As foundation repair experts serving Plano and the greater Dallas area, we frequently receive calls from homeowners concerned about problems with their pier and beam foundations. Many older homes in the area have Pier and beam foundations, requiring regular maintenance and repair. Pier and beam foundations support the weight of the structure on a series of concrete piers and wooden beams. Over time, these foundations can settle, become damaged by wood-destroying insects, or rot and decay.
Left unaddressed, issues with pier and beam foundations can lead to sloping floors, cracks in walls and foundations, doors and windows that stick or won’t close, and other structural damage. Our team of experienced Pier and Beam Repair in Plano Texas, specialists is adept at evaluating pier and beam foundations to determine necessary repairs and implementing solutions to stabilize and level structures, restoring safety and peace of mind.
What Is a Pier and Beam Foundation?
As foundation repair experts in Plano, Texas, we frequently receive calls to evaluate and repair pier and beam foundations. A pier and beam foundation, also known as a post and beam foundation, is a type of foundation commonly found in older homes.
Pier and beam foundations consist of large concrete piers (vertical support posts) set in the ground that elevate the wood beams. The wood beams then support the floor joists and the rest of the structure. This type of foundation allows for airflow underneath the home and makes plumbing and electrical work accessible. However, pier and beam foundations are prone to settlement, rot, and pest damage over time which can lead to noticeable cracks in walls, sloping or buckling floors, and doors that stick or won’t close.
To repair a pier and beam foundation, steel piers are often installed next to existing concrete piers using hydraulic jacks to lift and level the structure. The wood beams and any damaged piers are then replaced. We also treat the area for pests, install proper ventilation and moisture barriers, and in some cases add a concrete footing around the pier to prevent future movement. Pier and beam foundation repair, if done properly, can stabilize and support a home for many years to come.
Homeowners with pier and beam foundations should have their foundation evaluated by a professional foundation repair contractor once every 3-5 years to check for any signs of damage or movement to ensure the safety and stability of the structure. Early detection of foundation issues is critical to minimizing repair costs and avoiding further structural damage.
Common Problems With Pier and Beam Foundations
As professional foundation repair experts, we frequently encounter issues with pier and beam foundations in Plano homes. There are several common problems homeowners may face:
- Structural damage or deterioration. Over time, the wood piers and beams can rot, warp, or become infested with wood-destroying insects. This compromises the foundation’s stability and support. We can reinforce or replace damaged piers and beams to restore structural integrity.
- Soil settlement or erosion. If the soil under the foundation shifts or washes away, the piers and beams can become uneven or detached from the soil. We stabilize the soil using piers, pilings, or helical piers driven deep into the ground. We then level and reattach the foundation.
- Moisture damage. Excessive moisture from poor drainage, plumbing leaks, or flooding can damage the wood and attract pests. We recommend installing a vapor barrier, improving drainage, and performing necessary repairs to eliminate moisture issues. We may also need to replace water-damaged elements.
- Sagging floors. Uneven settlement of the soil or foundation can lead to sloping, slanting, or sagging floors in the home. By leveling and stabilizing the foundation, we are able to lift and re-level the floors to a uniform, even plane.
At FCS Foundation and Concrete Services, we have the experience, equipment, and expertise to evaluate pier and beam foundation issues and perform necessary repairs to restore stability, prevent further damage, and maintain the structural integrity of your Plano home.
Signs You May Need Pier and Beam Repair or Replacement
If your home has noticeable cracks in the walls or ceilings, especially over windows and doors, it could indicate damage to your pier and beam foundation. The beams supporting the structure have likely started to weaken or settle unevenly, causing the home to shift. It’s best to have a structural engineer evaluate the damage to determine if piers need to be reinforced or replaced to stabilize the foundation.
Leaning or Buckling Floors
Uneven, sloping or buckling floors indicate that your pier and beam foundation may need repair or replacement. The piers supporting the floor joists have settled at different rates, causing the floor to become unleveled. In severe cases, the floor can actually start caving in. These issues need to be addressed promptly by a foundation repair contractor to prevent further structural damage.
Doors or Windows Sticking or Not Closing Properly
Doors and windows that suddenly stick, won’t close properly or latch are a clue that there could be an issue with your pier and beam foundation. As the foundation settles and shifts, it can move the door and window frames out of square, preventing them from functioning as intended. While stuck or improperly closing doors and windows themselves may seem like a minor issue, they indicate that structural damage is likely present and worsening over time without proper foundation repair.
In summary, if you notice cracks in walls and ceilings, sloping or buckling floors, or doors and windows that stick or won’t close properly, it’s best to have your pier and beam foundation evaluated by a structural engineer as soon as possible. They can determine if and what type of foundation repair or replacement is needed to stabilize your home’s structure. It’s not worth the risk to ignore these warning signs, as further foundation damage can have major consequences on the integrity of your home.
Choosing a Contractor for Pier and Beam Repair in Plano
As experts in pier and beam foundation repair, we know how important it is to choose a reputable contractor for your project. There are several factors to consider when selecting a company to repair or replace the piers and beams supporting your home.
Experience and Expertise
Look for a contractor with extensive experience specifically repairing and replacing pier and beam foundations. They should be experts in foundation leveling, structural reinforcement, and other techniques required for pier and beam repair. An established company that has served your local community for many years is ideal.
Proper Licensing and Insurance
Make sure any contractor you consider is properly licensed and insured to perform foundation repair work in Plano, Texas. They should carry general liability insurance as well as workers’ compensation insurance for their employees. Ask for proof of licensing and insurance before allowing anyone to start work on your property.
References and Reviews
Ask the contractor for references from previous clients who have had similar work done. Check online reviews from sources like the Better Business Bureau, HomeAdvisor, and Google as well. Look for companies with a proven track record of quality work and high customer satisfaction.
Comprehensive Evaluations and Detailed Estimates
The contractor should thoroughly evaluate the current condition of your foundation to determine appropriate repairs. They should provide a written estimate that details all recommended work before starting the project. Estimates should include specifications for materials and a timeline for completion.
Warranties and Guarantees
Reputable contractors will provide warranties and guarantees on both labor and materials. Make sure any estimates or contracts specify warranty terms to ensure your investment is protected. Common warranty periods are 1-5 years for labor and 10-25 years for foundation piers and beams.
By choosing a contractor that meets these standards, you can have confidence in their ability to properly repair or replace the piers and beams supporting your Plano home. Your foundation will be stabilized and secure for years to come.
In conclusion, if your pier and beam foundation in Plano, Texas shows signs of damage or deterioration, it’s critical to address the issues promptly. As structural damage progresses, the costs and complexity of repairs increase exponentially. By choosing a reputable contractor with extensive experience repairing pier and beam foundations, you can rest assured your home will remain stable and secure for generations to come.
At ABC Foundation Repair, our team of experts has been serving Plano homeowners for over 30 years with quality pier and beam repairs backed by our lifetime warranty. Contact us today for a free structural evaluation and estimate. We look forward to helping you protect your most valuable investment.