Fortunately, pier and beam foundation repair is typically pretty easy, fast and affordable. This doesn’t mean that it’s a good DIY project for most homeowners, however. To ensure a long-lasting solution, you have to have some experience, plus you need specialized equipment to get the job done right.
Even though it might be tempting to attempt a DIY project, but let’s be honest about one thing: house leveling with low-quality block piers and jacks simply doesn’t provide a stable foundation for your home. The issue will reappear much more quickly than you probably think; and you’ll be back at square one all over again.
Here’s an entertaining, short video of guy attempting a “quick-fix” on his house; while at the same time, cooking his dinner!
At Foundation Repair Pros, we have seen just about everything over our many years of experience. Since we are industry leading foundation repair experts here in San Antonio, we know exactly what goes into determining how and where the post and beam foundation is failing. We also know the most economical yet effective solutions to these issues.
What are the Symptoms of Pier and Beam Foundation Failure?
There are actually quite a few clues that show that your home’s foundation has some issues. Your foundation is designed to fully support the entire weight of your home and to transfer and distribute that weight evenly throughout the piers, beams and bedrock or its equivalent. Here are some of the more common clues that you can look for:
-Issues with your wooden floors, such as sinking, sagging, softness or bounciness
-Floors that are starting to bow
-Gaps that can be found between the interior walls and the floor
-Cracks that can be found in the sheetrock walls in the interior of your home
-Door frames that are out of level or that won’t shut or stick
-The presence of mold, fungus, termites or wood rot
-Compression of the joists in the floor
-Shimming between the beams and piers, such as if repair has already been attempted
Although it isn’t necessarily a bad thing if there is the presence of shimming in your home, it does depend on the material that was used. Some shadier contractors or do-it-yourself previous homeowners use pieces of sheetrock, scrap wood, soft wood or even cardboard, but these are obviously not the appropriate materials to use when repairing the foundation of a house.
What are the Two Main Causes of Pier and Beam Structural Issues?
Since dirt crawl spaces are damp and dark, they serve as magnets for un-pleasantries like termites, mold, fungus and more. These vented crawl spaces can also become incredibly humid, especially during the summer. Plumbing leaks, leaks in your HVAC duct work and other similar issues can also cause excess moisture vapor. Once this excess moisture is present, however, it can become a breeding ground for all of these problems and more. This can dramatically weaken the piers, joists and girders.
2. Lack of Correct Design for Pier and Beam Locations
Proper placement of the columns and is a crucial part of a pier and beam installation that is designed to last. In many homes, especially those that are older, we often see piers that are spaced way too far apart. This can cause the girders and beams to become overworked and overstressed, which can cause sags and even significant cracks. Undersized joists and girders (small width) can also cause this problem. If your home has a second story, this problem can be even more serious due to excess weight and pressure on your home.
Fixing Your Pier and Beam Foundation
We offer multiple solutions to fix your foundation-related problems. Our solutions are the most cost-effective available and are designed to stand strong through the test of time. Here are a few options that we might suggest for repairing your issues:
–The correction of all water-related issues, such as drainage problems and leaks
-The installation of new piers with a concrete pad base and supports of either block or steel.
-Leveling of girders and joists with the use of heavy-duty SmartJacks
-Solving mold-related issues, then “sistering” fresh lumber as a means of repairing damaged joists and girders
–Using either wood or steel I-beams as a means of retrofitting beams that are broken or rotten
-Using strong steel shims for re-shimming
-Dehumidifying the crawl space area
The extent of the foundation damage to your home, the causes of your foundation-related issues and your budget will have an impact on the solution that we choose for you. We will use our expertise to choose a customized solution that is perfect for your needs. Luckily, the costs that are associated with repairing a pier and beam foundation is generally much more affordable than what homeowners with slab foundations have to pay; this is due to the fact that access to the area is easier and there is a lower cost in materials and equipment.
We offer a free inspection with absolutely no obligation. At Foundation Repair Pros, we can help you determine the sources of your issues and will provide you with the most affordable, effective and permanent fixes out there. See our cost of foundation repair page.
Give us a call right now to set an appointment for your no-obligation, inspection and consultation!