The roots of the willow are aggressive and strong. Such trees include: Trees are a beautiful accent to any property and it’s important to understand the impact they can have on our foundation. If the roots of neighborโ€™s row of backyard trees next to your fence have invaded your property, causing damage to your hardscape, and/or threatening your homeโ€™s foundation, suit in court for injunctive relief may be effective to force them to remove their offending trees, and to grind down the stumps to kill the rootsโ€ฆ My home is under an attack of the tree roots and my search on, โ€œcan tree roots damage a foundationโ€ did not show the โ€œkiller tomatoesโ€ urgency of the matter. But in some cases, subsidence and structural damage can be linked to tree roots. There are ways to remedy this. Tip. Some trees can draw as much as one hundred ninety gallons of water per day. Even though experts know a fair amount about the trees you have in your yard, itโ€™s still difficult to predict just how vast a treeโ€™s root system will become. Roots can contract and shrink during droughts if the clay soil dehydrates, whereas they can expand by absorbing water during periods of heavy โ€ฆ Keep reading to learn more about how tree roots can damage your homeโ€™s foundationโ€ฆ 803-220-3550 It's HUMP Day!๐Ÿซwhich means Brian's back with another episode of our #FoundationRepair #TipOfTheDay series! Depressions and hollow spots are left in the excavated area. Cutting a tree down is always a last resort. Downspouts should discharge far enough to allow water to drain away from the house. Since tree removal can be dangerous and might cause damage to your property, it’s advisable to have professionals do it. All of these can contribute indirectly to foundation settlement and cracks. Avoid placing thick layers of mulch directly against the foundation, as this may attract pests such as termites. A number of homes in the Ottawa area experienced foundation problems after months of drought in 2012 were followed by a lot of rain. Roots โ€ฆ After long droughts, significant soil shrinkage around and under the house can leave an avenue for water from heavy rains to find its way into cracks that may have developed from uneven foundation settling. Occasionally, roots may find their way through existing cracks and enlarge them. Advice needed for repair/restore after foundation damage. Trees of this type can hurt your foundation by growing under your structure and forcing it upward. MythBuster Monday! Plant the right trees in your yard (those with non-invasive root system). You may wonder, โ€œHow can tree roots cause damage to a structure that holds my entire building in place.โ€ This article will address two ways in which tree roots ultimately harm your foundation and affect the stability of the house. Improper garden design around a foundation can also block water from draining away and can contribute to pooling. Instead, the changes in the condition of the soil are what actually cause most of โ€ฆ Slab-On-Grade Foundation vs. Should you be worried? They help divert roots away from the foundation. Some trees use 15 gallons of water per hour on a hot day, and some can draw as much as 200 gallons of water. Tree roots themselves don’t actually damage a foundation. By continuously monitoring potential hazards, such as tree roots, you can help prevent foundation damage to your home. It also allows rainfall to enter the soil more evenly. Houses with shallow foundations are more prone to damage from drought, as the soil closer to the surface dries quicker than deeper soil. Rather, roots can rob the soil near the foundation of crucial moisture. Foundation damage can occur from subsoil shrinkage during drought in the total absence of roots. A large tree that’s close to a house can add to the problem by drawing additional moisture from the soil. This is because their roots extend straight down into the soil. Even though you canโ€™t see them, tree roots are constantly at work gathering nutrients and expanding. This causes the foundation to detach and shrink leading to its collapse. They can grow to block light, abrade the fabric of a building as they sway in the wind, damage fences by growing through them or cause damp. A leaky plumbing drain can leach water into the soil, giving tree roots a source of moisture. Theyโ€™ve been known to ruin underground water lines and crack poured pavement. Once the gap closes, you can reduce the amount and frequency of watering. For an irrigation drip line to be effective, it needs to be installed several inches beneath the soil’s surface. Can Tree Roots Cause Foundation Damage? Comments (11) ... My Peach Tree is Losing Majority of Its Leaves, How Can I Save It? Most foundation damages are caused by adjacent trees. When builders create a house foundation, a big hole has to be dug. The concept of tree roots growing does not fit the definition