Home » 6 Signs Your House Might Be Subsiding

6 Signs Your House Might Be Subsiding

(June 16, 2023)

Subsidence is an incredibly important issue that some properties will experience. It can depend on the age of the house, together with multiple other factors, something we’ll get onto in a moment. But nevertheless, it’s imperative that you spot the signs of subsidence early so as to restore and protect the integrity of your house or commercial property. So what is subsidence, what causes it and how can you tell whether your house is subsiding? Let’s take a look:

 

What is subsidence?

Subsidence is every homeowner’s worst nightmare. Essentially, it’s when the foundations of a building start to shift, so much so that the building’s integrity is put at risk. In extreme cases, it could cause the property to collapse, which is extremely dangerous. Subsidence will eventually cause the foundations of the building to sink, weakening the entire structure. With this in mind, it’s important that signs are spotted early so as to fix the issue, something that Geobear can rectify with innovative underpinning services. 

 

What causes subsidence?

There are multiple different things that can cause subsidence and not all of them are within your control. It can depend on the age of the property or even what the house has been built on. If the foundations sit on old marshland, then subsidence issues can, almost, be expected. However, this isn’t something that most homeowners will be made aware of and it’s beyond your control. Other things that can cause subsidence are as follows:

  • Tree roots
  • Soil type
  • Climate
  • Weather
  • Leaking drains
  • Mining

 

6 signs your house is subsiding

You might not be aware that your house is subsiding, especially if it’s an issue that’s only just started. But there will be a few telltale things to look out for, and that you should continue to look out for. No matter how many of these you spot, you should call in help from the professionals, such as Geobear. From jagged cracks to sitting windows, here are six signs that your house might be subsiding:

 

1. Cracks are appearing in walls & ceilings

Interior and exterior cracks in walls and ceilings are a sure sign of subsidence, especially if you can fit your little finger inside it. It will also be more of a concern if the crack follows the mortar lines in the brickwork. If you find hairline cracks or cracks that appear in completely straight lines, then this is likely due to a plastering issue, or a crack has appeared where plasterboard meets another sheet of plasterboard. The wider and longer a crack is, the more likely it is that there’s a more serious underlying issue, such as subsidence.

 

2. Floors aren’t level

This could entirely depend on the age of the property together with the material that the floor is made of. However, instead of a floor dipping in the middle, such as the case with much older properties, the floor will instead start dipping to one side or the other. If you’re concerned about the integrity of the floor, then you could use a spirit level to see exactly how far out the floor actually is. If it’s noticeable, even without a spirit level, then you should consider hiring Geobear for expert subsidence solutions.

 

3. Doors & windows are sticking or jamming

Sometimes, uneven floors can also lead to door misalignment. This will cause doors to either stick, jam or not close at all. However, this is a common issue with doors, generally, especially as temperatures begin to rise and fall as the weather changes. So if you find that you can longer shut a door, then don’t immediately come to the conclusion that it’s a subsidence issue. 

There will, usually, be other accompanying factors involved, such as uneven flooring and windows that also won’t close or open. Again, uneven floors and ceilings can have a knock-on effect on windows and doors, so they often come hand-in-hand. If you suspect subsidence in your home, then you’ll likely have the aforementioned issue as well.

 

4. Wallpaper creases with no signs of damp

As the foundations of the house begin to shift, you’ll find that your walls, floors and ceilings will become warped or uneven. If you have wallpaper on the walls and/or ceilings, then you may well notice that it’s beginning the crease even though there aren’t any signs of damp or mould. 

Although, much like with doors and windows that won’t open and close, this sign on its own isn’t, usually, a clear indicator that subsidence is occurring. But if you notice this, along with other signs of subsidence, then you should assume that subsidence could, actually, be the problem.

 

5. Your extension is moving away from the rest of the house

If you have an extension built that attaches to the existing house, and if your home is experiencing subsidence, then you’ll likely notice that the extension itself is starting to come away from the original brickwork. It will come away even in a straight line or a zig-zag pattern. Also, the gap will be large enough for you to put your little finger in. You shouldn’t worry if you see small hairline cracks in brick mortar, but it’s recommended that you keep an eye on it, just to see if the crack gets any longer and.or wider.

 

6. The property is noticeably leaning

You’ll notice that your home is noticeably on the lean. All you’ll have to do is stand outside and look at it from across the other side of the street. This will accompany all of the other signs we have discussed, because if the house is leaning, the subsidence issue has likely become far more serious. This isn’t an early sign of subsidence, but it’s a sure sign that things have got much worse. But no matter the extent of the damage, Geobear will be able to help you.

 

 

If you start to notice signs of subsidence, then look to Geobear for innovative subsidence solutions, such as resin injection underpinning. We can come and inspect your property to confirm whether or not subsidence is the issue. If it is, then we’ll provide you with professional advice and guidance on what to do next. We’ll be pleased to offer highly-effective, long-lasting underpinning services, so get in touch with us to arrange an appointment that suits you.

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