If you’re securing a new foundation or repairing an existing one in the Southeast, you’ll be looking at helical anchors to complete your project.
Helical anchors, often called screw anchors, are commonly used for underpinning and settlement arrestment; however, they can also be used for tiebacks, uplift anchors and new construction piles. The pile is constructed simply by screwing the anchor into competent load-bearing soil.
The pile capacity is a function of the installation torque achieved during installation. Helical anchors come in various shaft sizes and helix configurations, allowing for lots of options to meet the required specifications.
Advantages of Helical Anchors
The major advantages of helical anchors are speed of installation and the ability to load the pile immediately. Since there’s no need to wait for grout to cure, you can get back to work right away.
Another benefit of helical anchors is that they can be installed with relatively small equipment and in areas with very tight access. Also, there are no spoils left from the installed pile, making the installation process very clean compared with other pile types.
Helical anchors have their disadvantages, too. For starters, they cannot be installed into or through rock. Also, lateral stability or buckling can be a concern in certain soil conditions.
Types Of Helical Anchors
There are many types of helical anchors available for commercial and builder applications. The right anchor for your building will depend on the condition of the foundation and if any additions or stories will be added to the building.
Helical anchors are ideal for foundation repair when stable, load bearing soil resides deep below the surface. These anchors have either a round or square steel shaft with welded steel plates that are driven into the ground to a certain depth and attached to your existing foundation in order to provide foundation and building stability.
The term screw anchor is used interchangeably with helical anchor because it also contains a steel shaft with steel plates welded onto the shaft at various intervals. Screw anchors are screwed into the ground, which reduce the amount of displaced soil during the installation process.
Helical piers can be used for a variety of foundation repairs from whole building foundations to chimney, porch and stair foundations. They are used when stability from compression and tension forces are needed, and they can be combined with brackets for additional stability.
The terms helical piles and helical piers are used interchangeably. These foundation repair devices are used to repair all types of industrial and commercial foundations, and they can be ordered in a variety of styles — including driven and mini and micropiles.
The phrase screw pile is simply a generic term for any type of foundation anchor, pier or pile that is screwed into the ground versus being driven or pounded into the soil. Screw piles are used to stabilize chimney, porch, stair and building foundations of all sizes.
Helix Anchor Installation and Helical Pier Installation
Helix anchors and helical piers can be installed prior to pouring the foundation or when a building’s foundation has been damaged due to shifting soils and changing soil compositions, including settling and increased or decreased moisture composition.
Foundation anchors, piers and screws are either driven or screwed into the soil. Depending on the location, they may be attached to the existing foundation with either brackets or screws. Once completed, the foundation is secure and should resist further damage due to compression and tension.
To learn more about helical pier installation and helix anchor installation or to schedule an estimate, contact us today.