Doors that do not open or shut like they once did
Doors that no longer open/close smoothly and evenly with the door jam can be caused by something as simple as loose hinges, or something a little harder to detect: a problem in the foundation. So, be sure to check the hinges and hinge screws first – maybe it’s a very quick fix!
If the door is properly connected to the door jam, and there hasn’t been a change to the floor, then it’s time to check for other signs of foundation problems, and not just assume changes in humidity are the cause of the door malfunction. But remember, if no other signs exist, this one – doors that no longer open/close correctly, especially those that let in light when closed – is significant enough to call an expert for a full inspection – better to solve the problem before it gets worse.
Are you noticing doors that aren’t aligned properly?
Other common symptoms to check for:
- Windows that also do not open/close properly
- Cracks in exterior brick walls (stair step shaped cracks in the mortar joints, specifically)
- Cracks in the basement floor
- Sloping floors
Keep in mind that there are other symptoms of foundation problems not included in the short list above.
Before checking the house, it might be a good idea to learn about some common signs of water coming into your basement or crawlspace – foundation problems can be caused by waterproofing problems, and vice versa. Here are a few of the more common signs of water coming into your basement or crawlspace:
- Is there water in the area where the basement wall and floor meet – the area called the cove?
- Is there standing water on the basement floor, or is the cement damp?
- Is the wall discolored anywhere from a few inches to a few feet high?
If the answer to any of these is yes, calling a professional who can solve waterproofing and foundation repair problems is a good idea – neither of these go away on their own, but they both do get worse over time.