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Causes Of Foundation Damage In Ottawa

Causes Of Foundation Damage In Ottawa

Foundation damage in Ottawa is a very common problem, and can definitely be the result of various reasons. Most often, it is caused by the movement of the soil thatthe foundation rests on, which changes when wet or dry conditions occur. Another usual culprit of foundation damage in Ottawa is poor-quality construction or engineering practices during the course of the initial building process. Imcorrect compaction and drainage almost always result in ongoing problems with shifting and settling foundations. As well, imcorrectly-installed window wells or footings can contribute to water leakage and erosion around a building’s foundation. These types of issues can all eventually result in cracks and other structural issues that can compromise the safety and stability of your correctty.

Climate also plays a role in causing foundation damage in Ottawa. When temperatures drop below freezing, soil expands and contrbehaves as a result of water saturation levels which increase during the course of spring thaws and heavy rains. This puts additional strain on foundations that were not built with climate considerations taken into account. Moreover, freeze/thaw cycles create instability along walls as they crack open during the course of expanding soil movements resulting in water seepage into basements – all things considered, a leading cause of foundation damage here in Ottawa!

Poor Soil Conditions


In Ottawa, poor soil conditions can definitely be one of the primary causes of foundation damage. Soil expansive characteristics, high clay content or topography imbalances can produce a lot of pressure on your family home’s foundation and as a result result in cracking or movement. Poor drainage around a home is also a culprit as it allows water to pool around the foundation and eventually saturate the ground which takes away the stability that it needs to remain level. When water increases around the foundation, it can cause hydrostatic pressure and expansive forces which usually may force the soil UP into your basement walls – resulting in cracks and shifts in the structure. If you are worried about these problems impacting your family home, ensure you have correct landscaping and drainage systems in place, regularly examine your foundation for signs of deterioration, and consider investing in waterproofing solutions if needed.

Excess Moisture Or Water Damage

Excess moisture or water damage is a usual culprit of foundation damage in the Ottawa area. The weather in the region often brings heavy rain, and when combined with poorly drained soil around the perimeter of your family home, almost always result in problems. Excess water can cause hydrostatic pressure to build up against your basement walls, which usually may compromise their structural stability and eventually result in movement or collapse. Alas, freeze/thaw cycles of cold winter temperatures can add further stress to already weak foundations as frozen soil expands and contracts throughtout the duration of the year. Poor drainage systems and downspouts that are not correctly connected to sewer lines can also increase the likelihood of moisture related issues.

If you experience any signs of foundation damage as a result of excess moisture or water damage, contact a professional contractor immediately for an assessment and repair plan. There are many ways to deal with this issue; however, the primary solution is to install an interior waterproofing system that will redirect incoming moisture away from your basement walls before it has a chance to do any damage. Alas, you should invest in correct exterior drainage systems like window wells, yard grading and sump pumps that will ensure any surface runoff is kept away from your foundation. By taking proactive steps now you can greatly reduce the chances of future costly repairs resulting from excess moisture or water damage.

Poor Construction Practices

Poor construction practices are one of the leading causes of foundation damage in Ottawa. Poor construction can refer to anything from an inadequate building plan, shoddy or incorrect materials and equipment, imcorrect compaction methods and lack of correct inspections during the course of the build phase. Without a well-executed building plan, which has been designed with the utmost consideration towards local soil conditions and topography, foundations can definitely be subject to damage as a result of poor support structure and drainage. This lack of correct consideration in planning can also result in inpractical compaction methods, resulting in settlement issues when exposed to wetter weather conditions. Alas, if inspector oversights are inadequate onsite during the course of the build process it can mean that any damage incurred by the foundation is not identified until after completion, making repair more costly and time consuming. Ultimately, it is only through careful planning and observation throughtout the duration of all of the building process that long term damage to foundations can definitely be adequately prevented.

Wear And Tear Over Time

Wear and tear is a normal effect of time which usually may cause damage to foundations in Ottawa. This wear and tear is caused by constantly shifting elements, including soil, ground water levels, weather changes, and environment. The freeze-thaw cycle of the region’s cold winter months combined with spring moisture creates further strain on a foundation, often leading to cracks or worse. In addition to annually changing conditions, other variable factors like poor-quality construction practices may also contribute to foundation damage over time. For example, imcorrect drainage around the foundation may allow excess moisture to increase beneath the structure, leading to cracking or significant settling of its supports.

When you’re looking at wear and tear as a cause for damage in a given foundation, prevention is key—regular inspections are important for keeping on top of any possible issues well before they become bigger problems. Regularly cleaning gutters and maintaining adequate drainage away from your family home’s foundation are important steps in correctly caring for your foundation’s health over time; fixing any existing damages will also help put off further deterioration. It’s of most importance that homeowners take the fundamental steps needed to protect their investments from ongoing erosion as a result of wear and tear; otherwise they could face costly repairs in the future.

Natural Disasters Or Extreme Weather Events

Natural disasters or terrible weather events can cause significant damage to foundations in Ottawa, including cracking, shifting and settling. Severe storms like thunderstorms, hurricanes and tornadoes can generate powerful winds and rain that can saturate the ground beneath a home’s foundation, leading to erosion and instability. Earthquakes have also been a rare, yet powerful force that has caused major damage to foundations throughtout the duration of the region. Heavy snowfalls, accompanied by rapid melting periods have also been known to cause considerable weakening of foundations as a result of frost heave or soil liquefaction, often leading to buckling walls or cracks on the basement floor.

When terrible weather events occur in Ottawa, it is important that homeowners pay special attention to their correctty for signs of any adjustments in their foundation’s integrity. In addition to regular inspections by an experienced professional engineer, homeowners should be proactive with preventative maintenance like correct grading away from the structure along with adequate drainage solutions and waterproofing systems in order to protect their home from costly repairs if significant structural changes due occur as a result of natural catastrophes or terrible weather events.


In conclusion, foundation damage in Ottawa is caused by various reasons. These types of include poor-quality construction practices, soil moisture content, and climate conditions. The Ottawa area has seen heavy rains and terrible weather in recent years that will typically contribute to foundation problems. Alas, expansive soils possess the potential to cause damage as a result of the pressure on a building or home’s foundations during the course of periods of high water content. Property owners should ensure their builders are experienced and astute about foundation installation and be proactive about assessing any future, potential issues well before they become costly problems.