of sudden and accidental because roots grow very slowly, so normally damage caused by roots โ€ฆ During droughts, they often get blamed when other factors such as clay soils, poorly compacted backfill, or pre-existing foundation cracks often play a larger role. Trees of any kind can damage a foundation, but some are worse than others. After sustained periods of rainfall, or after a heavy snowmelt, a lot of pressure can be placed against foundation walls, resulting in cracks, which can allow water to enter. Tree roots provide your trees with all of the nutrients they need to survive. To be fair, tree roots themselves are not the direct cause of foundation damage, though many homeowners believe they are. However, not all trees pose a threat to your foundation. The Spring Thaw Is Coming: Is Your Foundation Ready? Plant trees at least ten feet from patios, sidewalks and driveways and consider 20 to 30 feet for trees with spreading water-hungry roots. 2. Research the maximum height for whatever species of tree you’re planting, and multiply that figure by three. 10. Avoid at all costs. This then creates underground voids ultimately leading to stress on the foundation of your home. Clay soils also expand a great deal when wet. Sometimes, tree root damage can mean thousands of dollars in repair costs to buildings, plumbing systems, and pavements. Without proper maintenance, this may require foundation repair. Poplar (Zones 3-8): A tall tree with aggressive roots known for causing sewer and foundational damage; American elm (Zones 3-9): A full tree that has shallow roots that can disrupt your lawn, sidewalk or driveway; Silver maple (Zones 3-9): A tree with gorgeous, shimmery leaves that also has roots that often end up โ€ฆ This damage can be very costly to repair. Consider hiring professional services for this. And you can enjoy your iced tea. There are many different causes of foundation damage. Your neighbour stops by and says, “That big old tree’s roots are gonna damage your foundation. Can Trees Damage Your Foundation? Hi, I need some information if 10 to 15 year old oak trees roots, could damage the foundation of a townhouse. Landscape Damage. Roots have to grow near the base of a foundation to contribute to any significant damage caused by drought. You can use a drip hose to slowly add moisture. A root barrier can be installed to prevent re-growth, although this can be expensive. Tree roots can cause damage to โ€ฆ You might be able to find these roots by digging within a few feet of your foundation. Suit for Injunctive Relief. Weather can also be a factor in how trees affect soil. In order to compensate, builders compact the fill soil to approximate the surrounding soil. They can range from improper drainage all the way down to low-quality soil around your home. Water drainage. Trees often have vast root systems that spread out over a fairly long distance. Trimming/cutting tree roots to prevent them from growing toward the foundation. I asked landscapers and other local professionals, can tree roots damage a foundation? Trees can offer โ€ฆ The ground around the perimeter of a house should slope away to prevent water from pooling around the foundation. Common trees with invasive roots include: Find out about the nature of a tree’s root system before planting it. 9925 Russell Road Cumberland, ON K4B 1R8, /wp-content/uploads/2018/01/acs-logo-light.png, https://www.acsottawa.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/depositphotos_15429103_l-2015-e1521733712301.jpg, Plant slow-growing trees that have less aggressive roots, such as oak or sugar maple, Avoid willow, honey locust, silver maple or elm, unless you have a large yard, Tree roots can grow twice, even three times as wide as tree height, Plant trees far enough away from the house—at least 20 feet (but it really depends on the size and species of the tree), If you’ve noticed cracks in your foundation, or are worried about the backfill surrounding your home, you may wish to consult a, Copyright © 2020 - 2157931 Ontario Inc. O/A Affordable Concrete Services, Home Foundation Types and Their Common Problems. Avoid planting trees that require a lot of water or those with roots that grow horizontally, ex: oak tree roots. Trees aren’t a direct cause of foundation damage. Add water to the area around the trunk’s base if trees on your property seem to be sucking the surrounding soil dry. A certified arborist took a look at it and said that he would like to use an Air Knife to expose the roots near the foundation (a walkout basement) to determine if the roots are causing damage and/or need to be pruned, or whether the tree โ€ฆ You might wanna cut it down before it’s too late.”