Sinking Foundation Damage and repair guide
We will discuss repair of Sinking foundation in three steps:
- Step 1 – Examination of the Structure by an expert
- Step 2 – As soon as the problem is identified, hire a contractor or a foundation specialist
- Step 3 – Methodologies or techniques used for sinking foundation repair
Step One: Identification and Examination of the Structure by an expert
As soon as you find any signs of foundation damage that we discussed in our previous article “Identifying Sinking foundation”, you should immediately contact a professional (structural engineer). The first thing that you should be doing is getting your house examined and checked properly for structural damage.
The structural engineer is an expert in this field. He will be able to tell you as to what has to be done in order to prevent further damage and all that is required to be repaired. Sometimes people tend to think that engineers might exaggerate about the damages occurred to the structure because of monetary concerns. However, it should be kept in mind that the engineer has no vested interest in these kind of repairs. He is the person who would give you an accurate and unbiased opinion. And with his help and advice, the work is then carried out by the foundation specialists or a general contractor. This was all about STEP-1.
Step two: Hire a contractor or a foundation specialist
Now once you are aware of the problems in the structure, you should immediately hire a contractor or a foundation specialist to do the repair work.
Generally, foundation repairs are pretty expensive. You need to be aware of the prices in the market. In order to select a good contractor, you need to shop around and get several bids from different contactors. Foundation repair is a crucial job and requires expertise. So experience would be one important factor which you should consider while selecting a Contractor. Do check his previous work records to figure out if he is fit for the job you want done.
Step three: Techniques for repairing a Sinking foundation
The question is, how could the sinking foundation be corrected or repaired?
Well, there are various techniques to fix a sinking foundation. The technique utilized for the repair of a sinking foundation depends on the soil condition and damage occurred to the structure.
The most popular technique to fix sinking foundation is HIGH PRESSURE GROUTING.
As the name itself suggests, high pressure grouting is the method of injecting grout into the unstable soil at high pressure. This helps in improving the integrity and stability of the soil. This method is also used if the structure is to be lifted up.
Use of Load bearing Piers
Load bearing piers are used to repair the sinking foundation. It helps in lifting and stabilizing the foundation. This method is economical in construction. It provides a permanent solution to foundation problems.
In some cases, even helical piers are used for the same purpose. The selection of piers depends on the conditions of the soil and structural damage caused. These kind of peirs are especially useful where fill material has been used and the water table is high.