The process of foundation repairing involves the inspection of the damage, recommending methods to fix it, and repairing it. Foundation repair is required when the soil around your house starts sinking or shifting. This can result in cracks on walls, ceilings, floors, etc. If left unattended, this problem can get worse over a period of time and would be a costly affair to fix.
How to Select a Foundation Repair Company?
As you choose a foundation repair company, it is also important that they have the proper certifications and insurance before starting any work for you. You should ensure that the company has been in business for at least three years and have good reviews/referrals from customers who have worked with them in the past. For example, if there was flooding in the basement, flood certification is required by law before working on such cases. You can also request interview questions in advance so that you know what to expect during the conversation with potential companies. Finally, an estimate is provided after the assessment of the damage to your foundation, so you should expect a written quote detailing the items being repaired along with the estimated cost.
Types of Foundation Repairs
Helical pier foundation repairs are an effective method for repairing horizontal or sub-surface soil erosion problems that have occurred around homes and other structures built on slabs. The ground around the structure has sunk due to poor drainage caused by natural reasons like torrential rain or manmade causes like poor drainage, overloading of load-bearing soils, etc. When water is allowed to accumulate at certain locations below the home, it leads to further loosening and settling of surrounding soils which compound the problem. This leads to uneven surfaces around your house, which can make it difficult to enter or exit the house. The process of repairing starts with probing the soils under your foundation using specialized equipment that locates any irregularities in soil densities, which are deemed repairable.
A helical pier is attached to a hydraulic jack at one end and driven into the ground through powerful mechanical force. Attached to each helical piers are staggered steel rods that extend towards the exterior surface, forming a 3D mesh-like structure pressing against soil resistance below. Thus, as excavations are made around selected locations under your foundation, holes are drilled into these rods, which are then filled with epoxy grout to permanently fix it in place once done. As foundation repairs are completed on all targeted areas, steel supports from the interior of your home are attached to helical piers on all four sides for added support. This ensures a long-lasting solution to any sinking problems you may have around your house.
Mudjacking involves filling up low spots with quick-drying concrete. This can be done to fill up cracks in driveways, sidewalks, etc. If the problems are more severe, like uneven soil gaps around your home’s foundation/slab, this is best suited for small areas where a metal or wooden bracing system is attached to prevent further sinking of surrounding soils. Mudjacking involves drilling small holes into low spots where mud-like material is injected under high pressure. This material quickly hardens and fills up these gaps making the area level again after a few hours of time on-site, allowing you to walk over it as before without any concern.
Concrete slab leveling is a process that digs underneath slabs and shores them up with beams until the correct grade is achieved, thereby restoring the original height & support on which buildings sit.
Concrete slab leveling keeps your floors level but does not address movement or sinking of soils that cause structural damage to building foundations, piers, beams, etc. The end result is that you may not need to replace your foundation entirely immediately after the process is done, but it does not mean that your problem has gone away either. You can think of it like this- when your car’s tire is low on air, and you inflate it a bit at a gas station with a handheld pump, it works for a while until more damage gets done due to continued under-inflation, which then becomes too severe to fix without going through the hassle of replacing the whole tire.
Flood Wall Repair is used where vertical pressure grouting chambers hold the wall/floor together upon completion of the floodwater draining process. We hired an entreprise de Béton aka concrete company here in Canada to do the fixing. You can find a list of contractors from your local contractor association or through referrals from friends and colleagues.
Floodwall repair is another effective way of dealing with damage to walls and floors resulting from overflowing rivers and waterways. The process involves digging a small trench around the affected areas, inserting plastic that is made watertight, followed by filling it up with pressurized grout that ensures long-lasting results without any need for further maintenance.
Drilling deep pilings into liquefiable soils below ground level prevents shifting & sinking but may result in side heaving on upper floors. This can be tackled through surface grade correction through soil compaction or by lifting the entire foundation/flooring system, and glass block infills using scissor jacks and steel plates. Conventional underpinning is commonly used to transfer the entire building weight by attaching footing/foundation system directly to deep pilings. This method works well for empty slabs but may result in heaving on upper floors depending on the size of structures involved.
You should consider hiring a contractor as this is a specialized field, and you may not have the expertise to correctly diagnose foundation problems. However, if you are confident about the work yourself, then an important step would be to find out whether your home insurance policy covers any repairs done by a third party if asked for. You can ask them directly about what kind of issues your policy covers. Some companies even offer incentives for choosing their repair services over others which can help save money in the long run. This is another advantage of hiring a contractor as they will provide fair estimates that include all necessary work being done on your house with no hidden costs or fine print that could catch you by surprise later.