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We may enjoy hot weather, but older buildings aren't so keen

Fri 12 August 2022

Property professionals, Andrew Granger & Co. are happy to offer their advice if you spot a crack in your property this summer.

Often, hot dry summers can be the final straw when tensions or eccentric loads in older buildings get too much – resulting in cracks appearing.


A sunny wall above a usually damp ground area, a south facing wall next to an east facing plant covered wall, a long run of brick work without an expansion joint, - are just a few examples of places where excessive heat can cause differential thermal movement sufficient to crack a building.


As the ground dries out, clay becomes less cohesive and less able to consistently support a building above it. As the ground shrinks a building will move to find a new equilibrium.


If a crack appears in your building this summer don’t panic. Often, they will recover as autumn arrives. Cracks don’t usually close entirely and are generally nothing to worry about – a little remedial repair or redecorate will suffice. It’s best to monitor cracks, get to know your property, and take photos of cracks/movement to keep a record. If you’re worried, seek the help of a suitable qualified surveyor and any serious cracking should be notified to your house insurance company.


The good news is most houses will have cracks in their walls at some point – it’s natural and normally not of concern. And anything more serious can be rectified if caught early, and possibly covered by your home insurance.