A crack in outside brick or brick wall is an early sign of a foundation problem. Have your cracks and the foundation looked at by a foundation repair specialist.
When a concrete slab bends or curves downward along a brick wall, that brick wall will eventually break.
When a break or crack follows the mortar line, the damage from foundation failure is easily repaired with mortar touch up. When stress causes the brick to fracture, bricks must be replaced. Crack in outside brick replacement may cost $100-$200 per linear foot.
Addendum: recently a reader who repairs foundations wrote in that most cracks can be closed with foundation underpinning. In a lot of cases, this is true. But to raise customer expectations when it is not a sure thing is disingenuous.
At Granite Foundation Repair, we advise our customers that cracks may close. To say otherwise, to say that they will, is promising the moon in order to close the sale. We have seen brick cracks close almost completely on one side of a house, while cracks barely close up on another side of the same house. This is why we always recommend that foundation underpinning be performed early. When a customer postpones foundation repair, it is not always possible to put Humpty Dumpty back together again.
So if you think that you have a crack in outside brick walls or other foundation issues, you can minimize your foundation repair cost by nipping the problem in the bud. Cracks in mortar can be easily repaired/touched up. And as we said earlier, cracks in brick are quite costly.
Will the Cracks in my Brick Wall Close after Foundation Repair?
Brick wall after foundation repair – What can you expect?
Most of the time, cracks in a brick wall after foundation repair will settle and close. Foundation repair does not guarantee that your cracks in the bricks will close, but the chances are good.
Consider a crack that is wider at the top than at the bottom that has occurred about 10 feet from the end of a sagging wall. As the slab and wall are lifted, the crack will probably close.
If the crack width is relatively uniform from top to bottom, it is seldom practical to close the crack by lifting a slab. Lifting a slab may close the top of the crack, but the bottom will probably remain open. As the foundation has undulated up and down with changing moisture and expansiveness of the soil, the brick wall has literally walked along slab.
In the example above, the crack will probably close when the sagging foundation on the right is lifted. Crack is wider at top than at bottom. Photo courtesy of Granite Foundation Repair.
Closing cracks in your wall, interior or exterior, is a benefit of foundation repair. Cracks in your bricks almost always mean you have some sort of foundation problem. To understand what type of foundation problem you have, it is best to schedule a foundation inspection to pinpoint what issue you have and what it will take to fix it.
Cracks in your brick should at a minimum become smaller after foundation repair. Again, many times they will close completely, but not always.
Why is wooden trim separating at the top corner of my brick wall?
Wood trim separating at the top of your brick could be a sign of a foundation problem.
Here is a photo of trim separation. This problem was not caused by poor carpentry.
Corner trim separation is a tell-tale sign of a foundation problem.
As the concrete slab drops on an outside corner, the brick veneer walls in that area remain somewhat perpendicular to the slab, while the trim remains affixed to the roof system. The result is that the brick veneer pushes outward on the trim.
One trick for hiding the foundation problem is to caulk and paint the trim. A thick caulk joint at what should have been a perfectly aligned carpentry corner is a dead giveaway of a foundation problem.
For more information on foundation repair or to schedule a foundation inspection, please contact Granite Foundation Repair today.