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New England Foundation Repairs

clock December 19, 2011 12:44 by author
Even in extreme cases New England Foundation and Stabilization Company can assist homeowners with their foundation repair needs by using quality helical piers.

New England Foundation Repair Project

New England Foundation RepairsOf the many projects New England Foundation and Stabilization Co. have reviewed and worked on, this small house is on the top of our list for the most severe settlement we have witnessed. Our company had reviewed this project several times under different owners until finally the settlement required repair of the structure or the city would declare it condemned. The entire perimeter of the structure had settled over years, but drastically along the front of the house. In some cases, the structure had settled over 12 inches in less than a span of 12 feet. At one time, this neighborhood was a large dump site and the depth of fill in some areas exceeded 80 feet.

Large cracks were somewhat visible from the exterior and interior of the house. However, a thin layer of fiberglass coating was parged onto the foundation to hide the deteriorating condition of the foundation to new buyers. The foundation had also rotated out from underneath the house up to 5”.

The interior of the structure also showed every significant sign of settlement in some of the most extreme conditions. This included sloping floors, sticking doors, floating walls, misaligned windows, and cracked drywall.

The Foundation Repair Solution

The ECP Resistance and Helical Piles proved to be the perfect solution for this house. The Steel Piers are hydraulically pressed piles that fasten to the foundation and advance through the poor bearing soils that allowed the structure to settle. The Helical Piers are small “screw” piles that are torqued through the poor soils into good bearing strata. A total of 20 ECP Model 350 Piers were installed on the inside of the foundation wall. A total of 4 Helical Piles were installed for the new column supports at the beam. The average depth of the ECP Push Piers was 65 feet.

Once all the piers were installed the foundation was lifted using the ECP Resistance Piers. The center beam was also temporarily stored and lifted as we raised the foundation. Due to the concrete condition, our lift was limited and a full restoration was not possible. However, in some areas we were able to achieve a lift of 8”. Once the foundation and beam were lifted, new columns were installed on the ECP Helical Piers. The foundation wall was also pushed back in an effort to re-straighten the wall.

The owner of the property purchased it in hopes of restoring and flipping the house. His crews removed some areas of the horsehair plaster where cracks had occurred due to the large lift. They then re-plastered and refinished the interior finishes.

After several weeks completing the full renovation, this house was placed on the market. The new owners will be pleased to know that their foundation will no longer sink being guaranteed for 25 years by our manufacturer ECP Steel Pier System and New England Foundation and Stabilization Co.

Foundation Repair During the Midwest Drought

clock December 15, 2011 05:42 by author
High quality steel piers are used by engineers to make foundation repairs. Concrete pressed piles are a cheap repair method used by unskilled contractors.

Foundation Repair Systems



Foundation repairMuch of the Midwest, especially from Kansas City to Dallas has experienced a tremendous drought.The soils have dried out to the point where homes are settling everywhere. Record numbers of foundations are being repaired throughout the Midwest. When there is a spike in any home repairs, whether its roof replacement, basement waterproofing or foundation repairs, bad contractors pop up everywhere. These contractors come in and use cheap methods of repair and move on to the next area as soon as the work dries up.


Not all methods of foundation repair were created equal. In fact, most techniques rely on the very dry, unstable soil for support. When choosing a foundation repair method for your home, you should know what the contractor performing the repair is offering. If they use concrete cylinders, pressed concrete piles, bottle jacks or some other cheap repair method, run far away. If your local contractor uses a steel pier method that is designed and engineered, like the ECP Steel Piers, invite them in and get a written quote for your structural repairs.

High quality steel piers are driven through the soil until they reach bedrock or other load bearing material: 

  This insures that the structure will not depend on the expansive soils prevalent in Kansas and Texas.

Engineered and designed to last a lifetime:

 The steel push pier method is the permanent solution to foundation problems, unlike concrete which may crack over time, steel piers last.

Each steel pier is individually tested to insure integrity:

Performing a synchronized lift or stabilization ensures high capacities and long term support.

Every ECP Steel Pier is mill certified and load tested for superior quality:

This insures that quality is not compromised, and is always superior.

Most projects are finished within a few days:

A typical project lasts no longer than 3-4 days, thanks to fully trained and skilled workers.


Methods of Foundation Repair

On the other hand, concrete pressed pilings or concrete cylinders are cheap and quick. Contractors use unskilled labor and low grade products to get in and out as quickly as possible leaving homeowners with short term fixes that almost always require regular adjustments due to ever changing weather conditions. These precast pressed piling are driven into the soil using bottle jacks and require soil friction for support. This is the same soil that is settling due to the dry weather.

Concrete pressed piles can crack or crumble under the homes load:

Concrete breaks under uneven loads due to misalignment

Precast concrete piles are unable to resist bending moments due to lateral loads:

Segmented piles are only held together by friction or a thin cable

Pressed concrete piles cannot attain sufficient depth:

6” diameter concrete cylinders cannot be driven deep enough for end bearing support

Many contractors use water-jetting to “lubricate” concrete pressed piles:

Injecting water into expansive soils is ill advised

Using cheap bottle jacks and shims to lift a structure as valuable as your home is not advisable:

Bottle jacks and human power does not compare to a hydraulic synchronized manifold lifting system as used on ECP Steel Piers.

Buyer beware, in times of tremendous drought. There are plenty of high quality foundation repair contractors available that use steel piering methods and will install them at reasonable prices. If you still are not convinced, contact an independent foundation engineer and ask him for his recommendation.




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