Strength and stability are benefits of a strong foundation. The weight of your home rests on the foundation, and the structural integrity can be maintained through a solid foundation that remains intact and in position. A strong foundation is the best way to prevent damage to your home and protect your family from adverse weather conditions. Shifting soil, excessive ground water, voids, sinkholes, expansion and/ or contraction of soil, improper grading, drainage problems, and natural disasters such as floods, earthquakes, tornadoes and hurricanes can all cause your home’s foundation to settle, sink, or shift position. This can greatly impact the structural integrity of your family home.
There are several types of foundations possible, with certain types more prevalent than others in certain areas of the country. In coastal cities, for instance, pier and beam foundations are more common due to the possibility of high water levels that could cause a home to become flooded. Concrete slab foundations are common in other parts of the country, and concrete piers can be used to add stability to a foundation in need of repair or extra support.
What is a Pier Foundation?
There are two types of pier foundations; concrete or masonry piers, and drilled caissons. The size and shape of masonry or concrete piers used depends on the nature of the soil in the area and the depth of the bed. Concrete pier foundations are usually built 1-1.5 feet above ground. This gap is necessary to prevent the moisture damage to wooden structures that would result from the structure resting directly on the ground. Piers can be square, rectangular, or circular, and diameter of piers is usually 6, 8, 10, or 16 inches. The depth of pier foundation is below the freezing depth, usually around five to six feet.
A pier foundation has several advantages, including:
- Necessary materials are easily available
- Less materials and labor are required
- No extensive excavation if necessary
- Saves money and time
- A wide variety of design options
- Utilities are easily installed and easily accessed due to the space between the structure and the ground
- Excavation can be done using a shovel
- Increased air flow reduces heating bills by keeping air circulating underneath the structure
- Flood damage to floors can be avoided due to the above-ground elevation
- Causes minimal disruption to the soil environment
- Foundation inspection is easier
- Utility workers can easily get into the space between the structure and the ground to investigate plumbing or electrical problems
- No ground vibration normally associated with driven piles
- Bearing capacity can be increased by under-reaming
- Site can easily be restored to its natural state at the end of the building’s useful life
When Should Concrete Piers Be Used to Reinforce My Foundation?
If your home’s foundation is in need of help, concrete piers are an extremely effective method of foundation repair for homes with damaged or sagging foundations. A hole approximately one foot in diameter is drilled to a depth of anywhere from 12 to 20 feet underneath your home. This depth ensures that the bottom of the pier is anchored in stable soil, thus preventing any further settling or sinking. Once the hole is drilled, the concrete is poured, then allowed to cure for up to seven days. Steel bars may be used to reinforce the structure of the concrete for added strength and stability. Once the concrete has cured, hydraulic jacks will lift your home to its proper height, and either concrete or steel spacers will be installed to close the gap between the top of the piers and the foundation, creating a level surface for your house to rest upon. Depending on the type of damage your foundation has suffered, repairing it may require installing one or more concrete piers.
At Advanced Foundation Repair we offer Dallas homeowners precise inspections to pinpoint any foundation issues before they become major problems. Our easy payment and financing options, as well as our transferable lifetime warranties, help give you peace of mind that you’re getting the best possible foundation repair. Our Advanced Pro-Lift Technology will professionally correct your foundation problems. If you believe your home’s foundation is in trouble, you can depend on Advanced Foundation Repair in Dallas for the best in quality foundation repair and superior customer service.