Humans tend to perceive movements like vibrations in significant degrees which is why it is a possible cause of stress for the residents of a building that shakes.
Although these kinds of vibrations are not a massive risk to the structural strength of the building, it can still be a case that requires some attention.
Why does my house shake when a truck drives by? Vibrations in your house caused by traffic such as a heavy truck or bus driving by typically happen when these vehicles are driving at incredibly high speeds. The sudden break in the flow of the vehicle’s speed can cause tension to build, resulting in a chain reaction that ultimately ends with tremors in your house.
Prolonged and high-intensity vibrations may cause cracks to start forming in vulnerable parts of the foundation. If you start noticing these cracks, it’s time to call professionals and get it repaired.
Is It Normal For Your House To Vibrate When Trucks Drive By?
Whenever there is a heavy truck driving past your house in uneven road conditions, it is normal to feel vibrations in your home. When the truck starts bouncing on the bumpy roads, the movement kicks off a chain reaction through the ground to the house’s foundation. This reaction ends with the house vibrating.
Occasionally, you may experience similar vibrations in your house, even without heavy traffic. Human movement in high magnitudes within the home may also cause the house to shake a bit. However, the structural durability of the house is not compromised as a result of these vibrations, at least not in small amounts.
The most practical and long-term solution to a shaking house is to fix the road or repair the potholes and cracks in the road. While this may be a matter for high authorities to take care of, if residents in your same building also come together to raise a concern to the authorities, you may be able to achieve this incredible feat.
How To Make Your House Stop Vibrating?
The best solution is to build your house far away from the highways/roads, so that the vibration from traveling vehicles doesn’t reach your house’s foundation easily.
Construction officials can also consider integrating in-ground pile barriers and improving the soil structure beneath the place to prove the development from such instances. If the vibrations are caused due to the usage of heavy machinery, you can use motion-arresting pads or isolating mounts to boost the base loading in the house.
For rattling windows and hangings inside the house, you can take up a home improvement project that includes installing fibreglass sound batts in all the walls and ceilings of the house. This will help reduce the transmission of the sound waves through the building, which is why the vibration in the place.
Another precautionary step you can take is to install insulated ducting for all the cooling or heating systems and plumbing in your house so that it doesn’t come in contact with the house’s structural frame. You can also lay down carpets and insulation on your floors and walls to reduce the impact of the vibrations.
What Would Cause A House To Vibrate?
Many factors can contribute to the vibrations experienced in your house, such as heavy trucks driving by a nearby road, a subway or railway in close proximity to the building, a nearby construction site using heavy machinery, or even human movement in high magnitudes.
Apart from these manufactured factors, other natural calamities and situations can also contribute to your house moving. Whether it’s a turbulent storm or a strong gust of wind, or even an earthquake, all these instances can cause a building to vibrate. A pronounced temperature change can cause the building’s foundation to move with a sudden jolt in rare cases.
If you live far away from any of these but still experience vibrations in your home, it can be due to faulty plumbing systems. In this case, you can call the building authorities or hire a plumber to look at the plumbing in your house and make any changes if needed.
Typically in such instances, the culprit is the pressure of the water, which is too strong that the pipes cannot handle it and starts to vibrate under extreme pressure. This problem can be pressure valves that are malfunctioning or extreme pumping station pressures.
Can Vibrations Damage Your House?
The transmission of vibrations to a building can cause damage depending on the intensity of the movement. However, if it is due to heavy trucks and other traffic, it typically does not have the power to compromise the integrity of the building’s structure.
You need to note the duration of these vibrations, whether your house experiences these vibrations regularly in high intensities or if it is occasional. If it’s the former, the risk of damage to your house is higher due to prolonged exposure than the latter.
The distance between the sources of the vibration and the house is also a factor you need to consider if you fear the possible damage to your building because of these vibrations.
Typically, vibrating houses are normal in places with a lot of traffic; the roads are always busy, or there are heavy industrial construction sites nearby. In such a case, you may notice your windows shaking and rattling whenever the trucks pass by your building.
A practical solution to solve this problem can be to properly monitor the vibration levels of the house now and then. Pre and post-construction surveys should also be done by respective authorities to ensure the safety of the residents.