There are two main types of foundations that a home or building may be built on: slab or pier and beam. With pier and beam foundations, the foundation is elevated slightly off the ground, with the piers being used to provide stability and the beams helping to distribute the building’s weight evenly. Like with any foundation, however, it can fail and cause you to need pier & beam foundation repair.
Advantages of Pier and Beam
Besides being a much cheaper option, it can help provide greater stability to your home by allowing the weight to be distributed more evenly among the various piers and beams. Because the piers and beams will lift you home roughly 18 inches from the ground, you will have a crawlspace.
This can make plumbing and pier & beam foundation repair work much easier. Another advantage to keep in mind is the fact that your floors will not be as rigid as they would be with a slab foundation. This means that your body will have less shock to absorb making moving through your home easier on your joints.
Identifying Pier and Beam Issues
Like with any sort of foundation, there are some clear signs that will indicate the need for a pier & beam foundation repair. The most obvious signs will be floors that are sinking, sagging, or starting to bow. You may also notice cracks beginning to form on the interior walls of your home, or that the door frames are no longer level and therefore not closing properly.
You may find that there is shimming between the piers and beams of your foundation which, while not necessarily a bad thing, is a sign that a previous owner tried to fix the problem either themselves or by going to an unrepeatable company.
Causes of Pier and Beam Problems
The slab foundation repair process takes a One of the biggest causes of structural damage is moisture, which can occur in crawlspaces. This moisture creates the perfect breeding ground for things such as termites, fungus, and mold, which can all damage the piers and beams of your foundation.
Another cause of pier and beam foundation problems is poor design. If piers were not placed in the proper locations, then your home’s load my not be distributed properly. This can lead to the foundation’s supports becoming stressed and lead to problems over time, which can harm your home’s structural integrity, especially if you have a multi-story home.
Pier & Beam Foundation Repair
Unfortunately, pier and beam foundations do not last forever. Over time, you can expect your foundation’s integrity to deteriorate, signifying a need for repairs. When this happens, the work team will get into the crawlspace—after shoring your home for safety—to replace the damaged, wooden parts of the foundation.
Always go with a certified and experienced company for your pier & beam foundation repair work. Inexperienced companies may simply try to add extra support to deteriorating wooden parts. Doing repairs this way can lead to your home’s load not being distributed properly, which can harm your home’s structural integrity.