Pier and Beam Foundation
Double-walled steel pilings, crawlspace ventilation, surface drain
This project was a fully-occupied, six building, three-story multi-family apartment complex with a unique drainage problem that proved to be the underlying cause of all their foundation problems. Beyond the foundation repair itself, preventative solutions were implemented to address the drainage issue, thus ensuring that the issue did not repeat itself in a couple of years.
The property owner reached out to us due to tenant complaints of warping floors, musty smells, plumbing failures, and mold. Upon initial evaluation, it was determined that the underlying cause was surface water drainage from rain that resulted in both erosion and shifting of the soil beneath the foundation, as well as pooling of excess water. As this property was situated on a hillside, rainwater was flowing directly against the foundation, instead of away from it.
We leveled the foundation with the installation of over 100 double-walled steel pilings, removed all damaged lumber, and replaced all necessary beams and joists. We then installed a surface drain to redirect water away from the foundation, preventing the soil from becoming saturated in the future. We installed vent fans in the crawl space to remove existing moisture and keep the area beneath the foundation dry. These two steps were key to preventing future foundation failures due to rain – if we had just repaired the foundation and lumber, this property’s foundation would have likely failed again in just a couple of years. As all our work was done underneath the structure, no tenants had to be relocated for this job. This project, which encompassed six separate buildings – each done one at a time – took sixty days. We finished 11 days ahead of schedule.