2.The soil beneath the foundation absorbs too much water and swells
Your foundation can also develop problems if the soil underneath it contains too much water. As we’ve noted above, when the soil gets saturated with water, it swells and expands. This pushes upward on the foundation and can cause cracks in walls, floors, ceilings, etc. Your floors might even begin to slope because of this upward movement.
Too much moisture in one area can compact or erode loose, granular soils (or cause them to settle), which leads to uneven support under the foundation. In an area with expansive soil, too much moisture will – as we explained above – cause the soil to expand.
Too much moisture can also cause soil erosion—more on this below.
So, how does this happen? Where does all this water come from?
It comes from a variety of sources, including plumbing leaks, broken sewer lines, heavy rainfall, melting snow, or floods.
Surface water should always flow away from the foundation. Gutters and downspouts should be kept free of debris so that water doesn’t overflow near the foundation. French drains can also be installed if your property has an issue with water pooling by the foundation (more on this later).