Inspecting Your Raised Building Foundation
First off, what he is a raised Building foundation? This
would be a Building foundation that has a crawl space or access door
underneath your wood framed floor. This type of building foundation will
usually be at least 12 to 36 inches above the ground.
Once you have established that you have a raised building foundation, you can start inspecting the exterior concrete stem walls for cracks. Any cracks that are smaller than the width of a penny, aren't normally going to be a major concern.
Any cracks that are larger than a penny, could be a problem. If you have cracks that are larger than a quarter inch wide, you definitely have some problems. If you have cracks that you can stick your finger in, you have some serious structural damage.
The larger the crack, the bigger the problem. Large cracks will be signs that the raised building foundation could be sitting on unstable ground. It's not uncommon to find large cracks near the corner of the building foundation. If you see a large crack near the corner of your building foundation, on each side, there is a good chance that the weight of this building is pushing the concrete foundation in to the soil and you've got a big problem.
You should also look for any other visible damage to your raised building foundation. Are there any holes, missing crawlspace vents, flaking concrete or damage stucco, exposed electrical or plumbing pipes and anything else that might look out of place.
Cracks will be your biggest problems, however, you could find yourself with soil conditions that caused the concrete to start flaking. If you can take a screwdriver and scrape at least a quarter of an inch of the raised building foundation concrete out of the stem wall, you could have a serious structural concrete problem.
These problems are usually caused from the soil surrounding your property. If you have these problems, there's a good chance that your neighbors will have them also.
I would suggest, that if you have any of the major problems with your concrete foundation, to hire a professional who is familiar with these home repairs. If they don't have enough experience, try to find someone who does, or you could find yourself fixing the foundation today, only to repair it again in the near future.