Can Leaking Water Cause a House to Sink

Yes, leaking water can cause a house to sink. When water is constantly leaking, it can cause damage to a property’s foundation by eroding the soil that keeps it together.

As time passes, the erosion will cause the house to sink, leading to serious structural risks that will require professional Adelaide structural restoration services.

For this blog, we’ll expand more on how water leaks affect foundations and what you can do to stop them.

What Happens When Water Leaks Near House Foundations?

Water leaks near house foundations will often lead to significant structural damage over time. The constant moisture can weaken the foundation, causing it to crack or shift. This is particularly concerning when considering subsidence, where the ground beneath the structure sinks due to soil erosion.

Such water-induced erosion can destabilise the foundation, potentially leading to uneven settling of the building and extensive repair costs like underpinning. Moreover, the damp environment fosters mould growth, posing health risks.

Want to learn what is subsidence? Find out by reading our post today.

What Long-Term Damage Can Water Leaks Cause to Foundations?

The following are the types of long-term damage water leaks can cause to foundations:

  • Structural weakness and cracking: Persistent water leaks can severely compromise the structural integrity of a building. Over time, the constant exposure to water weakens the materials used in different house footings and the foundation.
  • Mould and fungal growth: Water leakage in and around the foundation creates an ideal mould and fungal growth environment. These organisms thrive in damp, poorly ventilated spaces, and their presence can lead to a host of problems.
  • Soil erosion and subsidence: Water leaks can have a detrimental impact on the soil surrounding the foundation. Continuous water exposure can lead to soil erosion, where the soil supporting the foundation is washed away or weakened.
Leaking Water Cause a House to Sink

Is House Sinking the Same as Subsidence?

Yes, house sinking is the same as subsidence. Subsidence results from the foundation’s downward movement caused by changes in the soil.

How Can I Prevent Foundation Damage from Water Leaks?

You can prevent foundation damage from water leaks through a thorough plumbing leak inspection, proper drainage maintenance, and sump pump installation.

Plumbing Leak Inspection

Regularly inspecting your home’s plumbing system is crucial in preventing foundation damage from water leaks. This involves checking all visible pipes, fittings, and appliances for signs of leaks or moisture.

Even small drips can indicate bigger issues. Hiring a professional plumber for a thorough inspection is advisable, especially for hard-to-reach areas. They can detect hidden leaks within walls or under the foundation, which, if left unchecked, can cause significant damage over time.

Proper Drainage Maintenance

Maintaining proper drainage around your property is essential in preventing water accumulation near the foundation. Ensure gutters and downspouts are clear of debris and functioning properly, directing water away from the foundation.

The landscape should be graded to facilitate water runoff away from the house. Regularly inspect and clean drains to prevent blockages that can cause water to pool.

Sump Pump Installation

In areas prone to high groundwater levels or heavy rainfall, installing a sump pump can effectively prevent foundation damage. A sump pump removes water that has accumulated in a sump basin, typically located in the basement or lowest part of the house.

Choosing the right size and capacity for your property and regularly maintaining the pump to ensure it functions effectively when needed is essential.

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