. Trees can help soak up extra moisture in regions with excessive heavy rainfall. If the backfill around a foundation hasn’t been compacted properly, tree roots may grow down when they meet the looser soil. Tree roots can, however, cause damage to other areas of your home. Soil, especially if the clay content is high, shrinks when it dries. To protect your foundation, keep these things in mind: Trees don’t pose as much of a problem to foundations as many people say. Basement Foundation. They tend to grow pretty quickly – a trait that makes them extremely popular. Their roots extract water from the soil. As a rule of thumb, avoid planting a tree closer than ten feet from a home’s foundation. Tree roots do not typically invade a foundation, though they can contribute to damage. The answer I received as they looked at the trees near my foundation โ€ฆ Root barriers help avoid foundation settlement since they control the growth of roots near the foundation. For properties bigger than one hectare, a city-approved Tree Conservation Report is needed to remove any tree with a diameter of 4 or more inches. Again, there is a process to go through to prove the cause of the damage, and the extent of that damage. Luckily, there are several steps that can be taken in order to prevent tree roots causing extensive damage to a property such as creating a root barrier, removing trees in their entirety and investing in deep, strong foundations like piles that will not be affected by soil moisture changes. Roots rarely cause significant damage to concrete foundations. Overestimate the distance needed for each sapling when planting new trees. Sometimes, tree root damage can mean thousands of dollars in repair costs to buildings, plumbing systems, and pavements. And while tree roots can do damage to a home's foundation, it's probably not for the reason many believe. Lay the hose around the perimeter of the foundation. This leaves room for the foundation to settle unevenly, which can cause cracks. They also can grow into sewer lines, causing pipes to burst or water to back up in your basement. Hardwoods such as oaks and elms are the most concerning trees. This leaves the soil beneath your foundation without moisture leading to its collapse. For invasive trees, experts’ advice planting them 25 to 50 feet of space away. This is a cost-effective way to avoid damage by trees. Understanding the factors involved in tree damage to buildings, including soil type and depth of foundations, will help both tree and โ€ฆ If preventative methods fail, removing the tree would be the only option. They are often found a couple feet down. Roots โ€ฆ This leaves room for the foundation โ€ฆ You’re sitting on your front porch enjoying a refreshing iced tea. โ€ฆ Call Us Now! CONFIRM THE INVOLVEMENT OF TREE ROOTS FIRST. The answer depends. During droughts, if you see a gap between the soil and your foundation, the soil needs moisture. Its shade provides relief from a blazing hot afternoon sun. While it’s important that water drains away from your foundation, it’s equally important to maintain a consistent soil moisture to combat soil shrinkage. Facts: This is a concern weโ€™ve heard many times, and a quick google search revealed that itโ€™s a source of worry and confusion for plenty of tree โ€ฆ Improperly compacted backfill can result in soil settlement and allow water to drain toward the foundation. Don’t panic if your foundation is showing signs of damage. Tree roots do not easily grow to the base of a full basement foundation, and generally, don’t penetrate sound footings. Even the fruit, if not picked, can attract wasps and be unsightly. Avoid planting shrubs or trees near the foundation. Myth: Tree roots will crack my foundation and damage my underground pipes. A foundation will generally only be infiltrated by pine tree roots if it's already weakened or cracked and the tree is too close to the house. These spots need to be backfilled with soil that’s lighter than the native virgin soil. Can My Old Apple Trees Be Revived? They grow quickly because they drain a lot of water from the soil. Tree roots themselves donโ€™t actually damage a foundation. In less common cases, you may need to excavate to the base of the foundation to remove the roots. Soil subsidence and loss of key foundation support then develops. Trees naturally require light to grow. Before any tree is cut down, the presence of tree roots at the base of the foundation should be confirmed. Unfortunately, those roots can occasionally grow too close to your home. It's uncommon for pine tree roots to damage a foundation because pine tree root systems largely grow down instead of expanding outward. Again, the root system is the reason we avoid this tree. Tree roots can potentially grow under the house and more easily draw moisture. But when they’re planted too close to the foundation, they can cause foundation problems. In the meantime, the next time your neighbour tells you to cut down your beautiful tree, you’ll be a bit more informed. 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