Sticking Windows and Doors

When windows stick, especially in an older home, you might simply chalk it up to over-painting or simply the window system’s deterioration over time. When doors stick, you might think it’s just a combination of heat and humidity. But in both cases, the problem may actually be a floor or two below you.

That’s because for your windows and doors to operate properly, they require the framing they were installed in to remain straight and square. But when a home’s foundation fails, the entire house is affected. Walls and floors shift slightly — sometimes undetectable to the human eye — but enough that the windows and doors that sit in them no longer open and close freely. So, if that window just won’t open smoothly, or that door sticks when you try to close it, it may be time to call in an expert to have a look at your home’s foundation.

interior wall crack

Any opening made in a wall represents a weak point. This is especially true for load-bearing exterior walls. That's why foundation settlement will often cause cracks around window and door openings, as shown above.

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Diagnosing and Fixing the Problem

NSquare offers a variety of solutions to permanently repair cracked, sinking foundations to prevent sticking windows and doors, including:

Our project consultants are trained to expertly diagnose foundation problems. They use highly specialized equipment that allows them to develop a solution tailored to your home’s unique needs. By the time the inspection is over, you’ll know exactly what caused the problem, exactly what it will take to fix it permanently and exactly how much it will cost to do so.

Once a solution has been customized for your home, we pick a date for the job. At that time, a highly trained crew of technicians will install the solution, leaving your home fixed and protected for future generations — restoring its value, improving your family’s quality of life and giving you lasting peace of mind.

interior wall crack

Issue: Settling Foundations

Because of varying soil characteristics, foundation settlement is never uniform. Uneven settlement causes sections of a foundation or slab to crack and shift, while other sections remain in their original positions.

The drywall is not  flexible, so it’s more likely to crack -- especially at the corners of window and doors. When a house has a brick or stone exterior, a settled foundation is likely to have cracks in these upper masonry surfaces due to a lack of flexibility.

installing piers to fix sticking windows and doors

Solution: Stabalized Foundation

At NSquare, Inc., we address foundation settlement issues by installing foundation piers at key locations. The piers extend to stable, load-bearing soil, attached to the foundation with steel brackets. This repair work prevents further settling -- and can even allow the foundation to be jacked back to its original position.

Once the foundation is raised back up, cracks in the wall will close. Doors, locks, and windows may return to functionality, and further settlement damage will halt.

We offer two different types of foundation piers to address foundation settlement: push piers and helical piers. With either installation, there's a 25-year manufacturer's warranty, as well as our own performance warranty.

sagging crawl space

Issue: Sinking Crawl Space 

Crawl spaces are often poorly designed, with too few support columns, rotting floor joists and girders, and weak supporting soils causing the supports to sink.

As the crawl space structure sinks, the floor that it supports will sink as well, creating uneven surfaces underfoot. And as the floor sinks, it will pull the interior walls that are attached to it downwards.

As the walls sink, they pull apart, leaving cracks in your interior walls. And as the home warps, doors inside the home will jam and become difficult to open or shut.

sagging crawl space repair in florida

Solution: Stabalization with Crawl Space Support Jacks

We repair crawl space structural issues with crawl space support jacks. We begin by excavating a hole for each support and creating a base of engineered fill. A cast aluminum base is installed on top of the fill, and the support jack is mounted on top.

Once installed, our crawl space supports will stop your floor from sinking and sagging. These adjustable jacks can also be modified to attempt to lift your floors and walls back to a level position.

Crawl space jack systems install quickly -- with an installation usually being completed in about a day. They provide a superior solution to other repairs, such as concrete columns, shimming and light-duty jack posts.

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