Q&A / 

Basement Slab Cracking

Basement Slab Cracking

Valerie and her husband are building a new home in Grand Rapids, MI. She went to the site and discovered cracking in the basement slab. Here's her report:

"We are in the process of having our home built, using a local builder.

The basement has a hairline crack on the floor of the basement. We understand that small cracks are normal due to settling.

We asked that the builder fill in the crack for us, however, they will not.  They tell us that "there is nothing to be concerned about."

Should we be concerned?  Can this cause future problems?"

Here's my answer for Valerie:

Valerie, concrete is supposed to crack. Year ago I wrote a column about basement slab cracks that you should read. It has additional information you need to know about.

If your builder has clean washed gravel under the slab and the soil under the house is firm and strong, then you'll not have any issues. Often people call these cracks settling cracks, but their not. They're shrinkage cracks.

The good news is once the concrete has shrunk, you need to read that column above!, then you can repair the crack and make the floor look like new.

This shrinkage can take up to eighteen months, so I'd not do anything about it now. If you pay attention, you'll also notice that gaps will start to form where the basement slab contacts the foundation walls. You can fill those cracks at the same time if you want.

You can use regular gray sanded floor tile grout or you can go with a more expensive, but stronger concrete epoxy. The epoxy is easy to apply as you just need a regular caulk gun.

Watch the video below I made about this!


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