Something that may worry many homeowners is the threat of structural repairs. These repairs are often the most expensive to fix. They can be extremely dangerous if left untouched. When assessing the damage that has already been done, it is important to find the root of the problem. This will ensure the issue does not arise again. On top of that, it is necessary to contact a structural repairs expert who can find a solution to the damages. When it comes to structural damage, you should never attempt DIY.
We have collated two of the most common problems, along with their causes and the solution that structural repairs specialists may suggest.
Cracked walls are one of the most common types of problems. The cracks are most often vertical, but sometimes horizontal. The causes and solutions of each are very different.
- The cause of vertical cracks in walls is usually just because of the house settling or moving very slightly over a long period of time. Vertical cracks are not to be worried about.
- Horizontal cracks are more of a problem. They can be caused by serious issues such as a corroded cavity wall tie, movement in your foundations or water entering the fabric of the building.
- Vertical cracks can be fixed by using a concrete crack injection. This plugs the hole that has been made and prevents the crack widening or letting anything through.
- Horizontal cracks, however, must go through a process called crack stitching. This is where steel rods are placed across the divide in the wall. They are then chemically bonded to tie the structure back together. The wall can then be returned to its original state and finish.
Another issue which often arises in old houses especially is a cracked lintel. This can be repaired but it is important to identify the problem before starting with structural repairs.
- The cause of cracked lintels is often due to changes being made to an old house. Many old houses are built on the basis that they have strong wooden doorways and window frames which add to the structural integrity of the house’s fabric. When these frames are replaced with common UPVC doors or windows, there is often a loss of some structural strength and the cracks will begin to show.
- The solution to cracked lintels can be a combination. You can install window frames which are more likely to support the wall’s structure. Examples would be those made of wood, metal or specially reinforced plastic. If you would rather, there are other options but many are far more costly.
Overall, it is always best to speak to an expert. A company like Richardson & Starling will be able to advise you on any structural repairs that are needed around your house. Contact them if you would like an evaluation survey.