and how they compare to other foundation repair methods. We’ll also discuss the installation process, the typical scenarios where steel piers are the most appropriate solution, and the longevity you can expect from them. Whether you’re currently considering steel piers for foundation repair or simply want to learn more about this option, this guide will provide you with detailed and accessible information.
The size of piers in foundation construction is influenced by several factors, including the load they need to support, the type of structure, soil conditions, and local building codes. The weight and design of the building will dictate how much support is needed, while the soil’s load-bearing capacity will determine how the weight is distributed. Engineers calculate these requirements to ensure the piers are of adequate size to provide a stable and durable foundation.
The cost of steel piers can vary greatly depending on the depth they need to be driven to reach stable soil and the overall complexity of the project. On average, the cost for steel piers can range from $1,000 to $3,000 per pier installed. However, prices can go higher for particularly deep or difficult installations, so it’s essential to get a detailed quote from a foundation specialist.
A steel pier foundation may be right for you if you have unstable soil conditions, as steel piers can be driven deep into the ground to reach more stable soil layers. They’re also suitable for heavy structures, where robust support is critical. However, the decision should be based on a professional assessment of your property’s specific needs, environmental conditions, and the type of structure you have.
Steel piers are known for their durability and can often last for the lifetime of a structure, which can be 75 years or more, depending on the environmental conditions and how well they are maintained. Their longevity is one of the primary reasons they are chosen for foundational support.
Steel piers are used because they are extremely strong and can be driven deep into the earth to reach stable soil, providing a secure foundation for structures even in challenging soil conditions. They are also relatively quick to install, cause minimal disturbance to the landscape, and are not as susceptible to shifts in the soil due to moisture changes as other types of piers might be. These advantages make steel piers a reliable choice for ensuring the long-term stability of a foundation.
Concrete is a fundamental material in construction and home maintenance, leading to numerous questions from homeowners. This section addresses those frequently asked questions about concrete, from its various applications in home building to repair and maintenance. We’ll explore the different types of concrete mixes, their respective uses, and the factors that affect their durability and performance. We’ll also delve into best practices for pouring concrete for different projects, how to detect and address concrete damage, and the expected lifespan of concrete structures. Additionally, we’ll provide insights into the costs associated with concrete work, including factors that influence pricing and tips for budgeting your projects. Whether you’re laying a new patio, fixing a driveway, or undertaking a major renovation, this guide will serve as a reliable resource for all your concrete-related inquiries.
Concrete is most likely to crack where stress is concentrated. This often occurs at weak points, such as near corners, edges, and openings for doors or windows. It’s also prone to cracking along the joints where two concrete pours meet. Other common areas include long spans of concrete without sufficient control joints, which are intentional points of weakness that allow concrete to expand and contract.
You should be worried about cracking concrete when you see wide cracks (wider than 1/4 inch), deep cracks that penetrate through the slab, or a series of cracks that form a grid pattern. Also, if the cracks are growing or if one side of the concrete is higher than the other, it could indicate a serious underlying issue, such as significant settlement or structural failure.
All concrete has the potential to crack eventually. The curing process of concrete causes shrinkage and, therefore, some amount of cracking is normal and expected. However, proper design, placement, and maintenance can minimize significant cracking and extend the life of a concrete structure.
Concrete can crack at any temperature when it is subjected to rapid temperature changes. When it comes to cold weather, concrete is at risk of cracking when its temperature falls below about 25°F (-4°C), as water inside the concrete can freeze and expand. In hot conditions, concrete can crack due to thermal expansion or if it loses moisture too quickly during the curing process.
Concrete settles when the soil underneath it shifts or compresses. Poorly compacted fill soil, erosion, changes in moisture content (either drying out or becoming too wet), and the decay of organic materials in the soil can all lead to settlement. Over time, this can cause the concrete slab or structure to sink or crack as the support from the underlying soil becomes uneven.