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slab on grade leveling

Discussion in 'Residential Foundation Codes' started by BSSTG, Jul 10, 2012.

  1. BSSTG

    BSSTG Gold Member

    Nov 30, 2009
    Likes Received:
    Greetings one and all,

    I have looked at a lot of repairs over the years and have seen some houses really screwed up a time or 2. In our neck of the woods it is common practice to relevel slab on grade foundations with standard bell bottom piers or one of the proprietary systems involving some form of pressed piles. Typically in our area of the gulf coast we have good load bearing soil with a stable moisture content at about 5-7'. As a result, we typically get pretty good results from bell piers to a depth of about 8' IMO when done properly per eng. specs.

    About 20 years ago I went to Tx A&M for a weekend discussion on foundation installation, repairs, etc. What I got from the fellas up there that they all preferred the bell bottom piers over the pressed systems. Bear in mind that's been a few years back. Bottom line is how do folks deal with this and what's your preference? There sure have been a lot of pressed piles done in Tx the last 25 yrs or so.

    I might add that here in Tx. our soil has a really high PI and moves a lot with the varying weather conditions. We are looking at leveling our municipal court building which has been leveled once about 20 years ago. The deal is that it was done with exterior piers only and now at a minimum it needs some interior piers. A lot of movement is evident.

    Prices vary widely. The more expensive is the proprietary systems and I personlly don't think they are worth the added expense.


    thanks as always

  2. codeworks

    codeworks Gold Member

    Jun 12, 2011
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    i can't understand why this particular "industry" isn't regularted, like require licensing. i asked for an engineers report on the first foundation repair i inspected, and got looked like i had three heads. found out later, we look to see if the piers are driven ( can't see in to the ground, though) and that the top piles are there, and the steel shims are in place. i say engineer involvement, especially on courhouse. pre work grade check (shoot the perimeter of the structure with an instrument, then do it again aftre it's finished. require a report from the fdn repair guys on how many piles are driven at each location, depth and psi at stop.)
  3. Mark K

    Mark K Platinum Member

    May 12, 2010
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    In most parts of the country this work would require the involvement of a professional engineer or Architect. The building official would evaluate the submittal by the applicant based on the provisions in the building code. The building official visits the project to perform the inspections required by the code and reviews special inspection reports.

    If the applicant can show that the proposed design complies with the building code the preferences of the building official are not relevant.
  4. Builder Bob

    Builder Bob Sawhorse

    Oct 17, 2009
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    Local site conditions are going to regulate what works best for your area........Bell bottom piers may be the answer in one spot, while pressed piles may work in others ----- this is really an engineer area of responsibility - geotechnical conditions would dictate the best (cheapest) cost while providing longevity for the repairs.

    Otherwise, it is the same as saying a shotgun is the best answer to shooting at a target ---------

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