It is pretty easy to spot when you have bowed walls in your foundation. The most common indications of bowed walls are stair-step crack and water leaks. A stair-step crack happens when cracks develop on the seams or joins between concrete blocks in basement walls creating a “stair-step crack.” These cracks begin and bowed walls frequently follow after. Often these basement wall issues begin slow and worsen over time if left alone. It is vital to the integrity of your home to fix bowed walls before the problem gets worse and the fix more costly.
There are three main methods for effectively fixing bowed walls. The extent of the damage to your foundation’s walls will help to determine the best repair method. It is important to note that these repair methods serve the purpose of securing and stabilizing the wall to avoid further damage – which means that repairing bowed walls does not always mean it goes back to its original position.
Below we outline the three widely used methods for repairing bowed basement walls:
The simplest way of reinforcing bowed walls is to use carbon fiber reinforcements. This is a good choice when the damage is minimal with less than two inches of bowing. When cracks appear along your foundation walls, a foundation repair expert will filling the voids with a polyurethane injection. The materials are made with high tensile strength carbon fibers which help keep cracks from progressing.
At American Eagle Professional Services, our carbon fiber reinforcement option has gone through rigorous testing and engineering to arrive at a solution that is installer friendly and firmly secured.
If the walls of your basement is bowing by more than two inches, a good option to consider is using steel wall anchors. Anchors involve a steel shaft connecting to a steel plate attached to the inside of your basement wall and the one buried outside in the ground. Tightening the rod pulls the inside anchor along with the wall towards the outer plate, creating tension and locking it in place. At American Eagle Professional Services, we use the SafeBasements wall anchor system which consists of an anchor and a wall plate working together to pull your basement walls back to where they are supposed to be and provide the needed strength to keep the walls in place. After wall anchors are installed, the lateral strength of your wall should be restored and be able to resist the force of expanding soils moving forward.
Helical tiebacks are rods implemented to support, strengthen, anchor, and straighten bowed basement walls. If you have limited space outside your basement to install anchors, helical tiebacks are the next best option. Helical tiebacks are when you drill a screw-like steel shaft from the inside the basement wall at an angle through the soil on the other side and then attaches to large vertical steel channel fastened to the floor running upward. This process helps to restore the structural ability of the wall without the need to excavate.
If you see cracks and leaks, consider the possibility that you might be having a bowing wall. At American Eagle Professional Service, our experts provides bowed basement wall repair services. Contact us today by filling out our online contact form or by calling (410) 263-9682 to schedule an inspection and appointment.