The Advantages of Helical Piers
Helical piers are described as deep foundation underpinning elements, with the use of steel shafts together with helical flights. According to manuals, the shafts are made to bearing depth by twisting the shafts into the soil while the torque is monitored to an estimated pile capacity.
Helical pier technology is said to be well 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. The helical system is proved to be advantageous over other systems especially if the work involves existing buildings.
Equipments that are used in helical piers foundation are usually smaller, lighter and less specialized compared to the equipment used in deep foundations. In this case, the cost of moving in and moving out or mobilization is usually lesser than 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 also advantageous in the sense that they are installed vibration free because they are turned in with a torques motor similar to a wood screw that is turned into a piece of wood. Be aware that it is not wise to add structures on an existing structures close by.
The torque should be regularly monitored when contractors are installing helicals in each pier. The capacity of each pier is directly related to the torque rating, therefore the contractor will know at the end of each installation the load or capacity that a pier can support.
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. Since there are no spoils that are to be hauled away from the site, you save on the costs of removal and disposal.
Note that with the use of smaller installation equipment like the helical piers, there is a drastic elimination of noise, like no violent hammering or banging.
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. Instead of removing the present foundation that failed and dispose it in a landfill, the helical piers are used over the present foundation, thereby creating a deep foundation system plus contributes to a green environment.
A word of advice, it is better to check structural engineer or repair foundation service to see which job is the right one for your project, especially each project could be different with various factors that will have an effect on the construction.