Crawl Space Waterproofing in Orlando
Many homes in Orlando, FL, are built with crawl spaces, which were originally constructed to provide your home with some level of ventilation. The goal was to prevent moisture buildup in these areas of your home, particularly in areas that are vulnerable to high humidity. However, open crawl spaces can have adverse effects on your home. Some of the problems that open crawl spaces can bring include musty odors, high humidity levels, decreased air quality in your home, mold and mildew, wood rot, pest infestations, and sagging floors.
At Florida Foundation Authority, there are plenty of different solutions that are available to Orlando homeowners to both repair their damaged crawl space and to prevent future problems from happening or recurring. The simplest solutions are crawl space doors or vent covers that work to keep your crawl space closed against the elements once and for all. There are also many waterproofing tools such as dehumidifiers, an interior drainage system, and even the patented AquaStop CrawlSeal™ vapor barrier that lines your entire crawl space to prevent moisture accumulation. Florida Foundation Authority also offers insulation for your crawl space, which can also contribute to better waterproofing this area of your home.
Foundation Repair in Orlando
Your Orlando home’s foundation is a necessary part in upkeeping the structural integrity of your home and ensuring that it remains standing for years to come. Some damage to the foundation, however, can be easy to miss. These damages usually manifest as small warning signs before the major issues take place. Knowing, at least, what to look for will give you a leg up on maintaining your home. Some of these warning signs include wall cracks, drywall nail pops, bowing or buckling walls, misaligned doors and windows, and foundation sinking or settlement.
The solutions that are offered by Florida Foundation Authority are able to address your Orlando home’s foundation needs in a variety of different ways. Some of the tools available are able to support your foundation from below the ground, such as our helical piers, push piers, and slab piers. Additionally, the SettleStop IntelliJack™ Crawl Space Support System can reinforce and help lift sagging crawl space joists, and wall anchors can stabilize and repair bowing crawl space walls. These solutions and more can help you better brace your home against the area’s wet climate and sandy soils.
Concrete Lifting in Orlando
Due to the sandy soils and constantly rainy and humid climate that is dominant in Orlando, FL, homeowners may experience quite a number of concrete damages. Oftentimes, they are not severe enough to warrant a lot of concern, however, it is still in your best interest to know when your concrete needs repairs. If you notice any signs of cracked concrete, uneven concrete slabs, sinking concrete slabs, or even frequent water puddling around your concrete, then you may want to have those areas inspected. You can also gently tap the top of your concrete and listen to any hollow sounds, which is a sign that the soil underneath has settled or been washed away. This is a very common phenomenon in Orlando due to the climate.
Florida Foundation Authority offers the incredibly efficient SettleStop PolyRenewal™ for all your concrete woes, ranging from sinking concrete to cracked concrete slabs. This system uses a strong foam that can lift concrete, repair cracks, and even help weakened soils support heavy concrete slabs once again. It is lightweight, so soil compaction and settlement does not reoccur. Additionally, SettleStop PolyRenewal™ foam is waterproof, so soil erosion does not happen and can improve the stability of remaining soils under your concrete.
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About Drainage, Crawl Spaces & Foundation Repair in Orlando
Central Florida, where Orlando is located, is dominated by an abundance of sandy soils. Sand-based soils have much finer and smaller soil particles compared to other types of soil, making it one of the more ideal soil types since this allows for better water drainage and filtering capabilities. While this is the case, sandy soils do have one pitfall, and that is vulnerability to soil erosion. Soil erosion is a phenomenon that describes when soil particles are washed or eroded away by wind or water. It can cause numerous issues in your home if not addressed for a long period of time, especially in areas that do have a lot of wind and water (whether in the form of rain or humidity).
Orlando, FL, specifically, experiences an annual average of 52 inches of rain. Most of this rain is concentrated during the hot summer months, where the temperature can range from 72 to 92°F. This makes the city extremely humid during this time of the year, which does not combine well with the type of soil that is dominant in this region.
Numerous bouts of rain in large quantities can certainly cause the sandy soil of Orlando to erode away. The more that this happens, the less soil that is present, allowing for more water to invade underground. The likelihood that this water will enter your crawl space, beneath concrete, and interfere with your foundation structure increases significantly—and a high accumulation of water is never good for areas of your home. Cracks and holes may begin to form, followed by leaks or flooding, thus, paving the way for water damages, such as settlement, shrinking, and rot.
Although your crawl space is located under your home, any water or structural damages that are within your crawl space can have a serious influence on the inside of your home. Almost 50% or more of the air that you breathe inside your home originates from the air inside your crawl space, so the quality of your crawl space will be reflected inside your house. Therefore, any odors or particles that are circulating in your crawl space are most likely inside of your home as well. Some of the notable warning signs that your crawl space needs repairs are unpleasant odors, increased humidity, increased allergies or asthmatic reactions, and increased energy bills.
What causes this to happen is known as the stack effect, a phenomenon that describes the movement of air within a home based on relative air pressures. Air typically moves from areas that have high air pressure to areas with low air pressures. This means that air will move from the bottom of your house to the top. You can start to see how the condition of your crawl space air begins to play a critical role in your home’s air quality.
Since Orlando, FL, is characterized by a hot and humid climate, this hot and humid air from the outside is likely to rise into your home. This can increase the inside temperatures, which may result in you reaching for your air conditioning unit more often. Over time, your energy bills can start to add up. The hot and humid climate is not ideal for your crawl space condition as well since it is likely to encourage the growth of mold and mildew. These are just some of the particles that can be within your crawl space that you do not want in your home.
