Porches are a calming spot to relax, the place where you welcome guests, and a big part of your home’s aesthetics. Without a porch, your house may not feel quite like a home.
If you find that your porch has settled or started pulling away from your home, you may be worried about what this could mean. Expensive foundation repairs? Lengthy restoration projects? Messy demolition and replacement?
Over the last 30 years here at A-1 Concrete Leveling, we’ve been helping homeowners get their porches back where they belong with cost-effective and convenient repairs.
In this article, we’ll cover the signs that your porch is in need of repair, how it can be fixed with concrete leveling, and how foundation piering may also be an answer to your porch problems.
Porches mostly settle and pull away due to non-compacted soil and water erosion of the sub-material holding it up. Over time, these factors can cause the following problems that require porch repair:
Gap Between House and Porch
A gap or crack can form between your home’s foundation and your porch. Because porches are generally poured on separate foundations, this independent movement is common.
While common, it’s very important to lift the porch back to its proper position so it does not cause stress on your home’s foundation.
Doors and Windows Are Sticking
If your porch is pulling on your home’s foundation, it could put a strain on door and window frames, causing the doors and windows to stick. It may also prevent them from opening or closing at all. Lifting the settling porch will likely alleviate this foundation strain.
Porch Bricks Are Pulling
If you have a brick porch and the steps leading up to it start to settle, they could pull on the bricks and cause damage. Lifting the porch steps may be able to help save the porch bricks and minimize the need for expensive brick replacement.
Steps Are Pulling Away From Porch
If your porch steps are pulling away from the porch itself, not only does it pose a large trip hazard, but it could also put a strain on the porch over time. Lifting the steps back into their proper place can prevent these types of issues from occurring.
Depending on how much the porch is settling or pulling away from your home, you may need both concrete leveling and foundation piers, or one or the other.
Fix Your Porch With Concrete Leveling
In many cases, porches that have started to settle and pull away from a home can be repaired with concrete leveling alone.
This process works by drilling strategically-placed holes throughout the settled porch, then pumping a dense, strong compound into the affected area. As the settled area fills with the leveling compound, the porch begins to lift back up into place.
This process is generally quick, easy, and costs far less than tearing out the existing porch and replacing it with a new one. It’s also a great way to bring settled porch steps back to their original position.
Adding Piers to a Settling Porch
Sometimes the foundation of a porch has settled too much for concrete leveling, or the porch being lifted is too heavy for concrete leveling to be effective.
If this is the case, foundation piers can be added under the porch foundation to help lift it or prevent it from settling further.
This process involves digging out the soil around the settled area, screwing the pier into the earth until it hits a stable layer of soil to act as a new base, then securing it to the affected porch foundation.
Even when porches are repaired with piers, they will also sometimes need concrete leveling services to get the surface level and to even out settling porch steps.
If you’re faced with a settling porch that’s pulling away from your home’s foundation, you have options for repairing it.
You can use concrete leveling to lift and stabilize the porch, or you can have piers installed to hold up the porch’s foundation.
Depending on the severity of the issue, however, you may need a combination of both piers and concrete leveling to get the job done right.
The best thing to do in this situation is to reach out to an expert that can help guide you through the process and advise you on the best course of action for your porch’s specific characteristics.
A-1 Concrete Leveling has been a trusted resource helping homeowners take back their sunken porches for over 30 years. If you’d like to see what A-1’s services can do for you, click the link below to request a free onsite consultation and estimate.
Want to learn more? Check out some of these topics from our online resource library to get the answers to your questions about all things concrete:
- How Long Does Concrete Leveling Take?
- Is It Cheaper to Level Concrete or Replace It?
- Sealing the Gap Where Concrete Meets a House