By all rights, a basement is the foundation of a home; it merely extends further into the ground than the average block or concrete foundation. If you spot a crack in your basement wall, it can definitely be alarming. The first thing most homeowners think when they see such a problem is that their basement is probably going to leak. However, grabbing a bucket of plaster or other resurfacing material to seal the crack off may not be the best solution. Foundation repair services find many problems after homeowners have done this. Take a look at why you should drop that plaster right where you stand and call a foundation repair service for advice.
A crack is almost always a sign of a bigger problem.
A crack may seem like such a simple thing. These fissures show up in solid-poured walls just the same as walls made out of concrete blocks. But a crack is not always just a crack; there is a reason why the thing showed up in the first place. Most often, the crack is a sign of poor wall support, uneven weight distribution from the frame of the house, or something else. None of these issues are aesthetic problems that can be mended with plaster fillers.
Covering the crack could just make bigger problems harder to spot.
Your goal with covering the crack will likely be to hide the ugly fissure and keep moisture out of your basement. That is perfectly understandable. Unfortunately, when you cover cracks in your basement walls with plaster and go through the process of repainting them, it can make it harder to spot further signs of damage. If you do start to suspect that your foundation is in trouble, it will take a little longer for professionals to examine the problem and make a proper diagnosis if you've covered the damage up with a boatload of plaster filler and paint.
One crack is bound to lead to more.
If you think maybe you can cover that single crack, paint the wall, and be good to go, you may be very wrong in your assumption. If this is the first crack you have spotted in your basement walls, there is a good chance there will be more to come soon. Cracks because of foundation trouble are rarely a one-time situation until the bigger problem is attended to. This means all your resurfacing efforts with plaster will likely be in vain.