Engineering and Foundation Repair

Trusting your home to a foundation repair company requires a great deal of confidence in the company you hire to do the work. This confidence comes much easier if you have done your research and understand the technical side of how your foundation will be repaired – specifically, the engineering aspect of it. Because so much is at stake, many homeowners will hire an engineer to help them make a wise decision, and this is an excellent option. At a minimum, however, you should understand what engineers have to say on this subject of foundation repair. So it is wise to have some understanding about engineering and foundation repair.

Independent Structural Engineers are not associated with a particular foundation repair company, so who better to assess the structural condition of your home than an engineer? Engineers will take different factors into consideration when evaluating your home. The first is the actual structure. Construction materials vary and while the average weight of a home is approximately 1,000 pounds per foot at its perimeter, the materials used in construction have an effect on the stability of the foundation. Secondly, an engineer will consider the makeup of the soil. As we’ve addressed in earlier articles, the soil’s expansion and shrinkage over time due to varying moisture conditions is the greatest stressor on a home’s foundation.

The soil in your geographic location has much to do with the specifics of a foundation repair job. For instance, the depth of piers or pilings used in the repair will need to be adjusted based on your soil. At Dawson, we perform soil testing on your site to a depth of 15’ in order to confirm the condition of the soil at deeper levels. Qualified engineers recommend this testing process as a part of a foundation repair job, however not all companies provide this service.

Clearly not everyone wishes to become an engineer or spend hours reading over technical information in the process of selecting a foundation repair company. But, getting the facts before you make this investment will give you a greater peace of mind that you have chosen the best method of safeguarding your home. Having the experience and time-tested opportunity to work with many highly qualified engineers, we believe the only conclusive repair method is drilled bell-bottom piers, which is the only method that we use at Dawson Foundation Repair. However, we strongly encourage you to review some of the additional information on our website including several reports and in-depth studies put out by engineers specializing in conditions like those we see in Texas. Educate yourself about engineering and foundation repair.

Did we tell you about the structural engineers at A-1 Engineering in Austin and San Antonio? Well, they have some very strong opinions about the various stacked concrete cylinder methods (pressed piles) installed by most foundation repair contractors in Texas.  They call these various methods “temporary” and “almost useless.”  So, do you want an “almost useless” foundation repair job? 

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