The walls of most residential structures are made from an interior and exterior wall with a cavity sitting between them. Cavities provide thermal insulation and stop too much heat travelling inside your home.
Inside the cavity, wall ties hold the interior and exterior walls together, keeping them stable and upright. But if any of the walls inside or outside your home lean, bend, bow or bulge, the wall ties within the cavities may have failed.
There are many reasons why wall ties fail, but here are our top 3.
Wall tie failure reason no. 1: Subsidence
Subsidence is the downward shifting of the ground underneath your home. If someone were to tell you your home was suffering from subsidence, they’d mean your home was sinking.
Subsidence can be caused by oversaturation of the ground on which your home sits, shrinking of the reactive clay under your home due to hot weather, vibrations and even poor workmanship.
Uneven sinking of your home’s structure can lead to unevenness of the foundations directly beneath your interior and exterior walls. If your exterior or interior walls shift downward a little more than the other, the shifting can cause wall ties to snap, tear and disconnect completely.
Wall tie failure reason no. 2: Corrosion
Over years or even decades, moisture can build up between your interior and exterior walls. Especially if your home is situated near the seaside, in a tropical areas or experiences immense amounts of wet weather.
Wall ties are often made of steel and tend to rust due to excess moisture or salty sea air. The brickwork itself can also soak up a lot of moisture, causing wall ties that sit in the brick and across the cavity to corrode and rust.
Wall tie failure reason no. 3: Expansion
A knock-on effect of corrosion is expansion. As excess moisture builds up in the cavity between an interior and exterior wall, wall ties corrode. But left untreated, the corroded wall ties expand to take on a greater volume than the original wall tie. These wall ties distort or crack the walls in which they’re placed.
Due to absorption of moisture, brickwork can expand too. This expansion places uneven pressure on your structure and may result in a leaning, bowing, bending or bulging wall.
Have your wall ties failed? Need help fixing them?
Any wall that doesn’t stand upright is one that needs immediate attention and repair.
If your walls lean, bow, bulge or bend, it’s likely the cavity wall ties have failed. The walls may have become structurally unsound, and collapse is a possibility.
If you’d like your walls and wall ties checked and fixed, give us a call on 1300 854 115 or book a FREE inspection today.