FOUNDATION REPAIR QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS FOR PROPERTY MANAGERS
When in the selection process for a foundation repair company, it’s not only important to consider the products and the methods that are being used, but also the foundation repair company itself. Here at Ram Jack, we’ve been full-service for over 30 years using the best products and the best methods on the market.
We deliver the highest quality products to the end user, ensuring that they meet or exceed building codes. Everything we do here at Ram Jack is focused on quality to ensure that we can protect your most valuable asset, your property. Ram Jack actually started as a small company in Ada, Oklahoma. Since then, Ram Jack has expanded to over 60 locations from coast to coast and even a few international locations.
At Ram Jack, we’re often asked to do a preliminary budget on large properties, and we like to streamline that by sending out a qualified commercial consultant. They’ll come out. They’ll do a visual inspection. They’ll collect preliminary data and offer you with one of three routes. Number one, the damage that we’ve observed is extensive, and we recommend that you get a structural engineer involved. Number two, we’re going to give you a structural evaluation and a repair plan to go along with it, or number three, we’re going to verify that it’s only cosmetic damage and recommend that you monitor those cracks to make sure that they don’t become any worse. When it’s decided to move beyond the preliminary budget phase, Ram Jack is prepared to send out a commercial consultant to do a personalized study of your property. That personalized study includes full-scale drawings, elevations, photos, a repair plan, and recommendations for any ancillary work that needs to be completed. In order to stay in touch with our customer base, Ram Jack is a proud participant in the National Foundational Repair Association, as well as local and state department associations.
The Ram Jack foundation repair method requires minimal disturbance to the landscape and the surrounding area. We also focus on ensuring that your tenants are not disturbed by our work in progress. Because causes of foundation failure can be so greatly varied, it takes a full seminar by our commercial division to educate people who are involved in the maintenance of a property to actually identify what’s going on and the measures that can be taken to prevent that damage.
I get asked this question a lot: so how deep is far enough? A lot of people like to say, “Well, is it going to go to bedrock?” Well, we don’t know if it’s going to go to bedrock. Some places that’s only 5 or 6 feet, some places that’s several hundred or even 1,000 feet under the surface. The key to depth is getting beyond the zone of influence, and that’s the part of the soil up towards the surface that expands and contracts or changes with seasonal cycles, so during a drought, it’s dry, during a wet cycle, it’s wet. The key is to get beyond that to a load bearing strata that will support the weight of the structure. Now, that could be 10 feet, that could be 50 feet, that could be 100 feet. All of our piles or all of our systems are verified for that capacity upon installation.
So, at Ram Jack, we have two different primary systems. The first system that Ram Jack was founded on is a driven pile system. That utilizes the weight of the structure to press a two and seven-eighths inch steel pile into the ground until it meets resistances, and then the structure can be ether lifted or supported from there. The other system is a helical pile system. Helical piles are nearly endless in their applications. They can be used in the same situations as a driven pile to repair existing structures. They can be used in new construction, and they can also be used in lightweight applications, such as porches, signposts, guideline wires, light posts, street signs, you name it. The Ram Jack steel pile method is backed by a limited lifetime warranty. Here at Ram Jack, we know that that warranty is only as good as the company. We’ve been here for 30 years, and we’re still expanding across the map, so we’re here to stay.