There are three main things that can damage a foundation: soil and climate, hydrostatic pressure, and the clay bowl effect. The climate of Orlando, FL, does not combine very well with the sandy soil that dominates the area. The high volume of water that accumulates throughout the year, especially during the summer months, can wash away a large amount of soil, which can be very problematic for your foundation structures. Foundations can begin to settle with a lack of soil to support it. This can cause a chain reaction of damage such as crack formation and uneven structures.
Hydrostatic pressure refers to the large amount of force that is exerted by a large volume of water. When Florida rain washes away the soil, more water can accumulate underground. This water can exert a large amount of pressure against your foundation walls. Over time, this intense pressure can cause your foundation walls to bow or buckle inwards. Bowed walls can become broken if not promptly addressed, leading to leaks and potential flooding.
Upon construction of your house, builders must dig a hole around the perimeter of your foundation in order to have room to build it in the first place. Once they are done, this area is backfilled with soil. However, this soil is much looser than the dense, undisturbed soil surrounding it. This means that the soil around your foundation is much more likely to absorb rainwater, thus paving the way for structural and water damage.
The SettleStop PolyRenewal™ system utilizes a very innovative foam that is incredibly effective for concrete lifting and stabilization. The foam, made from polyurethane, is very lightweight, so it will not exacerbate soil and concrete settlement, and is also waterproof, so that it can protect the soil underneath concrete slabs against the humid and rainy Orlando summers. The material can also protect chemicals from leaking through into your home, such as weed killer or fertilizers. Furthermore, SettleStop PolyRenewal™ foam cures within 15 to 30 minutes, so you can reap the benefits in less than a day.
What makes the SettleStop PolyRenewal™ so effective, aside from the fact it is lightweight, yet strong, waterproof, and cures quickly, is its ability to expand upon injection. Once the installation experts have drilled a hole into the problem area, the foam is injected and expands within minutes. This allows the foam to lift sunken concrete slabs from below and keep it lifted for years to come. Because this foam expands, it is also able to fill in any voids that exist within the concrete due to soil erosion by the rain. Although the SettleStop PolyRenewal™ expands to large sizes, experts only need to drill a very small hole in order to inject it, so it is not very invasive to your property!
Mudjacking, one of the more traditional methods to resolve concrete lifting and repairs, does not compare to the SettleStop PolyRenewal™ System offered by Florida Foundation Authority. Mudjacking is only a short-term solution that uses a very dense and heavy material made of soil, sand, and cement, also known as a “slurry,” to do this. However, this heavy material can make the problem worse because it adds weight to the soil below. This can result in further soil compaction and settlement, and thus, concrete sinking can occur again in the future.
Drainage systems are a very important part of your home’s defense system, especially since Orlando, FL, averages about 52 inches of rain per year. Therefore, in order for you to make sure your home is waterproofed, you must make your home’s drainage systems a priority. It can be incredibly overwhelming to consider which types to prioritize since your home has numerous types. But Florida Foundation Authority offers a number of drainage systems that are some of the most important.
For crawl space leaks and flooding, there are several drainage options including the AquaStop CrawlDrain™ interior drainage system and a sump pump. The AquaStop CrawlDrain™ is installed in the crawl space floor along the interior perimeter to catch any water that seeps inside the crawl space or through the ground. This water is then directed to drain into a sump pump that is able to pump thousands of gallons of water out of the crawl space.
For outdoor drainage, homeowners may want to consider the Gutter Downspout Extensions. Downspouts can contribute to the high prevalence of soil erosion around your foundation in Orlando, FL, since it can deposit large volumes of water directly into the soil that surrounds your home. Installing an extension can not only minimize soil erosion, but it can curb it entirely by redirecting this water elsewhere. The Gutter Downspout Extensions are commonly installed with the YardWell™ Outlet, an accessory that covers up the end of the downspout extension while also allowing you to clean out any debris carried by the water from your gutters.
Crawl space encapsulation is essentially the process of both insulating and waterproofing your crawl space. Many of the useful waterproofing tools that are offered by Florida Foundation Authority are installed during this process. The reason why both are done is because this decreases the likelihood of moisture accumulating in your crawl space and prevents the Orlando, FL, rainfall from invading and causing damage in your home. It is a very long-term solution that guarantees your crawl space is protected against the elements.
The first step is to remove any excess water that is already within your crawl space. This includes addressing any existing leaks, floods, and drainage problems, as well as installing any necessary drainage systems. The perimeter of your crawl space is then sealed and insulated with the patented AquaStop ExTremeBloc™ rigid foam insulation, which is then covered by the AquaStop CrawlSeal™ vapor barrier for further waterproofing. If you happen to have any open vents or doorways in your crawl space, the experts may also install a crawl space vent cover or door to block anything from the outside from entering.
Once your crawl space has been cleaned, prepped, insulated, and waterproofed in its entirety, there is one last critical step that will complete crawl space encapsulation. Poor air quality can render all these procedures useless, especially if there are allergens and moisture still circulating in the air. This is where the dehumidifier comes into play. The dehumidifier works to remove moisture and allergens in the air and can help prevent mold growth.
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With 75+ years of combined experience, Florida Foundation Authority is Altamonte Sorings leading foundation & concrete repair contractor.
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Florida Foundation Authority
3723 Hogshead Rd, Apopka, FL 32703
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Saturday: 8 am – 2 pm