The Effect Of Snow On Your Foundation
As we know water appears on earth in three forms, liquid, gas, and solid. Otherwise known as liquid water, water vapor, and snow/ice. In the northeast, we experience all three of these water forms many times throughout the year. In New England we see rain fairly often, we'll also see steam after a summer rain shower, or snow/ice for 3-4 months of the year.
Can Snow be Harmful to Your Homes Foundation?
Normally when a snowstorm hits New England we think oh, we'll have to shovel/plow the driveway after the storm is over. When in reality we should probably be thinking about removing snow from against the foundation of our home. For the same reason we install gutters on our home, we should be preventing snow/water from resting around the perimeter of our house. Doing this is one of the best things you can do to help prevent foundation damage.
When the snow melts, the water has to find somewhere to go. If snow builds up around your house, as the snow melts the water is going to find the path of least resistance. If the water enters an area between a rock and hard place it will tend to build up and pool. Everyone can probably relate to trying to lug a bucket of water somewhere and how heavy they were. Imagine the weight of this water resting against your foundation. To put it in perspective, one of those 5-gallon jugs that sit on top of the bubbler in the office weighs around 42 pounds when full. 5 gallons isn't a lot of water out in nature, imagine all of the snow around the perimeter of your home pushing against your foundation. That is a lot of weight. If you have a small crack in your foundation, water can find that crack and slowly start to increase its size of it until water is just pouring into your home.
Another thing water can do to ruin your foundation is get bigger or smaller depending on the temperature. This is called the freeze-and-thaw effect. When water freezes water will expand with amazing strength and when it thaws it returns to its original size. If this occurs while water was in a crack in your foundation wall it could start removing chunks of concrete, thus weakening your foundation.
Foundation Repair Services in NH/MA
If you're worried about foundation damage caused by snow or anything else, you can your local foundation and waterproofing repair company at Erickson Foundation Solutions.