Trees are known not just merely to add aesthetics to a specific site but also to offer shade from the sun, purify the atmosphere and invite birds to the property.
However, have you wondered if the presence of trees in the vicinity could pose a potential threat to your home? Under specific circumstances, an otherwise desirable tree can pose a significant threat to your home’s foundation.
How the Tree Roots Affect the Soil
Trees have roots that are quite powerful — even small, newly developing roots. Tree roots incessantly transcend in the pursuit of more sources of water and nutrients. The consequence of such movements can be subjective and will vary depending on the kind of soil the tree is planted in.
Soil that consists of loose dirt and rocks, on the contrary, simply tends to transition itself and become displaced, which allows roots to move through at ease. It’s vital to be aware of the type of soil your home sits on because that should tell you the kind and extent of damage that tree roots may have in store for your residence.
Except for garden sheds and treehouses, most buildings designed for human use or habitation have some sort of drainage system that disposes of water and sewage. By its very design, such a system is a powerful attractant to tree roots, particularly in areas that see little annual rainfall.
Some species of trees, such as willows, maples, and aspens, are particularly invasive, as their root systems can extend as far as they need to in search of water. Standard drainage-field pipes are perforated to allow for the transition of wastewater from the building’s interior plumbing to the ground.
Roots can easily grow into these holes and, in adverse cases, can totally block pipes to the point that they sometimes split and are no longer functional. Old clay pipes whose joints have deteriorated over time are also prone to invasion by nearby roots and subsequently, disintegrate under pressure they exert.
While trees are viable additions to the landscape, their roots encompass other plants and destroy elaborate and expensive plantings. Wind and erosion play contributing factors in aiding visibility to the roots of trees that age, projecting them through the soil surface.
Trees that grow closely together are sometimes forced to compete for limited water and nutrients, and gardening is limited in the spaces around and between them due to intertwined roots growing just beneath the soil’s surface.
If put down too thinly over an area near or between trees, asphalt may buckle, bulge, and eventually crack. While tree roots normally do not penetrate solid concrete, walkways and other paved areas may buckle due to the soil movement the roots generate.
How Can Effective Building & Consultancy Help You with Tree Roots?
Prevention is the key to avoiding costly tree root damage. This includes choosing only those types of trees and shrubs that pose the least danger to structural systems of any type.
While there is no guarantee that a tree’s roots won’t someday make their way under a foundation or into a leaching bed, planting trees at least 15 meters away from all structures or systems is a good start. A joint inspection can be undertaken with a qualified Arborist and determine the best way to prevent damage.
As for established plantings causing problems, sometimes the only solution is to cut the tree down and remove as much of the root system as possible before repairing damaged structures.
If you’ve noticed foundation damage and suspect tree roots, soil changes, or concrete settling, contact us on (02) 9613 3353 today! Our team of professionals can help you assess any concerns you have about your foundation.
At Effective Building & Consultancy, we offer reputable and affordable services, so do not hesitate to contact our competent team members today.
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