It’s said that your home’s architectural outlook shows how well your foundation is. Displaced mouldings, cracked bricks, and separation around the walls are just some of the indications that your property’s foundation is facing potential peril. If left unrepaired, they can cause serious risks to your loved ones and can seriously devalue your house’s resale value.
Enhancing your home's exterior architectural design goes beyond aesthetics; it involves ensuring structural integrity, and one key aspect is reinforcing the foundation through advanced techniques in reinforced concrete structures.
Hence, it’s recommended that as soon as you see the signs mentioned above, you may want to consider the following ways to conduct foundation repair to improve your residence:
Underpinning may be the best method when your exterior walls have visible cracks and damage. This allows you to repair significant impairments to your foundation or strengthen its depth. If you’re unsure how to proceed with the repair, you can call professionals near you to help you out.
You may have to choose from the following types of underpinning depending on the current situation of your home:
A piled raft is away if your home requires complete underpinning. You can also use this method if the soil is too hard or your foundation is too deep. In this technique, you’ll break out the pockets under the footing while you place the piles in different locations. Lastly, you’ll need to hold the wall’s weight by reinforcing needle beams.
If you have impacted walls, going with the pile and beam method will make you install a mini-pile on the side of the said walls. You’ll have to place reinforced concrete after removing all the brickwork under the wall. This is most useful when you have high load capacity or limited access.
It's said that the screw piles and bracket technique is the best option if you want to reduce damaging other areas of your home due to vibrations when doing underpinning.
Mass pour is regarded as the most popular underpinning method wherein you’ll excavate in sections below the footing. Then, you need to place concrete on each exposed pit. Most importantly, you’ll be repeating such a process until all areas are underpinned.
Many residential exteriors include swimming pool decks, sidewalks, driveways, and slabs. When these areas sink in small quantities, you can perform slab jacking to correct them. You can do this by using a cement grout and pumping it in concrete slabs that have holes. After a while, the grout becomes a competent bearing for the slab when it turns into a dense concrete mass.
Aside from cement grout, you can also use a soil-cement lime grout when doing slab jacking. This is similar to the first one, but the lime content stabilizes the sub-base or base. As a result, it can prevent the problem from reoccurring.
A waterproof masonry sealant can also be an excellent product to cover the patches and cracks of your foundation. You can use the sealant when the cracks are just in their early stages to prevent them from becoming worse. Options come in silicone, epoxies, vinyl concrete, and hydraulic cement – you have to choose the suitable one to the severity of the cracks.
Nonetheless, it’d still be best if you could identify the root cause of the cracks. While sealants can be a temporary remedy, finding and solving the root cause will help prevent further damage and water infiltration to the foundation. Aside from being quick, sealants are believed to be most suitable for small cracks. For the major ones, you may have to consider other repair tactics.
Another foundation repair method you can look into is piering. It involves the process of utilizing concrete or metal posts to bolster foundations. Experts agree that it’s a great option if your property is built on clay soil. Furthermore, it’s a low-cost method favoured by many as it doesn’t require full excavation.
However, just like any other foundation repair job, it’s highly advised to conduct rounds of inspections to avoid committing an error that could ruin your dream house plan for your repaired foundation may not be able to take on the load exerted on it.
You can also choose from these two piering methods:
Helical piers are similar to large screws wherein you have to use a hydraulic torque motor to drive it into the ground. You’ll also be using welded or bolted wall brackets to lock the foundation into place after correcting its level.
With push piers, you’ll be using a hydraulic ram to drill the epoxy-coated or galvanized epoxy-coated steel pipe into the foundation.
For undisclosed or time-sensitive foundation repairs, high-density polyurethane (PU) foam could be a good option. This is because it rises quickly and it’s widely available and very accessible for use to remedy emergency foundation issues.
Even so, you also need to ensure that you’re using the most suitable high-density polyurethane foam depending on the state of your foundation.
The property’s exterior is one of the first things people will see and foundation damages can compromise it greatly. Whether you’re planning to sell your home or not in the future, making sure that your foundation is well-taken care of is absolutely necessary. The abovementioned insights aim to enlighten you with some of the techniques you can choose from in doing foundation repairs.
As a rule of thumb though, it’s recommended to work with a building expert to help you out with finding out about the foundation repair work.