Straight Line Construction has successfully installed helical piers on thousands of projects throughout Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, California, and Wyoming. Straight Line Construction utilizes Ram Jack Helical Piers which carry a current International Code Council (ICC) ESR certification.
What are Helical Piers?
Helical piers, sometimes also called helical piles, helical anchors, or screw piles are deep foundation elements that generally consist of a steel shaft with single or multiple helical bearing plates. A wide variety of connection hardware is available for helical piers. Standard new construction brackets with bearing plates are commonly used for new foundations to transfer loads from the foundation to the pier. Steel Guide Sleeve and underpinning brackets are also used for remedial applications to transfer loads from existing foundations and to provide additional foundation support.
How are helical piles installed?
Helical piers are installed with hydraulic torque heads. The torque heads may be mounted on a variety of equipment including excavators, skid loaders, mini-excavators, hand carts, or custom man-portable frames designed to operate in very limited access conditions. The lead section of the pier with the helical bearing plates is attached to the torque head and the pier is advanced by rotating the pier with the torque head while applying downward pressure (crowd). Once the lead section is advanced, additional shaft extensions are attached (either bolt together or screw together piers are available) and the pier is advanced until the required installation torque is achieved. The pier top is then cut off to the desired elevation.
What benefits can helical piers provide on my projects?
Helical piers can be used for new construction applications or for remedial repair work where settlement and damage has occurred or where additional load capacity is required. Typical allowable capacities for new construction helical piers range from about 15 to 75 kips (30 to 150 kips ultimate with a Factor of Safety of 2). Larger sizes and higher capacities are also available. Helical piers can provide positive load transfer from new or existing foundations to suitable bearing strata. Helical piers are particularly well suited in areas where softer or looser soils overlie a stiffer or denser bearing layer. Battered helical piers can be used to provide additional lateral support where needed. Hydraulic jacks can also be used in conjunction with underpinning brackets to raise existing foundations in remedial applications after the piers have been installed.
In what applications can helical piers be used?
Helical piers can be utilized in a variety of applications including:
Construction of new foundations where softer soils are present near foundation bearing elevations or where additional load capacity is desired
Remedial repairs of existing foundations
To raise foundations that have settled
As tie-backs to provide lateral resistance for retaining walls
What advantages do helical piers provide?
Some of the advantages of helical piers include:
Relatively economical compared to many deep foundation systems
No drill spoils are created, this is particularly beneficial where contaminated soils are present
All elements of the helical piers are made from steel, there is no need to wait for concrete to cure before loading the piers