Foundation Settlement Repair
ABT Will Target Foundation Settlement and Provide the Solution
You're probably wondering what causes a structure's foundation to settle. The definition of foundation settlement means anything that causes the foundation of a structure to change, crack or move in any way. In most cases, it's not because the structure is faulty, but what's around the structure is what makes a foundation settle. We offer our services in these areas.
If you think your home has signs of foundation settlement, call the professionals at ABT or fill out our online form for a free estimate and recommendations on how to remedy your settling foundation. We know what makes a foundation settle in Wisconsin because we've been successfully treating this condition for over 15 years!
Signs of settlment might include--
- Cracks in exterior walls and in the foundation walls
- Leaning chimney
- Interior cracks in drywall or plaster--especially over doors or windows
- Sticking windows and doors
Let's take a look at some of the causes of what makes a foundation settle:
- Changes in the moisture content of the soil. This seems to happen more often these days. With our extreme weather cycles, the soil moisture content surrounding your foundation sometimes goes from one extreme to the other--too much to too little. A change in the moisture content of the soil can have devastating effects on your foundation. Too much moisture and your foundation walls are subject to hydrostatic pressure. Too little moisture and your foundation walls are not properly supported. ABT knows the clay soil in our area has a tendency to be very unforgiving.
- Weak soil structure. This occurs mostly in residential areas where foundation footings are laid in based on general guidelines and not soil specific standards. When a builder takes into account the type of soil the foundation will be sitting on, the builder can make sure the foundation is protected from future damage if the soil structure is weak.
- Maturing trees and vegetation. In older homes, large trees and shrub roots can eventually demand alot of water, resulting in a dehydration in the soil around the trees and vegetation--and around the foundation. Sometimes they can take root in foundations, making them settle, crack and generally deteriorate.
- Soil consolidation. This occurs when the weight of the foundation compresses clay soil that is so prevalent in our area. When clay soil is compacted, it becomes denser or smaller, and eventually over time leads to foundation problems because when soil consolidates it can lead to voids around the foundation and a generally sinking of the foundation overall. It could take years, sometimes decades, but eventually poor soil consolidation shows in the health of your foundation.
- Poor soil compaction. When a foundation is laid over soil that has not been properly compacted, it can lead to foundation problems. This usually happens in residential areas that are graded. Sometimes when soil is moved from one place to another, and then a foundation is laid over the top of that soil and it hasn't been compacted properly, the foundation will settle improperly.
Issues with the composition of the soil are very typical -- too much clay, too much sand makes it hard to drain off resulting in water just sitting outside your foundation. And that means your foundation is subject to hydrostatic pressure which causes cracks, bowed walls and more.
ABT Foundation Solutions, Inc. has been helping homeowners address foundation issues for decades. We know the northern and northeastern Wisconsin area, the soil and what makes foundations settle. And if we know what makes them settle, we know how to fix the problem, then repair the damage. Call ABT today for an estimate.
Some common solutions to foundation settlement problems include these types of piers. Keep in mind, there is a huge difference in the application of these two piering systems. But both are vibration free, cost effective, long lasting, approved by engineers and inspectors nationwide and have over 30 years of field testing to back up their claims of solving foundation settlement problems.
Push piers are also known as resistance piles, push piles, pipe or friction piers. These are pipes with open ends that are pushed into the ground in an effort to determine the best soil to hold up the foundation. Once the best type of soil is found, a hydraulic ram is used to insert the piers that are then anchored to the foundation. The weight of the structure becomes a resistance mass to push against, hence the term Push Pier. This type of solution is one of the most common solutions to foundation settlement problems. They can be hydraulically driven either under or next to the footing of your foundation, thus righting your foundation and solving the settlement problem. A push pier should not be used with broken foundation footings.
A helical pier is a square bar or pipe that has helices and looks alot like a post hole digger. A hydraulic motor turns the pipe causing it to screw into the ground either vertically or at an angle as required. The stiffer and denser the soil is, the greater the load bearing capacity. It has the unique characteristic of having the same capacity in compression (vertical load) as well as in a tension (tieback in wall) capacity.