What Is A Pier And Beam Foundation?
Pier and beam foundations are deep foundations that have been used for a long time. Our forefathers utilized them to support homes, barns, sheds, businesses, and other light structures. Pier and Beam foundations are faster to construct, less expensive, and simpler than a full dug-out foundation and use fewer materials. They are also longer-lasting and more stable than building directly on the ground.
Pier and beam foundations are among the oldest forms of foundations, having been constructed before the 1960s. The home’s floor is elevated roughly 18 inches off the ground with this sort of foundation, supported by concrete piers or blocks. This area creates what is commonly referred to as a crawl space. The crawl space allowed easy access to the plumbing and electrical of the structure.
Pier and beam foundations were significantly more common in the 1960s than they are now. Because of their low cost and efficient design, contemporary concrete building designs are now used for the majority of homes today. However, in many regions of Texas, pier and beam foundations are required, particularly in locations prone to excessive flooding, seasonal wetness, and rainfall.
Advantages of Pier and Beam Foundation
A pier and beam foundation has various advantages, including easier access to plumbing and electrical systems beneath the structure, protection from flood waters, and cheaper energy expenditures in the hot summer due to better airflow beneath. Other various advantages are:
- Less expensive than most other foundations
- Relatively quick and easy to build
- A remote-access favorite as heavy equipment isn’t necessary
- Minimal disruption to the ground and vegetation
- Elevates the structure above uneven ground<
- Protects from termites, moisture, and flooding
- Provides a crawl space or open access for plumbing and electrical installation and repair
- Less ground vibration transfer
- Easy to connect additions and decks
- Can be constructed on most types of soil and rock formations, even underwater
Some disadvantages of this type of construction are:
- The crawl space or area under the structure needs to be ventilated to prevent moisture damage
- Unwelcome critters may take up residence in the open crawl space
- If too close to the ground, repairs are difficult
- Poorly constructed and leveled piers make floor construction difficult
- Floors may be springy if piers are poorly spaced
Pier and beam foundations, like nearly any other type of foundation, can develop issues over time, especially if they were not built properly. Those built on solid ground with proper maintenance and drainage, on the other hand, can last for generations. The primary structural concerns are pier cracking and settling.
Pier and beam foundations were and are commonly used to raise a building above uneven terrain to produce a level base. They are also used where the soil is physically unsound or where the earth is exposed to moisture or potential flooding on a seasonal basis.
If you are looking at a foundation for your home or building and might be interested in pier and beam construction. Done Right Foundation Repair is here to help. We work with people to find a foundation that will work best in their situations. Call today to set up a free no-obligation appointment.