Why It Pays to Invest in Pre-Construction Piers for Your Foundation
It’s no secret that homes in Oklahoma can struggle with foundational issues. Our state’s clay soil easily contracts and expands due to our rainy and dry seasons, causing a home’s foundation to shift. The right solutions for installing foundations, followed by regular inspections and rapid treatment of problems, can go a long way toward ensuring your home withstands Oklahoma’s weather without developing foundation problems that lessen your home’s value and safety.
At Edens Structural Solutions, we believe homeowners should enjoy beautiful, secure homes with strong, lasting foundations. And we believe in preventing slab issues before they arise as well as repairing them properly. That’s why we recommend using pre-construction piers as part of home construction. These special features give many advantages that lengthen the life of a home’s foundation.
Here’s a look at why these piers are so useful—and how you can know if your home is benefitting from them.
What Are Pre-Construction Piers?
Also called “helical piers” by those in the construction industry, pre-construction piers protect your foundation—so they are normally installed during a home’s initial building phase. They are driven through layers of shifting topsoil until they reach deeper, more stable layers of the ground.
The foundation is, in essence, laid atop these piers, which adds extra stability to the whole house and lessens the effects of shifting soil on the foundation. This, in turn, lessens damage over time.
Is It Worth Installing Pre-Construction Piers?
In a word — YES. Foundation experts across the country recommend that new builds include pre-construction piers before laying the foundation. This decreases the likelihood of severe foundation problems developing later on in the life of the house.
When and How Are Pre-Construction Piers Installed?
Piers add extra strength to a home’s structure and keep it stable. They are usually placed at key structural points, such as beneath load-bearing walls, at corners, and along exterior walls of a house. To ensure proper installation, piers are:
- Carefully planned to ensure they are placed exactly where needed
- Hydraulically torqued deeply into the ground
- Load tested to ensure they properly handle the home’s weight
- Integrated into the foundation with brackets, rebar, and concrete
Ideally, these piers will be installed at one of two times:
- Before the home’s foundation is laid
- Before the foundation for an addition or new home structure is laid
If you are building a custom home or are designing a build-out or other new structure to expand your home, installing piers before installing the foundation can pay off in the long run by protecting your home from structural damage. Your home will retain its value more easily.
What Is the Cost of Installation?
As with any other home construction or home improvement project, the actual cost of installing pre-construction piers will depend on the unique aspects of your home, such as:
- Size of home and planned footprint
- Placement of piers in relation to gas lines, electrical wires, and other existing structures
- Complexity of engineering involved, such as whether the home is being laid on flat ground or into a steep slope
To help avoid unanticipated costs and make the most of your budget, invest in partnering with a foundation company that will:
- Plan ahead with you to be sure all the details are right before you begin
- Provide a complete estimate, including timelines, materials, and other details
- Warranty their work, so you can have peace of mind in the quality they provide
Can These Piers Be Added to an Existing Foundation?
Though pre-construction piers are normally installed before a new foundation is laid, it is possible to insert them after construction—underneath light structures such as a small front porch.
We can also add support to an existing foundation to shore it up, using drill and drop pipe piers or exterior steel piers.
Wondering what type of pier you need? Check out this quick video on the differences between piers and how they’re used.
How Do You Know If an Existing Home Has Good Pre-Construction Piers?
As with anything home-related, if you want to get a good understanding of its condition, talk with an expert and have a professional inspection and assessment.
At Edens Structural Solutions, our foundation inspectors make the process smooth and easy—giving you the information you need to decide:
- If your home is in good structural condition or in need of repair
- How serious any potential damage is, and detailed recommendations to fix it
- Whether a potential home purchase is a good buy for you or not
- What to do now to prevent foundation issues down the road
Prevent Foundation Damage with Smart Pier Solutions
Your home should be a secure, strong, beautiful oasis that you can relax in, without worrying about its structural condition. Whether you are building a new structure, want an inspection, or need structural repairs to prevent foundation damage from lessening the value of your home, Edens Structural Solutions is here to assist you.
We make our process simple—just talk with us, get a plan for repairs, and enjoy a foundation that performs as it is meant to. And it’s easy to get started. Contact us to get a free estimate today—and start the process of loving your home, from the foundation up.