Why we Like Bell Bottom Piers

Bell Bottom Pier illustration; proven and permanentWe Like Bell Bottom Piers

The reason we like Bell Bottom Piers is simple – they are better than any other option. Yes, they are more expensive and require a longer installation time. But we are talking about your home and most people would prefer the best option even if it costs a little more.  And when you compare Bell Bottom Piers to the other options it becomes very clear that the other options are inferior.

Proven and Time-Tested

Bell Bottom Piers have proven themselves over time.  They are almost 100 years old and were developed in Texas for commercial buildings. Builders in the 1900s had the same problem we have today – clay soil that shrinks when dry and expands when wet.  This problem is referred to as soil movement and Bell Bottom Piers (or drilled piers) have been and are currently used for commercial buildings, bridges, and highway overpasses today.  Bell Bottom Piers are the best engineering solution offered to resist soil movement.

About 60 years ago homebuilders started building homes on concrete slab foundations. And about 60 years ago these homes started having problems with cracks in the interior and the exterior.  Yes, it is the same problem – clay soils that move.

Bell Bottom Piers were adapted for residential use some decades ago.  It was the first and is still the best solution for leveling a home as close as possible to its original elevation.


The installation of Bell Bottom Piers is a permanent solution for homeowners that need foundation repair. They are built to be solid, one piece structural supports with a wide base (foot) to support heavy loads. They are reinforced with steel rebar and at Dawson we have never had a Bell Bottom Pier fail.  Bell Bottom Piers avoid all of the installation problems of cheaper methods.


At Dawson we have been installing Bell Bottom Piers since 1984. We have a very good idea of how well our piers are performing because if there is a problem the customer will call us. The Bell Bottom Pier system is not perfect and occasionally we will have to revisit a customer and make a leveling adjustment because of significant soil movement or drainage problems. But this is a very rare occurrence.

With the other methods our competitors are visiting their customers repeatedly to adjust their systems – sometimes annually. When a contractor (our competition) has to make annual adjustments to their system then it is a obvious failure of the system to support the home. Some of our competitors are making so many re-adjustment visits that they are beginning to charge homeowners. So homeowners have paid for a failed system and are charged again and again for adjustments to the failed system.

You can read more about these other repair systems from some structural engineers who have described our competitor’s systems as “useless” and “temporary.”


1 thought on “Why we Like Bell Bottom Piers”

  1. Clay soil that is more succeptible to drainage issues is a major concern across several areas in the US. When considering a Bell Bottom Pier or any other “solution” to uneven structures due to soil shifts or errosion, it’s important to ask that the repair team investigate the potential for future issues caused by further errosion and implement a drainage system that is capable of rectifying any issues.

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