Concrete foundation engineers


Old 04-22-17, 06:06 AM
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Concrete foundation engineers

I have a concrete foundation located in Willis Texas. I have insurance that covers Foundation through **********. I have noticed misaligned doors that will not close and cracks throughout the walls and ceilings in the home over the past several months. I called the insurance company they sent out a plumber to run a camera through my sewer drains located in the foundation and he found 3 broken pipes and the water has been leaking into the soil and is causing the foundation to heave in many areas of the foundation. Every Foundation company I have talked to has recommended fixing the pipe, releveling the foundation and putting in several piers to get the foundation from shifting. On the other hand the engineer that the insurance company sent out is saying we just need to fix the pipe and the foundation will go back exactly as it was before? Our fear is that if we tunnel under the house and fix the leak in the pipe what will keep the new pipes from breaking when the house begins to settle if we do not do any piers? The insurance company is willing to pay for any damages that the broken pipe caused. I have even had the adjuster out and they have already done the paperwork and issued me a check but every Foundation company I have come out is saying they do not want to do it without peers because the new pipe it's going to break when the house begins to settle and the dirt begins to dry out under the foundations. Has anyone dealt with this before and how do I argue this with the insurance company so that when they fix the foundation they will put Pierce? The insurance company says that they will go off of the engineer's report and if the engineer does not call for any peers then they will not included.

Last edited by Shadeladie; 04-22-17 at 09:25 AM. Reason: Company name removed
Old 04-22-17, 06:18 AM
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I would give insurance co. all estimates you have and show them they all say foundation repair necessary. Insurance co, trying to get out the cheapest way.
Old 04-22-17, 06:54 AM
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There's a time factor here as well. Maybe they discussed this, but if the pipes are repaired, floors are leveled, then (for the present) the house is back to functioning.

If they just fix the pipes how long do you have to live with the problems waiting for everything to go back to normal all by itself, 6 months, a year, more? Will their engineer put a time on it?

Personally, in my experience with floor leveling (not concrete) you can get things to move back in the direction you want but it takes significant effort to get them back to original. IMO not going to happen naturally.

Time for your own engineer, theirs is far from independent since they pay him.

PS, I'm not an engineer.
Old 04-22-17, 07:38 AM
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I don't know too much about it, but I agree with the piers. I would not want an engineer to tell me simply let it fix itself.

Do you have a drawing showing the slab elevations? It's a floor plan plotting all the varying heights in about 2' grids. Hopefully that was done.

You could also do a search for Grout Injection Contractors. Grout can be injected at high pressure and lift the house any way you want.
Old 04-22-17, 07:42 AM
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I've worked on a few houses where pilings were added to support the house but that was on soil that probably shouldn't have been built on in the first place. My non professional opinion would be to fix the plumbing and then relevel the slab with mud/grout jacking. I doubt the slab would relevel itself!
Old 04-22-17, 09:16 AM
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I have some basic experience with this in that I had my foundation issues corrected just last year. However, my issues were from poor soil foundation prior to the house slab poured. Its all gumbo/clay here & many homes have foundation issues because this type soil contracts & expands with wet/dry seasons etc.

The foundation aint going to fix itself. If the soil has been washed away.... its washed away. The slab sits on the soil for support. If the soil aint there, there is no support for the slab. The soil that is there aint going to reproduce more soil & lift the slab back level. Its not a lizard that's just going to grow a new tail.

In my opinion, you need to have the slab raised & supported with piers for support, then you need to repair the broken/damaged/leaking pipes. Again, since the soil has been washed away, there is no support. You need something (piers) to support the slab.

When I had my foundation repaired, I considered & talked with a company which uses foam, which is pumped underneath the slab to raise it. I do not recommend using this method. The foam is discharged under the slab & expands.... in my opinion, there is no way to accurately place the correct amount of foam. Once expanded, it can easily be too much or too little. a quarter inch here, a half inch there.... even an inch out of calculation & the house will be raised too high or not enough.
I am no foundation expert but the 4 foundation experts I talked to convinced me that foam is not the way to go.
I talked to two companies out of the Dallas area & settled on one of them that so far has been excellent to work with. ($8000 for 12 pins/piers).
Both of these use similar pier type techniques, yet different specifics.
My daughter oversee's 100+ rental properties for a company here in n/e Louisiana which has used this company on 30+ houses over several years & has been happy with the process they use.
To be clear, personally, I do NOT recommend using the foam application process for foundation repair with structures on a slab.
To sum up: level, shore up & secure the slab foundation with jacks & piers, then repair the water leaks.

I hope this helps......

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