Read below to learn more about the types of foundational and structural repairs with which we possess proven, professional experience.


Read below to learn more about specific types of foundational and structural home repairs, as well as warning signs and original causes.

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Warning Signs

Foundational and structural damage can lead to major home safety issues if left unresolved. However, homeowners who monitor developing problems and treat them early can save themselves stress and expense. Upstate Structural Repair can help by professionally performing both preventative maintenance and correction of serious damage as economically as possible.

Clear warning signs of present or developing foundational and structural damage usually appear in the crawl space, in the home’s interior, or on the home’s exterior brick walls.

Crawl Space Warning Signs:

  • Cracked, decaying, dark, or abnormal-looking floor joists (horizontal beams that support floors)
  • Floor joists separating from piers (vertical reinforcements that support floors)
  • Leaning piers
  • Absence of vapor barrier
  • Musty/moldy odor or the visible presence of mold
  • Presence of camel crickets
  • Drooping insulation
  • Standing water appearing around the water heater

Interior Warning Signs:

  • Cracks in walls, especially over door frames
  • Doors struggling to close properly
  • Unlevel, sloping, bouncing, buckling, or soft floors
  • Cabinets or trim separating from the ceiling or floor
  • Visible gaps appearing between hardwood floor planks
  • Watermarks appearing on the ceiling, on walls, around baseboards, or around exhaust vents
  • Standing water appearing inside cabinets or around the washer
  • Items stored in the attic becoming wet
  • Musty/moldy odor or the visible presence of mold
  • High levels of humidity inside

Exterior Warning Signs:

  • Cracks in exterior brick wall (foundation wall)
  • Bulging, buckling, or slanting exterior brick wall (foundation wall)

Leading Causes of Foundational and Structural Damage:

  • Unstable ground: Occurs when either the soil beneath the foundation erodes or shifts over time, or when water settles in the soil beneath the foundation and causes the supporting joists and piers to sink
  • Improper framing: Occurs when builders use undersized support beams or misalign walls
  • Excessive weight: Occurs when people unwittingly add more weight, through the purchase of a large kitchen island, safe, water bed, etc., to their home’s interior than their foundation was originally built to support
  • Dry rot/wood decay/brown rot: Begins to occur when wood moisture levels reach an excess of 25 percent or more, which can release fungi that attacks hemicellulose and cellulose lumber fibers and causes support beams to become brittle; this type of rot may begin to take place without wood having come into contact with water
  • Wet rot: Very similar to dry rot, except that it requires moisture levels in excess of 50 percent; this type of rot may begin to take place without wood having come into contact with water
  • Water damage: Mainly caused by leaks, either from the roof, siding, or plumbing system; if left unresolved, can lead to very costly damage
  • Termite damage: Wooden beams infiltrated by termites may dissolve and lead to more severe problems
  • Serious water damage usually originates in the crawl space and can become costly if unmonitored and left unresolved. Check the crawl space regularly for standing water.

Some Preventative Measures:

Dry rot/wet rot:

  • If the dirt in your crawl space appears dry, lay down a sheet of plastic, and return a week later. After removing the plastic, re-examine the dirt for moisture. If the dirt is moist, dry rot may be beginning to take place. If the dirt is wet or was already wet before testing it with plastic, wet rot may be beginning to take place. In either situation, you should schedule an inspection in order to assess the progression of potential damage.
  • Ensure that the perimeter of your home has adequate drainage that is able to draw water away from your foundation.
  • Check for leaks in your plumbing system as well as in your HVAC drain pan.
  • Ensure that insulation is properly sealed around HVAC ducts in order to keep them from sweating during the summer months.
  • Check for a proper vapor barrier that seals the entire crawlspace.

Common Structural Repairs

  • The most common home structural repair is that of adding additional support to areas whose support is insufficient.
  • More significant repairs involve replacing the existing damaged (or eaten) lumber with new lumber. This type of repair can range from a small section, even just a single board, all the way to every board under the house. 

Common Foundation Repairs: 

  • We use Magnum Piering’s push pier system and helicals to stabilize (and when possible, raise) home foundations, including both those of foundation walls and slab homes.
  • The system provides homes with deep foundations, meaning the foundation is no longer supported by the dirt it sits on, but is resting on a more solid substrate that is potentially 30+ ft. underground.
  • Large steel bracks are mounted to the footer (the bottom) of the foundation, which allows steel pipes to be driven into the ground with hydraulic jacks. The steel pipes go deep into the ground until they rest on something solid enough to support the house. Once things are deep enough, we can attempt to raise the foundation, which locks the system in place.
  • All of Magnum’s steel products are made, assembled, and designed in the USA, and meet the highest standard of engineering and certifications (ICC-ES AC358).
  • Additional repairs to concrete slabs can be made using Fortress carbon fiber stitching to lock cracks together.