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Foundation Repair - Not a DIY Project

clock October 1, 2013 06:06 by author
Don't hire your local handyman to fix your sticking windows and doors. A foundation engineer can repair your damages by using helical piers and steel piers.

Your home means the world to you and your family. On a regular basis you probably go around and check your foundation for any signs of damage. Any time you see a crack in the wall, you will need to investigate it further. Any type of crack can lead to further damage such as water leaking in or insects and critters making their way to your basement. When water leaks in, not only can your possessions get ruined, but the damage to your foundation walls puts your house at risk.

 Water damage often leads to bowed walls or leaning walls. When there is too much water in the soil, it puts pressure on the walls pushing them in and creating the bowing walls and making cracks in the foundation. When there is a lot of water in soil, it can get under your foundation and weaken the support under your house. Another thing you may notice is that your windows and doors are sticking. This may be due to weather conditions of humidity, but it also another signal to you that you may have foundation issues. No matter what the issue is with your foundation, you should always have a professional come out and take a look to assess any damage you are seeing.

Many homeowners often try to fix any problems themselves to save a little money. Foundation repair is not usually a do-it-yourself project. Filling in some of the gaps in the foundation with caulk may help for the moment. If there is more of a major issue, you are only putting off the help you may need from an experienced foundation repair company.  When you put off getting the extra help, you may be creating bigger problems that will cost you even more money. Many foundation companies use some of the best products on the market from Earth Contact Products (ECP).

A foundation repair contractor might suggest that helical piers and steel piers be used to support your foundation. These products are driven into the soil until stable bedrock is found. Now your house is lifted to level it should be at. This will take care of any settlement issues you may be having with your foundation. You may also need to have some plate anchors installed by your contractor to help brace your walls. The plate anchors will eventually straighten your leaning wall. Once you have done all this with your professional contractor, you may need to add interior and exterior drainage systems to your to do list. This will keep all the work you have done safe and your home stable.   



Hybrid – The New Foundation Repair Marketing Term

clock October 14, 2009 10:21 by author blogadmin
If you want to support your home or commercial building permanently, hire an engineer to get a quality steel piering system that offers a lifting system.

 

The service industry has always relied on marketing to promote their wares and service. Sometimes the truth is stretched in these promotions to create excitement in the consumer. Often times these promoters attach themselves to keywords or terms that are in vogue. Recently this has happened in the foundation repair industry with the term – Hybrid.

 

The definition of hybrid is – the combination of two or more different things, aimed at achieving a particular goal or objective. On the surface this sounds good and globally responsible ideas pop into our minds. In 2009 hybrid congers up the idea of “Green Technologies” and smaller carbon footprints, and this is exactly why marketers use the term hybrid.

 

In the foundation repair industry hybrid pier systems are the combination of two or more differing materials to achieve an objective. Sounds great doesn’t it. But, what is the objective? And, does combining any two or more materials always create a better product? Well with out question the objective is to sell more product for the manufacturer. This may not necessarily be good for the consumer, just more expensive. Next, just because you combine two or more materials together does not mean that it will perform better that either of the materials alone. Combining oil and water does not make better oil or better water.

 

 Today we hear about combining steel and concrete to make “hybrid” foundation repair systems. They will advertise “the best of both worlds”, “the strength of steel with the benefits of concrete”. Well this sounds good but you must look past the advertising and see the engineering. Placing steel piers below concrete cylinders actually will take away the advantages of the steel piers and hamper the strength of the concrete. They say that they use steel to achieve depth (reading between the lines – concrete cylinders do not drive deep enough to supply support) and concrete in the upper soil zones to prevent corrosion. If this is the case, then why do they use steel shims at the very top of their system? Next, if the steel piers are galvanized to structural standards how are they going to corrode?

 

The next thing to think about is how will they drive the steel piers to the required depth if they are putting shallow driving concrete cylinders on top of the steel pier sections? The truth is, they will drive deeper than they were with concrete segmented piles alone but not as deep as true engineered steel piering systems.

 

Another combination of steel and concrete is to fill the steel pipe with a cement or grout mixture to “increase strength”. Sounds good, but does it work? Well let us look at it from a logic stand point (marketing people hate this), if the grout mixture is not as strong as the steel will it really increase the strength of the system? No! Adding a weaker component to a strong component will not make the system stronger it only makes it a hybrid. Do not fall for this smoke and mirrors advertising. The simple solution is to ask an engineer what they recommend. Engineers do not fall prey to slick commercials and fast talking salesmen, they look at numbers, calculations and sound engineering practices.

 

So remember, if you want to buy a hybrid car to save money on fuel and leave a smaller carbon footprint – great buy it. If you want something to support your home or commercial building permanently listen to an engineer and require the highest quality steel piering system available that incorporates a manifold lifting system.

 



Is your basement wet?

clock June 27, 2009 21:12 by author blogadmin
Identifying the source of water in your basement will make your home healthier and more structurally sound. Hire an expert to install a waterproofing system.

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Having water in your basement is never a good thing. From structural deterioration to mold growth, wet basements create a number of hproblems for your home. When you have wet basement problems, it's critical to get your basement dry and keep it that way. In addition to standard basement waterproofing strategies, you may want to consider a whole house dehumidifier. Increasing ventilation and improving the overall air quality of your home, these systems can help ensure your basement stays dry!

Basement Waterproofing

Musty odors? Visible mold and mildew? Buckling or bowing walls? You likely have a basement moisture problem. Even when you don't see water, any of these problems is a sign of a leaky foundation. Damaging moisture is seeping into your home, so you need to attack it at its source! There are a variety of basement waterproofing methods and resources, so be sure that your contractor has tailored your water remediation to suit your home. The most important aspect of any basement drying solution is to identify the moisture's entry point and eliminate it. A number of options are available for sealing your basement and removing water, including:

  • Interior drain tiles
  • Sump pump installation
  • Battery or back up sump pumps
  • Vinyl wall sheeting
  • Crawl space encapsulation
  • Foundation crack repair
  • Steel Push Piers
  • Helical Tiebacks
  • Wall Plate Anchors

 Foundation Repair

Many times the water that is entering your home can also cause structural foundation problems. The moisture causes soils to consolidate under your foundation which in turn causes settlement. This settlement can be resolved with steel push piers or helical piers mounted under the footing transferring the weight of the structure from these consolidating soils to these newly installed piles.

So if you have signs of water in your basement contact a professional to help solve your homes problems. From waterproofing to foundation repairs solving water problems will make your home healthier and more structurally sound. Because...it's your home!

 



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