Subsidence damage- repairing wall cracks and more

Wall crack? It is probably subsidence! Subsidence repair is a common service we perform. Subsidence is typical in Edinburgh homes and buildings due to our weather, soil or leaks. Subsidence left unrepaired can cause you problems down the road so it is a good idea to fix your subsidence issues. Subsidence, commonly seen as wall cracks, can cause subtle damage that looks minor, but underneath structural damage lurks. Most Edinburgh homeowners have become used to subsidence damage, but sadly there is a myth that wall cracks can be repaired but subsidence can not be fixed.

In this post, I would like to share some of the things I have noticed over 25 years of dealing with subsidence damage in Edinburgh homes. For wall crack repairs see our Invisible repairs service here...

What causes subsidence?

Subsidence can be caused by numerous issues. Excessive rain followed by long periods of dry tends to contract and expand soil, causing an increase in the threat of subsidence. Leaky drains or pipes can also contribute to the problem. 

How to notice any subsidence in your home

Wall cracks (outside or inside) are the most common sign of subsidence. If your wall crack is at least a width of 3mm (0.1 inches) and thicker, you probably have subsidence.

One of the signs of subsidence is a sticking or jammed door or window. At Paintworks and Plastering, we have also noticed subsidence appearing in Edinburgh as doors and windows jammed or sticking. 

  • Doors and windows jam and stick
  • Cornices ripple on the edges
  • Wallpaper ripples/ crinkles at the edges
  • Diagonal cracks appearing wider at the top of the wall
  • Bay windows that start to shift outwards

We can help you determine if you have a subsidence problem. Note: For subsidence impacting your entire home, we will need a Chartered Surveyor to properly assess the extent of the damage. 

Wall cracks are easier to spot, so many homeowners get used to the idea of sticking windows or jamming doors, as well as rippling wallpaper. Much of subsidence damage gets passed off as "normal" property aging. Repairing subsidence is possible and should rectify issues such as sticking windows. It is important to spot the warning signs of subsidence damage and nip it in the bud.

As stated above, if whole-house subsidence is suspected, don't panic, there is a lot that can be done-- but first, you need an assessment. Next comes restoration, renovation, and protecting against future subsidence. 

Subsidence damage and wall crack repair

Around Edinburgh, we see a lot of wall cracks, sticking windows and doors that 'just started to jam'. We handle subsidence damage on a case-by-case basis. The first step is to look for signs of structural damage. Wall cracks can easily be addressed with a wall crack repair service. This involves plastering and/or invisible repairs. Repairs to outbuildings or from tree root damage can be undertaken as well as repairs to exterior/interior wall cracks. 

For wall crack repairs see our Invisible repairs service here...

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Plastering Services Edinburgh | Ceiling repair | Wall repair | Edinburgh period property Restoration & Renovation