Different home foundation repair options.

Different home foundation repair options.


Pier and Beam Repair
Symptoms:

-Sagging floors
-Un-level floors
-Bowing floors
-Uneven or sloping floors
-Cracks in walls
-Doors stick or will not open and close
-Windows stick or will not open or close
-Displaced or cracked moldings
-Separation of doors, windows or garage doors
-Spaces between wall, ceiling or floor
-Walls separating from house
-Wall rotation
-Cracks in exterior or interior brick
-Cracks in sheetrock
-Cabinets separating from ceiling or wall
-Cracks in walls
-Tears or wrinkles in wallpaper
-Garage door not opening or closing properly
-Tiles cracked
Damage to any of these features can cause problems to the structure.

Pier and beam structures consist of a floor, sub-floor, sill plate (which supports the outside walls), pressure treated main beams, termite shield, floor joists, concrete pier and a footer. The footer, which is not always present, is for added support as well as aesthetics. The following diagram represents a common support:


Concrete Slab Repair

If you have any of the following symptoms you may have foundation problems:

-Displaced or cracked moldings
-Separation of doors, windows or garage doors
-Spaces between wall, ceiling or floor
-Walls separating from house
-Wall rotation
-Cracks in exterior or interior brick
-Uneven or sloping floors
-Cracks in sheetrock
-Doors sticking or not opening or closing properly
-Window sticking or not opening or closing properly
-Cabinets separating from ceiling or wall
-Cracks in walls
-Tears or wrinkles in wallpaper
-Garage door not opening or closing properly
-Floors sloping
-Tiles cracked

Homes built on a concrete slab are repaired one of two ways. We use pressed concrete, steel-locked piers or solid steel piers.

Steel Piers vs Concrete Piers
It is very confusing when it comes to deciding on steel piers or concrete piers. First, an inspection is needed and as a rule of thumb, if a property is 3 or more stories (usually commercial) steel piers are used. Most residential properties are repaired with pressed concrete piers unless steel piers are requested by the homeowner; it is best if these options are discussed with one of our qualified inspectors.

Concrete Piers
Steel-locked concrete piers are used in most residential, foundation repairs. This consists of digging about 3 feet down and over a few feet in order to get under the edge of the slab and a steel beam is located. The steel-locked concrete piers are then pushed with a hydraulic ram jack to refusal (bedrock). The piers (concrete cylinders) are reinforced with rebar that is cut in approximately 24” sections for extra support. When refusal (bedrock) is reached the steel-locked concrete piers are topped with a concrete cap and double piers are placed on top of the pressed concrete cap.

Steel shims are used to obtain ideal leveling.

Mud-jacking
Mud-jacking is the process of pumping “mud” or a mixture of concrete under a structure that has begun to sink. A core hole is drilled near the low spot and the “mud” is pumped under the structure until it is level.

Mud-jacking is most commonly used under sidewalks, driveways and concrete basements. It is usually not recommended for foundation repair because mud-jacking does not provide the deep support that a pier system does.

Drainage Systems
Drainage systems around your house are a very important part of preventing foundation problems. They are also an important part of good maintenance. A efficient way to tell if your house needs a drainage system is by doing an evaluation about an hour after a heavy rain. If water is standing anywhere within 7-10 feet, you more than likely should install a drainage system. Drainage systems can be any or all of the following:

-Gutters and downspouts
-Slope adjustment around house
-Drains and French drains

Retaining Walls
Some homes are built downhill and because of the amount of water coming off the hill a retaining wall is necessary. The retaining wall also includes a drainage system as seen in the diagram. Several different types of materials can be used when building a retaining wall. Concrete and rock are the most common. The cost of a retaining wall will depend on height and length needed.



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