A Mini-Guide to Concrete Companies and the Different Types of Foundations for Erecting Buildings
One of the primary things commercial and residential buildings have in common is the need for a strong concrete foundation. A strong foundation is necessary for a building to withstand the pressures and strains from extreme temperature changes and to prevent excessive amounts of moisture from entering cracks and fissures. Concrete foundations typically do well in the Iowa soils, but it takes experienced concrete companies in Dubuque to know how to build a strong, stable foundation that ensures the foundation will last and provide the stability required. There are several concrete companies that build and repair concrete foundations. Some of these companies only do commercial foundations, while other companies only do residential foundations and some companies do both. Foundation work includes a wide range of tasks, from leveling and installation to repairing cracks and fissures, so it is essential that you hire an experienced and knowledgeable concrete company.
Different Types of Foundations
There are different types of foundations and there are a number of different reasons why one type of foundation may be used as over another type, such as the type of soil. Some of the different types of foundations include:
- Crawl spaces are made with foundation walls and a poured footing. The crawlspace walls are designed to help support the walls and floors. In most situations where a crawl space is used, it provides easy access to utilities. It is important that a crawl space be adequately insulated in order to prevent the growth of mold as well as to help lower the energy costs inside the building.
- A slab foundation is typically less expensive than a basement; however, it does come with challenges. A slab foundation is started by the concrete companies in Dubuque digging a trench, gravel is then spread throughout the bottom of the trench and the concrete is then poured on top of the gravel. The concrete provides an extremely strong support for the building as well as its floors and walls. The primary challenge with a slab foundation is that unlike with a crawlspace, the electrical wiring, ductwork and/or plumbing is either run under or through the concrete slab. This makes it difficult to access the utilities, making it expensive when repairs are required.
- Another type of concrete foundation is known as a pier and beam. This method uses concrete pads and beams as a way to support the floors and walls of a building. Pier and beam is usually used when there are no other foundation options. It is common for concrete companies in Dubuque to consider other foundations first, because some buildings that have concrete beams may experience future problems, such as cracks in the brick veneer or the sheet rock and the supports for the pier and beam may sink or joints can be affected.
Cracks in a Foundation
One of the most common problems that concrete companies in Dubuque encounter is cracks in the foundation. This can be the result of a number of things, such as the building was constructed on collapsible sandy soil or expansive clay. If any of these conditions are combined with extreme moisture and/or poor drainage, the structure becomes unstable. One of the most common causes of unstable foundations, yet one of the most unnoticed, is due to large trees near the exterior of a building. As the roots expand, they often find their way under foundations, which typically leads to cracks and fissures. Another common cause of foundation damage is due to the lack of runoff ability from gutters and downspouts.
When searching for concrete companies in Dubuque to do your foundation work, there are several factors you should consider before hiring. It is important to ask about their experience with this particular type of work, that they are able to provide samples of previous work and that they provide a written estimate with a complete detailed description of what work they will do. It is also important that you only work with a concrete company that is licensed and insured.
If you are looking for an experienced, reliable and trustworthy concrete company, contact
Kelly Concrete Co, we will be happy to come out and provide you with an inspection and estimate.