Keep These Things in Mind Before Using Screw Piles for Your Foundation

Posted on: 31 December 2018

Screw piles go by many names in the industrial and manufacturing market. Some people call them screw anchors or helical anchors, while others refer to them as helical piles. Either way, they save the same purpose when you use them in construction projects. They provide good anchorage and support for buildings by allowing you to come up with deep, tailor-made foundations. Additionally, screw piles have an added advantage over other methods of building or reinforcing foundations. Builders can install them within short periods, unlike instances where they use other methods. If you want to use screw piles for your building's foundation, here are the things you need to keep in mind:

The Weight of the Building

Practically, you cannot measure the weight of a building. The term weight points to the load that the sections and materials of the building exert on the foundation as they rest over it. The load determines the length and size of the screw piles that you use for your foundation. Light structures used for storage have lesser load implications compared to a large room with a thick floor used as a gym. Heavier buildings need long, thick screw piles for high load-bearing capacity and better anchoring. 

Horizontal Forces

Often, homeowners only think about the forces weighing in on their foundations from above (vertically). Most people don't think about the impact of horizontal forces hitting against the walls from the side. More importantly, they forget what such forces can do to their foundations. Strong winds and breezes from water bodies push against walls standing in their way. If your foundation is not strong enough, you will start to witness cracks at the point where the walls meet the foundation (the floor). Consider measuring the strength of winds in your area with a weather specialist who will share his or her data with your builders. They can change the length of the piles from fifty centimetres to one hundred centimetres to make the foundation resistant to damage by winds.

Type of Soil in Your Area 

Screw piles rely on the surrounding soil strata for anchoring and supporting the building load. Sadly, not all soils offer the best support for screw piles. Medium-gravel soils and weathered rocks with a maximum of one and half-inch grains are preferable over other soil types. Large gravel and deposits of cobble inhibit the penetration of the helical piles, which limits the amount of support they can derive from the soil.