How to Stabilize California Foundations
There are a lot of different methods that foundation stabilization companies use to stabilize California foundations. Many of these methods involve the installation of underpinning devices to lift the foundation and give it the support that it lacks. There are a lot of different underpinning devices to fit specific situations, but they all have a few things in common. First, all of these devices are installed beneath the sinking or shifting foundation. Second, all of them work a bit like stilts installed underground to lift and provide stability for the settling foundation.
Our team offers several different kinds of piers to underpin your home no matter what type of foundation you have. One common type of pier is a steel push pier or resistance pier. This pier is great for deep foundations that have started to settle due to soil movement. They use a hydraulic lift system to elevate the foundation once they have been installed underground in stable soils. We also offer helical piers, which work great to lift sagging foundations and provide long-term stability. These piers are screwed into the ground for extra strength. Other kinds of piers that we offer are slab piers, which are a good choice for concrete slab foundations, and long-lasting concrete piers.
Why California Homes Need Foundation Stabilization
Why does your home need to be stabilized in the first place? There are a lot of different things that can cause your foundation to become destabilized if you live in the Bay Area, California area. Just a few of these causes of destabilization include:
- Soil Saturation: The more rain the area gets and the more the water table rises, the more water that the soil around your home will absorb. Because the saturated soil swells and creates pressure in the ground, it can push the foundation out of place and cause the entire concrete structure to shift and move.
- Foundation Deterioration: Over time, all concrete starts to deteriorate. This deterioration can be sped up if the foundation is exposed to water in excessive amounts. As it deteriorates, your foundation will lose stability.
- Soil Shrinkage: This is the opposite problem to soil saturation. Soil that is not getting adequate water will shrink as it dries up. The shrinkage causes voids and holes to form in the ground. These spaces in the ground create a lack of support for the concrete, which in turn leads to foundation settlement and sinking.
- Poor Soil Compaction: Proper compaction of the soil under the foundation is essential at the time the foundation is laid. If the soil is not packed well enough, it will compact and settle on its own, taking the foundation down with it.
- Growing Trees and Shrubs: If there are large shrubs or trees growing too close to your home’s foundation, the roots of these plants can push on the concrete. This leads to foundation shifting and crack formation.
Signs that destabilization has occurred in your foundation include cracks in the foundation, walls, floors, or ceiling; bowing or leaning walls; sloping or uneven floors; sticking doors and windows; and obvious foundation sinking. If you see that your foundation has become unstable due to any of the causes listed above, call Bay Area Underpinning for a foundation stabilization solution.