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Foundation Repair Myths

clock February 22, 2013 06:54 by author
Before you believe the myths of foundation repairs, hire a foundation engineer so you can get advice.

The Myths Behind Foundation Repair

When you own a home, the last thing you want is a cracked or settling foundation. Unfortunately, it happens all too often, resulting in theFoundation repair, foundation settlement
need for professional foundation repairs. When it comes to something as serious as structural problems, quite a few myths exist. It's important to dispel misinformation and wild claims to get to the root of the problem and obtain the professional help you need from engineers and foundation repair professionals.

 Foundation Repair Myths

1. Foundation repair scares off potential home buyers

Real estate law requires full disclosure when it is time to sell your home. If you've had foundation repair work done on your home, you have to let potential buyers know. While hearing that you've had foundation repair may scare a few inexperienced buyers off initially, most will not, if you have the documentation and have used an experienced and respected foundation repair contractor. If you also have a report from a foundation engineer that explains the original problem and then signs off on the repair the prospective buyer can be assured that it is a permanent fix.

 The simple fact is, the majority of homes experience some sort of structural foundation problems during their lifetimes. Purchasing a home with a professionally repaired foundation, means buying a home that should never need similar foundation repairs again.

2. Foundation repair means a destroyed yard

Hiring a professional foundation repair company doesn't necessarily mean your lawn will be destroyed. While some repair techniques require excavation of earth around the foundation walls, others can be performed from inside and require little or no  exterior excavation. For example, methods such as installing high quality steel push piers inside your basement can be accomplished without exterior excavation. Also, crack repair, epoxy and polyurethane is a relatively simple repair done on the inside, when performed by an expert foundation repair contractor.

Remember, not every crack calls for the same repair technique. Before deciding on a foundation repair method, an experienced foundation repair specialist should find the root of your problem. He then will let you know if digging up the earth around your home is required.

3. Foundation repair is expensive

 When most think of foundation repairs, you probably picture yourself emptying your retirement account to pay for it. Today that has changed. Finding a crack in your basement wall doesn't mean you are about to break the bank. Modern foundation repair methods and techniques have come to your rescue. The cost depends on the cause of the crack and a settling foundation can even be done cost effectively.

Often foundation repairs consist of a simple, inexpensive polyurethane injection to prevent water intrusion or other procedures. Determining the true cause of your foundation cracks and settling can save you time and money. Call a foundation repair professional to diagnose your home's problem.

 4. Get three bids and take the cheapest

Not all contractors are created equally. The lowest bid is not always the best choice. This is your home, a home for your family, do research and hire professional engineers and high quality foundation repair contractors. Just because you do things correctly does not necessarily mean that you will spend more money.

Find a contractor with proper experience, training and insurance. How long have they been around? Are they backed by a national manufacturer? Will they still be there in the future if you have more problems? Are they approved by your foundation engineer? An experienced company offers solid warranties that protect you against unforeseen problems. Cheap and inexperienced contractors will give you just that – cheap work.

Nothing speaks for a contractor's work like his reputation. Ask around and find customers who have used them for similar projects. You can't go wrong with a contractor who has a good reputation with happy former customers and engineers that like to work with them.

While this list is not all inclusive. Searching http://www.myfoundationrepairs.com/ will provide you with the information about foundation repair that will educate you so you can dispel other myths about foundation repair.

Hiring a Foundation Engineer

 

Hiring of a foundation engineer is the most important piece of advice. These foundation engineers will evaluate your structure and write an analysis of the structure. They will know what type of foundation repair is needed and what products are needed to get the repair done correctly. Whether it be helical piles, steel push piers, wall anchors, or wall tie-backs, your foundation engineer will have the answer. Make sure your foundatiaon is protected by a nationally respected manufacturer that stands behind their products. 



Continuing Drought Causes Foundation Problems Across Metro

clock February 14, 2013 14:31 by author
Ongoing droughts in Kansas City are responsible for foundation settlement.

Drought Causing Foundation Problems

 

The following post comes is reprinted from KC Fox 4 News website.

 

Click here for foundation repair video from reporter

 

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Kansas City area is nearly 17 inches short of average rainfall for the year, and the ongoing drought is taking a toll on more than just crops and lawns — it’s hurting metro homes as well. Foundation and mudjacking companies say they are busier now than they have ever been, and with no major rainfall events in the forecast they say that they don’t expect to slow down anytime soon.

