The Advantages of Helical Piers
Helical piers are described as deep foundation underpinning elements, with the use of steel shafts together with helical flights. By twisting the shafts into the soil with advanced bearing depth, the torque is also monitored to reach a pile capacity.
The technology of helical pier is over 100 years old. For construction and repair or renovation works, this system is considered to be a proven system. For foundation repairs where soil condition would need installation to be deep piles, this system is proven to be very effective solution. Especially if the work requires on existing buildings, helical piers would have competitive advantages over other systems.
Equipments that are used in helical piers foundation are usually smaller, lighter and less specialized compared to the equipment used in deep foundations. With these conditions, the cost of mobilization or the move in and move out, is generally lower compared to the other systems. These conditions allow contractors then to go in tight or confined areas in helical piles installation as compared to the larger equipment which cannot fit into the area.
Helical piers are turned in with a torque motor like a wood screw being turned into a piece of wood, and this makes helical piles vibration free when installed that gives it an advantage. Remember that it is not advisable to work on additional structure on neighboring properties with already existing structures.
The torque should be regularly monitored when contractors are installing helicals in each pier. The contractor usually would know at the end of the installation the load or capacity of each pier since the capacity of each pier is directly related to the torque rating.
Helical piers installation does not require curing after installation and they can immediately be loaded. Also, there is minimal excavation required for helical piers that are turned on or screwed in. Another advantage of helical piers is that you save on costs of removal and disposal because there are not spoils to be removed from the site.
There is not violent hammering or banging to install helical piers and this is a big advantage with regards to the reduction of noise.
Those existing foundations that are failing, can be solved using helical piers, and this is another very important advantage of helical piers, aside from being used in new constructions. Contractors also use the helical piers under the existing foundation, rather than remove and disposal it in a landfill, and when this is done, there is a deep foundation system that is created contributing to the green environment.
Several factors would affect your project, and so it is wise to ask the help of structural engineer to see which method would be best for your project.
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