What are Helical Piers?
A helical pier is almost like a very large screw. The piers generally have 4 straight sides like a square with helices (spiral shape) along the length of the pier. The helices act the same way the threads do in a screw – that is, they grip the surrounding structure or surface and give the pier strength, sturdiness, and stabilization. Helical piers are strong enough that they are generally used to stabilize structures in soil that would generally be unsuitable for building on. They are also used to retrofit, correct, and or support older foundations that have failed.
How do Helical Piers work?
Well, as mentioned above, the helices stabilize the pier in place, but that is only part of the picture. The point of the piers is to stabilize a failed foundation or a foundation that is on unsuitable soil. The piers accomplish both of these tasks in the same way. The piers drive down to strong, sturdy soil and use this strength to stabilize the foundation above.
What are some applications of Helical Piers?
In residential areas, foundations can shift, settle or otherwise fail. Often this can be seen in cracked walls, ceilings, or (obviously) foundations. Failed foundations can be dangerous so if you notice any of these types of cracks contact Helicon today for an assessment.
In commercial buildings, settled foundations can manifest the same as they do in residential buildings. However, in a commercial building, helical piers are somewhat common for new builds that require deeper support. Helical piers can be placed in very tight spaces and with a relatively minimal disruption of normal day-to-day activities.