If you have followed our blog, you know how unsafe and unsightly an uneven or sunken foundation can be. Flooding, invasive tree roots, plumbing leaks, poor construction, and even soil extraction are all common ways that a home or business’s foundation can become damaged. When a foundation is uneven or starting to sink, mudjacking is an effective way to quickly and easily make the necessary repairs to repair any settlement issues with the foundation of a structure. Mudjacking, also commonly referred to as slab jacking, concrete lifting, or slab leveling is a process that is often used when there are settlement issues with concrete, whether its for porches, decks, patios, garage floors, or more importantly, foundation. In addition, mudjacking is one of the most common foundation repairs that are made.
What Is Mudjacking?
When homes are build on concrete slabs, they are more susceptible to settlement and upheaval issues. Mudjacking is a great solution to fix foundation displacement. Through this process, the settling concrete slab is lifted from beneath. Of course, this is not a simple procedure that can be done by just anyone. However, if a home or business is still in the construction phase, the mudjacking process can be more cost-effective than repouring an entirely new concrete slab. If mudjacking is implemented on an already existing foundation, it can help prevent further and future structural damage from occurring. Mudjacking has two main applications for repairing foundations:
- Filling Voids. Foundation issues are usually due to settlement of the structure. When this happens, the settled sections of the foundation need to be leveled using push piers. Once installed, the push piers under the grade beam will cause the foundation to rise, creating a void under the concrete slab. Mudjacking is used to fill the void by drilling holes through them. Then a mixture of water, sand, soil, and cement is pumped beneath the settling slab so that is upright, stable, and in its original location
- Raising The Interior Floors. In some cases, the interior portion of a foundation slab can settle and become unlevel. When this happens, mudjacking is a common method used to get the inside floors back into their original, level positions. This process is still the same: drilling holes in the slab and using to mixture to fill the void and rise the slab back into position.
What Causes Foundation Settlement?
It is not uncommon for concrete slab foundations to suffer from settlement and upheaval over time. While there are plenty of factors that can cause foundation settlement, one of the most common causes that many home and business owner’s experience is due to the soil conditions. If a concrete slab foundation was poured in an area that requires the addition of loose soil. If soil is added to a lot and not adequately leveled and tamped, the soil beneath the slab is susceptible to settling, which can lead to cracking or breaking of the slab. Additionally, when soil expands and contracts due to moisture levels, it can end up having an impact on foundation and the slab.
In other cases, foundation settlement can be caused by invasive roots from large trees or plants that are planted too close to a home. As roots extend, they may end up growing beneath the concrete slab. This can be a huge concern, especially for older or historic homes. Sewer lines, specifically those still made of copper piping, may eventually develop leaks. These leaks can create moisture in the soil, attracting the growing roots of nearby trees. As the roots gain an sufficient supply of moisture and nutrients to support growth, they can eventually grow long and big enough to cause an upheaval in the slab.
What Are The Benefits of Mudjacking?
In addition to not having a settling or uneven foundation, there are plenty of benefits to mudjacking. Let’s take a look at why mudjacking is beneficial when a structure’s foundation is damaged.
Mudjacking is an affordable way to fix a damaged concrete foundation. Compared to pouring concrete or replacing the concrete slab — which would also require re-laying the homes plumbing systems and pipes — mudjacking usually is a fraction of the cost. Plus, it cost less than polyjacking, a similar repair technique that is often used.
2. Fixes The Problem Of Soil Voids
Unlike mudjacking, simply replacing or repouring the foundation slab will not solve the soil void issues. When these empty pockets of air exist, the foundation is still at risk of settlement. The mudjacking process fills soil voids, creating a much more safe, stable, and secure foundation that will last much longer.
3. Quick and Efficient
Unlike slab replacement, which can take weeks to complete, the mudjacking process is not long or drawn-out. While larger slabjacking jobs may take longer than some, most projects are finished in just a few hours.
4. No Waiting After Repair
When foundation slab replacement is complete, the surface usually cannot be used until the concrete is cured. This can take up to a month to complete, sometimes even more. However, with mudjacking, the concrete slab is ready for light use immediately following the process and repairs. Waiting a few hours or overnight after the process is complete, the surface will be ready for heavy weight.
5. No Mess
Tearing up and repouring a new concrete slab can be messy, not to mention the demolition work can take its toll on some of the surrounding landscaping. Unlike concrete replacement, slabjacking is a clean method for concrete foundation repairs. The tools and equipment will not cause any damage, and any spills of “fill” mixture can quickly be cleaned up.
Because the mixture of water, soil, sand, and concrete is made of completely natural materials, and the mudjacking process produces no waste and requires little work, it is one of the most environmentally-friendly techniques for foundation slab repair.
Mudjacking is a great way to repair foundations that have become damaged due to settlement or upheaval. The quick process and cost-effectiveness make mudjacking one of the most popular methods for foundation repairs. However, in order to properly repair a foundation using slabjacking, the proper equipment and products are needed.
At Magnum Piering, we specialize in manufacturing high-quality steel piling products for foundation repair applications. Our products make foundation repairs like mudjacking easier. For example, Magnum Slabjack Rams are perfect for lifting and temporarily supporting concrete slabs on grade beams or other light structures. It is used for precision lifting applications in combination with grout injection for long-term support. To learn more about how our products make foundation repair better, visit our site today!