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A Guide to Bowed Basement Walls and How to Prevent Them

by Cincinnati Basement Waterproofing & Drainage

Since a home is a significant investment for many people, any damage to the property is a serious issue, but one of the most concerning problems occurs with the foundation. The foundation is the skeleton of the home and any damage, such as bowed walls, can cause problems to the rest of the building. That’s why foundation contractors recommend understanding what causes bowed basement walls and how to protect against it.

How Bowed Basement Walls Happen

Sometimes this issue arises simply because the foundation contractor didn’t do the job correctly. Something like poor construction or soil fatigue adds unnecessary pressure to the walls and causes them to become deformed. However, even with proper construction, foundation repairs can be needed because of moisture flooding the soil around the foundation and pressing against the walls.

How to Prevent Bowed Basement Walls

The key to avoiding basement wall repairs is to keep the extra stress off of the foundation. This involves making sure the gutters are draining far enough away from the home, removing any trees growing closer than ten feet from the building, and not adding concrete or brick patios too close to the foundation. Foundation contractors also recommend reinforcing the basement walls with carbon fiber strips for extra protection.

What to Do If Your Basement Walls Are Bowed

Luckily, if bowed walls do occur, there are a few restoration options a foundation contractor can implement. 

1. Reinforce the bowing wall from the inside. This is done by installing either a steel I-beam or carbon fiber sheet to the foundation to hold the wall in place. 


2. Straighten the bowed wall from the outside using wall anchors. An anchor is placed into the ground outside and attaches to two steel plates on either side of the wall, which straightens it out and holds it in place. 

3. For the most extreme cases where concrete repairs aren’t possible, a complete rebuild of the block wall foundation is needed.

 

Call Gil at Cincinnati Basement Waterproofing & Drainage and receive a bowed wall basement inspection free inspection  (513) 898-9723.

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