Earth Tech Fact
Earth Tech is the only foundation stabilization company to use internally threaded connections for all of our underpinning projects.
Feel free to contact Earth Tech with questions related to your project 24 hours a day.
Steel Piering / Underpinning
As we consider sinkhole stabilization and foundation repair options, one critical fact must be remembered.. Grouting is sinkhole stabilization and Underpinning is foundation stabilization. A sinkhole condition cannot be stabilized by underpinning.
The Steel Pipe
This is the structural element that will support the foundation of your home. Earth Tech uses only the thickest wall pipe and the highest grade steel in the industry. And if that is not enough, we are also the ONLY stabilization company to use internally threaded joints between pipe sections. Since the underpinning process requires limited access equipment, pipe must be cut in small sections, usually 3 to 5 feet in length. Most companies simply use "pipe sleeves" to stack the pipe on top of each other. This results in loose fitting joints that are easily deflected as they pass through the subsurface soils and tend to allow the pipe to wander and drift off course. Sometimes becoming crooked and reducing their ability to support your foundation.
At Earth Tech, every section of our steel piering pipe is precision machined to provide a flush joint thread that will provide a connection that is as strong as the pipe itself. As a matter of fact, our internal quality control routinely tests our pipe connections to prove their ultimate strength. In addition to being the strongest connection in the industry, our flush joint threads do not increase the friction of the pipe as it passes through the soil. This insures that each pier is terminated on the solid bearing strata and that the pier will actually gain strength over time.
The Foundation Bracket
As a continuation of our commitment to provide you with the best underpinning system in the market, our foundation brackets are the biggest and the heaviest in the industry. What this means to you, is that they support a larger section of your foundation and they will last longer than any of our competitors. We are so confident in our steel piering system that we guaranty them...FOREVER.
Our foundation brackets cover a full 2 feet of your footer and weigh 50 pounds each!
Many companies offer "Lifetime warranties" but, you have to ask yourself..."what is the value of a lifetime warranty from a company that has only been in business for a short time?" Recently, one such company went out of business after the two owners were sentenced to prison!
At Earth Tech we offer a real warranty. Backed by one of the largest, most well respected stabilization companies in the business. We stake our reputation on every job and that is a reputation gained through thousands of projects performed over almost 20 years. Why risk your home to anything less than the best.
Hydraulically Advance Push Piers
This is the most common system in the industry. It has literally been used successfully on tens of thousands of structures around the world. It is cost effective and can be used for most foundation repair applications.
The concept of a push Pier is simple. You use the weight of the structure (your home) to push against and advance a steel pipe through the soils with a hydraulic cylinder. With this technique you can push the pipe through the soil until it would take more energy to advance than it would to life your house. (see underpinning animation)
Once the tip of the underpin pipe has reached a firm bearing strata (like limestone) the pier can be tested to confirm the bearing capacity.This is accomplished by using hydraulics to apply the load. Each pier is tested far beyond the actual load that is expected to carry as it supports your home. This will provide a safety factor for each underpin Pier.
Once each pier is driven and tested, many piers will be connected in a sequence to life and re-level your home (if directed by the engineer) and each pier will be permanently attached to your foundation.
Sometimes circumstances or soil conditions can require installation methods other than hydraulically advanced push Piers. This could be a very light structure such as a single story frame house or a very deep limestone with zones of clay or consolidated soils above. These types of conditions may cause the Engineer to require drilled Piers or pre-drilling.
When drilled Piers or pre-drilling is required, it is vitally important that the underpin Pier be installed directly against the wall of the structure. As a matter of fact, if the Pier is located too far away from the wall, it will have no value at all. This means it will not support your home.
Earth tech has designed and built unique drilling equipment that will place the underpin Pier exactly where it needs to be directly against the wall of the house. Not 2 inches away, not 6 inches away, but directly against it. Our drilling equipment also has the capacity to drill these Piers as deep as they need to be, sometimes over 100 feet.
Once the Pier is drilled to solid limestone, the drilling equipment is removed and a hydraulic testing/lifting mechanism is installed. Once the Pier is tested and the bearing capacity is confirmed, the foundation can be stabilized or lifted in accordance with the engineers direction. The Pier can then be permanently attached to the foundation.
Over the past several years there has been a concerted marketing effort to promote the use of injection Piers. The most common type has been a proprietary system that utilizes perforations (holes) drilled in the underpin pipe sections that were intended to inject grout into the various soil zones above the limestone. There has been much debate throughout the Geotechnical Engineering and Construction Community regarding the validity and effectiveness of this technique.
In 2004, Earth Tech performed an exhaustive field trial research project to test the performance of the perforated injection Pier technique. Our results were documented and proved that despite the number of holes drilled in the steel pipe, Grout would always come out the first set of perforations, thus injecting grout material into the most shallow soil zones.
Pursuant to these tests, Earth Tech devised an injection Pier that combined the proven effectiveness of a drilled Pier with the fundamental technique or modified compaction grouting. By drilling the underpin pipe to confirmed limestone and injecting grout material through the bottom of the pipe, we are able to offer an injection Pier that works.
Steel piering is the process of modifying an existing foundation by adding support. Earth Tech utilizes the state of the art hydraulic push pier system of providing reinforcement support to your home or structure.
About The Earth Tech Piering Process
Earth Tech uses proven new piering technologies that replace old-fashioned foundation reinforcement methods. These new technologies are used in the Earth Tech Piering Process, which is a system of steel piering, or steel pipes, placed deep underground to repair foundation settlement.
Also called Underpinning, our systems are engineer-designed and tested, and it have been used successfully throughout the United States for thousands of successful projects. The foundation piering process requires experience, superior materials and professional, knowledgeable staff … Earth Tech exceeds these requirements. Our company’s reputation rests our on many years of foundation stabilization experience, our service and our ability to get the job done right. In addition, our company sponsors a vigorous research and development program so that we can ensure we discover and use new technologies in the area of foundation stabilization.
How It Works
The Steel Piering Process is a safe, permanent and cost effective solution to stabilize your home. Earth Tech begins the Steel Piering Process by digging a hole to the bottom of your home’s footer. A specially engineered bracket is then permanently mounted to the footer. The next step involves setting the carbon steel pipes, or the piering, to the solid rock beneath your home. The carbon steel piers are designed to withstand the high amount of weight being supported on them. The settled portion of your home’s foundation is then lifted and stabilized at the same time. Each pier is then individually tested to ensure the stability of the supported area of your home.