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Foundation Issues Job in Boston

clock June 23, 2011 07:31 by author blogadmin
Helical piers are used for a limited access foundation project in Boston by Atlas Systems of New England.

Local Contractor looks to Atlas System of New England for Foundation Support

A local Chinatown contractor wanted to build a 5-story addition to an existing structure but was stymied by foundation issues: how to support a 5-story building with the difficult soil conditions often found in the Boston area; with these soil types it was apparent that a deep foundation system was needed but which type and the footprint of the new addition is located within a walled area several building lots from the closest cross street and highly inaccessible. Because restricted site accessibility, poor soil conditions, and the need for a deep foundation system, there was only one possible solution. The solution involves utilizing Atlas Systems of New England to install a helical pier foundation support system specifically designed for the client.

Foundation Repair Solution

helical piersBy installing helical pier foundation solutions, your foundation becomes stable and secure with little to no disturbance to the worksite. Helical piers is a structural piering devices for residential and commercial foundation applications in use today. When installed deep into stable soil they can be used to lift homes, stabilize foundations, elevate walkways, and retain walls.

The process to design a proper deep foundation support system for this project was dependent on the following:

    • Having a series of soil borings taken on-site to determine actual soil classification, location and depths of soil strata, and soil bearing capacities.

    • Having a geotechnical/structural engineer review the soils to determine what type of deep foundation system is best suited for the project.

    • Develop a foundation plan showing pile design, pile locations, and depths of installation.

    • Keeping accurate pier installation logs that record depths of piers and installation torques.

Atlas Systems of New England was subcontracted by the contractor (CC Brothers of Chinatown) to provide the deep foundation helical pier support system for this project. Our team of professionals offer the best foundation repair solutions to fix any situation. The Structural Engineer for this project hired by the owner was:

Mark Liao, P.E. Liao Associates, Inc. 625 Bedford St. E. Bridgewater, MA 02333

For additional information on this project please contact: 
Dennis P. Geisser at Atlas Systems of New England. Call 800-688-9774 and visit us at

Residential Foundation Repairs - How Much Does it Cost?

clock May 27, 2011 09:07 by author blogadmin
Every homeowner wants to know the cost of foundation repairs. As soon as you spot signs of damage, contact a foundation engineer to avoid spending more money.


When it comes to residential foundation repairs, the number one question asked is - How much does it cost?

Many of us also think about our home that is in need foundation repairs and think of how much of a hassle it can be to have it repaired. The first step is early detection. At the first sign of damage you should contact a foundation repair contractor right away for an inspection and repair cost estimate. Foundation problems do not go away, they will not fix themselves. You first must have the foundation inspected and the damage assessed by a professional before supplemental damage occurs.

How do they come up with an estimate?

Foundation repair contractors and professional foundation engineers take many factors into consideration when assessing your foundation for repair. After the initial inspection, they will gather the facts, decide on a mode of repair and determine how long it will take to fix the foundation. With this information in hand the foundation professional will then review outside factors that may influence the repair. These factors include the weather, driveways or patios, landscaping, street creep as well as the slope of the land surrounding the homes foundation.

Before committing to a foundation repair contractor, you should get some references from other homeowners and preferably the engineering community. Simply getting three estimates and accepting the cheapest may not always be in your best interest. Generally your home is your most valuable asset and should be treated as such. The type of foundation repair materials and the contractors experience and reputation should weigh heavily in your decision making process. Sometimes it will be worth it to pay more in order to get a better quality job and often times your long term costs will decline with this approach. Remember, it will cost you more to have the job redone due to inferior work. Another factor that will determine the cost is the area in which the damage is located. Certain locations of the foundation will cost more to repair than others.

Foundation repairs do not have to cost a lot of money. Yes, they can be expensive but, if you catch the problem early you will generally save some money. Many foundation repair contractors offer payment plans or Same-as-Cash financing to help relieve the burden of major repairs. Home equity loans are another source of monies to spread the burden over time.

So, how much does foundation repairs cost? Well that is like asking how much does an airline ticket cost. It depends of when, where, why and how. Do your research and then contact a foundation repair contractor or foundation engineer and they will help you answer this question for you and your home.


Foundation Cracks – Diagonal basement wall cracks

clock April 24, 2011 19:45 by author blogadmin
If you notice diagonal cracks on your basement walls, hire a foundation expert to repair your foundation before water leaks destroy your home's structure.


Tips to help determine the cause of diagonal foundation cracks in basements:

In building corners in cold climates - frost heave, shallow footings, water problem, or poor backfill. In a raised ranch with a garage located in part of the basement, often you will find step cracks in the front and rear foundation walls on the garage-end of the home. These cracks may correspond to some related observations:

(1) If a downspout or gutter spills rain water against the home, these forces will often combine to make more severe frost cracks appear on the garage side of the home.  

(2) There may be less backfill against the front and rear foundation walls at the front of the garage.

(3) The decrease in backfill combined with an un-heated garage may expose these building corners to more frost damage

In the foundation wall anywhere, wider at bottom than top – often due to foundation settlement.

From corner towards adjacent opening, wider at top than bottom - often due to foundation settlement, expansive clay soil, frost damage, or damage from a shrub/tree close to the foundation wall.

Under a ground floor window, from sill to ground, sill bowed up - often due to foundation heave, clay soil, frost, shallow or missing footings.

Over a window or door, straight or diagonal - may appear as horizontal along top or bottom of header, vertical at ends of header (possibly due to differences in thermal expansion of different materials of header vs. wall) or vertical/diagonal at center of header (loading failure) or at corners (possible point-load failure)

Cracks in a poured concrete basement walls which are diagonal or vertical and which are generally uniform in width, or which taper to an irregular hairline form, usually in fact a discontinuous crack in the hairline area, are usually shrinkage cracks and should not be ongoing nor of structural problem, though they may invite water entry through the wall.




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