Like many areas in central Texas, the clay soils in Pflugerville, Texas are problematic for building construction and concrete slab foundations. When it rains the clay soils absorb large amounts of water and swell dramatically in volume. The swelling creates “uplift” for any structure built upon the soil and can be extremely damaging to rigid concrete foundations. Similarly, when weather conditions are very hot and dry the clay soils will lose significant amounts of water and shrink dramatically. When the soils shrink and lose contact with a concrete slab foundation, the foundation has literally lost its support. If the area of shrinkage is large enough then the foundation will crack and collapse until it reaches its support – which is the shrunken clay soil.
Dawson Foundation Repair utilizes only one method of foundation repair, the Bell Bottom Pier method. There is a simple reason for using this method exclusively – it works and it is permanent. This method of pouring concrete into excavated holes and reinforcing the concrete with steel rebar is the same conceptual method used to build support columns for highway overpasses and bridges. It is a time-tested and proven method. There are other repair methods available and they all have significant disadvantages. Please click on the following link to compare methods of foundation repair for more information.
For more information about Dawson Foundation Repair’s Pflugerville services, see the following:
Pflugerville / Austin Soil Characteristics As They Affect Foundation Repair
The Austin, Texas metro area has limestone formations, bluffs, rock outcroppings, chalk and a wide variety of soils including loam, clay and gravel. Of these characteristics, the clay soils present the greatest problem to homeowners because they tend to drastically shrink and swell with changes in the weather. The soil types change dramatically from west to east in the Austin area. In general, the western area of Austin and Travis county are situated on the edge of the Edwards Plateau and its limestone foundation.
This western area has far fewer residential foundation repair problems because of this limestone base. In the central part of the county, the Colorado River drainage system begins and the soil composition changes into a mixture of limestone, chalk and clay. Moving eastward, the soil composition becomes a mixture of topsoil and clay which expands and contracts depending on the water level of the soil. These shifts in soil conditions present many challenges to homeowners by creating cracks in their home’s concrete slab which can only be fixed with professional foundation repair.
The United States Department of Agriculture, Natural Resources Conservation Service issued an extensive report about the soils in Travis and Williamson Counties and the greater Austin area. Engineers and other technically inclined individuals may want to read the report in full. One part of particular interest, however, appears on page 98 of the report:
Shrink-swell characteristics of the soil need to be considered in designing a building foundation, particularly if piers are not used below the slab. Such clay soils as those of the Houston Black, San Saba, and Ferris series are particularly poorly suited to building sites. They swell when wet and shrink when dry. This shrinking and swelling exerts such pressure that walls and foundations crack unless they are specially reinforced, sidewalks and driveways crack, and streets and sidewalks deteriorate more quickly (plate V).
The characteristics of Texas soil present Pflugerville homeowners with challenges in maintaining and preventing damage to their home’s concrete slab. The underlying conditions frequently necessitate foundation repair in Pflugerville. For more information about how geological conditions can affect a home’s foundation, you can read a report written by engineer and PhD recipient Tom Witherspoon about the technical issues associated with Texas soils and how they affect your foundation repair choices.
Call us today for a FREE Foundation Inspection (free for homes not involved in real estate transactions). Dawson Foundation Repair will obtain all necessary building and engineering permits to begin your foundation repair job in Pflugerville. If you have warning signs of foundation damage, then we would be happy to visit your home or business.