Foundation Plan, Pier Spacing & Depth

Old 10-28-07, 12:33 PM
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Foundation Plan, Pier Spacing & Depth

I'm having a new home built and doing the contracting myself. Location is North of Dallas; more closely it's directly East of Allen, TX on the very large just of land that sticks out into Lake Lavon.

I plan on doing a post-tension slab on piers. I'm finding several different inputs concerning the "foundation plan" with reference to the piers. The architect and some other advisors convinced me that the foundation contractor determines how many piers, including spacing, location and depth, based on soil sampling. Yet others say otherwise. Some say I need to have cores drilled to determine this, others say a simple soil analysis is sufficient.

Obviously the piers should be around the perimiter and under load-bearing walls. Are others required (I have a very large and open great room that is a combined kitchen, dining and family room which does not have any walls through it).

Are there any documents that tell the average bedrock depth in the area? Are there regulations or recommendations on spacing? If the bedrock is extremely deep then is there a point at which you say "this is deep enough to be sufficient to the task"?

Last, if a formal researched and analyzed plan is necessary and the foundation sub-contractor doesn't do that, how do you find someone who does do that?

Thanks for your help.
Old 10-28-07, 01:05 PM
Join Date: Mar 2005
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Foundation Plan, Pier Spacing & Depth

It sounds like you are trying to make all design and construction decisions yourself. If you go piecemeal, you are accepting all responsibility and the the contractors only have to do what you say and you will have to police all construction.

Since you said it was near a lake, you should have a soil or site analysis done. - That is an obvious requirement.

If this is adequate, a contractor can have the appropriate foundation designed and can build it. If it is not adequate, he will have additional work done and build it into the cost. You have already determined the best and obvious foundation system.

You need to listen to professional help with all the concerns you have based on what "others" say. You will need a professional set of plans that you cannot come up with, so deal with reputable contractors and with professionals (architect, engineers, soils/site evaluator).

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