Homeowner Tom Kammerer has lived in his home for over 40 years but just recently he began noticing cracks — the tell-tale sign of a troubled foundation. “We noticed it in the garage, the floor, about an inch and a half had moved away from the wall there,” said Kammerer.

Dennis Morgan, the president of Pro Foundation Technology Inc., says that Kammerer isn’t alone. Morgan says that he hasn’t been this busy in 34 years of business. “I’ve never seen anything like it, nothing even close to it and our phones are still ringing and this is usually our very slow time,” said Morgan. He says that a year without rain is to blame for most of the major foundation problems homeowners across the metro are facing. “Our soil here is very plastic — it’s clay soil, it shrinks and swells,” said Morgan. “You need to have hydration in this clay to keep it stable. Unfortunately we haven’t had any water so the soil has shrunk. The footings are setting in that soil, consequently the house will shift and move many times.”

Morgan says that the average repair job can cost between $8,000 and $15,000, and that if you suspect that your home has a foundation problem, the first step would be to hire a structural engineer to evaluate your home, then pick a contractor to make the repairs. He says that his company is backed up into the spring with foundation repair work.

Kammerer says that he’s taking a big financial hit, but says that it could be worse. “It happened to us — otherwise we’ve been really lucky in life so I’m not complaining that much,” said Kammerer. “But it is a cost you don’t expect to get involved in.”



Foundation Problems as Drought Continues

clock February 14, 2013 07:13 by author
The weather conditions in Kansas City can affect your home's foundation by causing settlement. Protect your home by hiring a professional to install ECP helical piers.

Foundation Settlement in Kansas City

 

 

 

Foundation repair, helical piers, steel push piers, ECP

The severe drought in the Midwest is effecting many homeowners that are forced to repair damage to their homes' foundations. Local foundation repair companies and structural engineers can't keep up with the torrent of phone calls and waiting list extend for several weeks just to get an inspection or quote. The culprit is the clay soils throughout Kansas and Missouri that becomes baked by months of dry weather. The soils act much like a sponge, as they dry out the shrink and pull away from the foundation and as they get wet they seem to grow and expand moving the homes' foundation.

When a home's foundation cracks and shifts, problems manifest themselves on the upper levels of the home with jammed doors and windows along with cracks in drywall. No style or design of a home can hide from these forces, nor are they spared from foundation repairs. "We're seeing a lot more settlement issues across the board, from stone foundations in Brookside to new foundations in the suburbs", says Joe LaGue of Olson Foundation Repair in Olathe, Ks. The phone calls are coming from all across the Midwest, calling about cracks and settlement in their foundations. Homes with larger trees that are close to the home are more vulnerable to soils drying out around the foundation. The trees are using every last bit of the moisture in the clay soil trying to stay alive. The trees are competing with the foundation for moisture and the trees are winning.

The drought started in September of 2011 int he Kansas City area and it continues in the first quarter of 2013 with not real relief in site. Earth Contact Products, a leading manufacturer and national distributor of foundation repair products based in the Kansas City area has seen dramatic growth during the severe drought. They have seen the drought expand from Texas up through Oklahoma and Kansas and then eastward through St. Louis, Chicago and Indianapolis. According to ECP, this drought has created over two years worth of work for foundation repair contractors throughout the Midwest.

Foundation Settlement Solutions

 

The dry conditions are even more damaging when they reach below the deep footings below basement or crawlspace walls. Once a foundation has significant settlement the only way to solve the problem is to push it back up. The product of choice in much of the Midwest and especially in the Kansas City area is with steel push piers. These steel piers are driven deeply, well beyond the soils that are affected by moisture fluctuations, providing a good base to lift basement or crawlspace walls. ECP, the leading steel push pier manufacturer, provides foundation repair contractors with several types of push piers. From concentric resistance piers, where the steel bracket and pile is placed directly below the foundation walls to eccentric push piers that are place on the side of the footing. Both styles are highly effective in pushing foundations upward, but must be designed by a foundation repair expert based on the needs of the individual structure.

During foundation repair, underpinning strengthens and stabilizes the foundation. Underpinning is accomplished by extending the foundation in depth so it rests on more stable soil stratum or distributes its load across a greater area. ECP has developed and patented several types of piling systems. With the professionals and the best products available, you will be assured that your foundation repair is done right and you will have peace of mind that it is stable. 



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