Houston is the largest city in Texas and a home foundation repair nightmare. The geography, geology and climate all conspire to create a high degree of soil instability, making home foundation repair problems and concrete slab repair leveling a common occurrence. Houston and the Greater Houston metropolitan area are located in Harris County and together have a population of over 5.7 million, making Houston the fourth largest city and the sixth largest metropolitan area in the United States.
The metropolitan area includes 31 incorporated cities with populations over 10,000 including Galveston, Friendswood, Sugar Land, Baytown, Missouri City, Pasadena, The Woodlands, Conroe, Humble, Alvin, Missouri City, Pearland, La Porte, and Katy. Dawson Foundation Repair is proud to call Houston home and provides free, no obligation estimates* and our full range of home foundation repair services in every part of the Greater Houston area.
For more information about Dawson Foundation Repair’s Houston services, see the following:
· Request a FREE*, no obligation foundation inspection and cost estimate
· Browse the foundation repair methods commonly used in Houston, Texas
· See a step-by-step illustration of the foundation repair process
Houston Soil Characteristics as they affect Foundation Repair
The city of Houston has a total area of 601.7 square miles. Land comprises 579.4 square miles and water comprises 22.3 square miles. Most of Houston is located on the Gulf Coastal Plain and its main characteristic is its flatness. The flatness of the metropolitan area, along with the urban construction, have made flooding a recurring problem for the area. The highest point in Houston is in the far northwest with an elevation of about 125 feet above sea level. The downtown area has an elevation of about 50 feet and the average elevation of the city is 43 feet. There are four major bayous that carry water through the city and to the sea.
The land surface of the Houston metropolitan area is unconsolidated clays, clay shales, and poorly cemented sands. These soils were developed from river deposits formed from the erosion of the Rocky Mountains over many thousands of years. These sediments consist of a series of sands and clays which were deposited on decaying organic matter. The result is that today the plasticity of the soil (a rating which designates how much soil shrinks or swells with changes in moisture) is very high.
The United States Department of Agriculture, Soil Conservation Service, in cooperation with the Texas Agricultural Experiment Station issued an extensive report about the soils in Harris County and the Houston area. Engineers and other technically inclined individuals may want to read the report in full. One part of particular interest, however, appears on page 63 of the report:
Special attention needs to be given to the soils in determining if a site is suitable for foundations. In Harris County, some of the soils are montmorillonitic clay, which swells when wet and shrinks and cracks when dry. The pressure can be so great that walls and foundations crack even when specially reinforced. Damage because of shrink-swell potential is most likely to occur on Beaumont, Lake Charles, and Vamont soils. Other soils that have montmorillonitic clay in the lower layers are Bernard, Edna, Harris, Ijam, Kaman, and Midland soils. Other limitations to the use of soils for foundations are flooding, ponding, poor drainage, low strength, and high corrosivity.
If you are in the Greater Houston area and would like to take a detailed look at the soil in your neighborhood, consider looking at the United States Department of Agriculture’s Soil Survey Tool. It will give you an in-depth look at exactly what type of soil your home sits on and the characteristics one can expect from soils of that type. For your convenience, you may utilize a tutorial on how to use the Soil Survey Tool that we have compiled.
Climate Influences on Home Foundation Repair in Houston Texas
Houston’s climate is classified as humid subtropical with average high temperatures during the summer of 93°F. However, the humidity results in a heat index that can be 10-15° higher than the actual temperature. The hottest temperature on record in Houston was 109 °F (43 °C) on September 4, 2000. Winters in Houston are fairly mild and temperate with an average low of 45 °F (5 °C) in January. Houston receives about 48 inches of rain per year and it is fairly evenly distributed during the year. June usually receives the greatest amount of rain averaging 6.8 inches per year. Rainfall continues to cause flooding problems because often a large amount of rain will fall in a very short time period. The urban construction contributes to the flooding problem by eliminating much of the natural soil absorption.
Service Areas for Home Foundation Repair in Houston Texas
Dawson Foundation Repair will provide FREE*home foundation repair inspections and estimates for the Houston, TX area. (*free for homes NOT involved in real estate transactions)
We service the entire Houston metro area. Our most active service areas are in the following zip codes: 77042, 77077, 77079, 77098, 77040, 77059, 77062, 77089, 77406, 77471, 77478, 77479, 77025, 77035, 77096
Dawson has a local office in Houston. You may contact us between 9am and 5pm Monday through Thursday and between 9am to 4:30pm on Fridays at the following location:
Dawson Foundation Repair
Houston, TX 77081