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Subsiding property fully stabilised and repaired

Client: Private owner
Location: Gloucester
Approved Installer: Premiere Property Services
Reference No: CS155

Although only constructed in the late 1990's, this semi-detached two storey property was suffering from extensive cracking to the front and rear elevations, caused by subsidence of the gable end wall. it was built on clay soil with deep trench fill foundations but close by trees and a hedge had been allowed uncontrolled growth, causing the clay soil beneath the gable end to desiccate and shrink.

A proven and reliable means of stabilising the property was required, that would prevent further settlement, together with masonry repairs to the superstructure that would restore full structural integrity.

The Helifix solution

The problem trees and hedgerow were cut back or removed. A combination of Dixie micro-piles, to support the foundations, and the Helibeam System, to secure the damaged masonry, were specified.

  • The 11 x 6m long micro-piles were rapidly installed, to the specified depth and torque, using lightweight equipment. They required minimal excavations, with no spoil removal.
  • Adjustable 'L' shaped brackets were fitted to the piles and placed under the foundations. These were jacked up to the required safe working load, with the piles then fully supporting the building loads.
  • Some 80m of stainless steel HeliBars were used to form a deep masonry beam around the entire exterior, just above the ground floor windows and doors, which stabilised the masonry, stitched cracks and spread the building loads. Other cracks were stitched with individual HeliBars bonded into mortar beds with HeliBond cementitious grout while the arch lintels were secured with fully grouted CemTies.
  • Compressible Clayboard was installed between the piles, as specified by the engineer, as a precautionary anti-heave measure.

The combination of Dixie micro-piles and the Helibeam system provided a cost-effective, non-disruptive alternative to traditional underpinning, rapidly restoring full structural integrity.

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