The Risks of Hiring a Non-Reputable Contractor

 

The Risks of Hiring a Non-Reputable Contractor

The one thing that cannot be stressed enough is to always hire a reputable contractor. Without doing the proper research when it comes to searching for foundation and waterproofing contractors in your area, you could wind up spending additional time and money fixing problems that should have been fixed from the beginning. Below is the perfect example.

Work from a non-reputable contractor

Job Well Done by “Competitor”

We got a call from a home that went through a complete remodel and a few additions about two years ago. These homeowners were currently experiencing settlement problems in the middle of their home. When we visited their home for an inspection to see what the problem was, we found duct tape surrounding the concrete column supporting their foundation. Duct tape. What we figured was that during the jacking process, they started to have a bit of movement in the column when setting the 4×4 onto the “shims” (wood shims should never be utilized in structural repairs). Thus, in their infinite wisdom, decided to duct tape it together in order to keep it from moving. Because yes, duct tape is an engineered product. This “foundation repair contractor” refused to return any of the homeowner’s phone calls, even though they offered them a lifetime warranty.

“The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten.”

“It’s unwise to pay too much, but it’s worse to pay too little. When you pay too much, you lose a little money — that is all. When you pay too little, you sometimes lose everything, because the thing you bought was incapable of doing the thing it was bought to do. The common law of business balance prohibits paying a little and getting a lot — it can’t be done. If you deal with the lowest bidder, it is well to add something for the risk you run, and if you do that you will have enough to pay for something better.”

Tips When Hiring a Contractor

  •  “Cheap” is not always the best route. If the price sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
  • Contractors should be able to provide proof of training certifications from industry sources.
  • Do your research online to learn what the company’s reputation is. Look for as many reviews as you can.
  • Make sure the company can fully explain the foundation problem, solution, and process to you including what products they will be using.

Always Call the Professionals

Nichols/Grout Tech is the industry leading foundation repair, water management, and specialty grouting company in Birmingham, AL and throughout the Southeastern United States as well. Our team is compiled of hardworking, knowledgeable individuals who have the ability to help you find a solution for you and your business, no matter what the project size may be. If you are in need of a trustworthy, reputable foundation repair contractor, contact Nichols/Grout Tech today here. We are the foundation company that you can rely on. And a company that will never use duct tape to fix your foundation.

 

What Causes Water Problems in Alabama?

What Causes Water Problems in Alabama?

Water leaks into a basement or crawlspace through any opening it can find. This includes cracks in walls, floors, and the joints. Even the smallest openings water can get into when there is enough pressure built up. Water can even leak through the concrete itself. This is why basements and crawlspaces are notorious for being damp and humid.

Many people in Alabama experience water seepage in their basement. Why in Alabama? Alabama has shallow bedrock, seasonal high water tables, and massive clay subsoils. These circumstances cause a lot of basement and crawlspace water problems in Alabama homes. Sometimes the water issue is very apparent, sometimes it is not. This is why being knowledgeable of the signs is so important. Through knowing the signs of water issues you will be able to occasionally check your Alabama home and know right away if you need to contact the professionals. Check your basement or crawlspace for some of these signs:

  • Bowed walls
  • Foundation cracks
  • Water seepage
  • Water stains
  • Musty odors and mold

Water Problems AlabamaWaterproofing Solutions

Because Alabama basements and crawlspaces are prone to water damage, it is important to have a professional come and inspect your home and give you the solution to your wet basement or crawlspace repair needs. While many people think they can wait, or that they can fix it themselves, this is not the case when it comes to water issues. Not getting to the sole problem, or putting the issue off will only make matter worse, causing you more time and money in the long run. If you notice any of the signs above, contact a professional right away. The experts at Grout Tech can offer you several waterproofing solutions such as:

If your home is in need of a sealed waterproofing or water control system, you have come to the right place. The first step is to contact us. We will answer your questions and teach you about the sealed waterproofing solutions that will best fix your water problem. Your waterproofing contractor will give you a written proposal that details what can be done and the cost of the work. After you approve the proposal, we will seal your home against water quickly and permanently. Our team is compiled of hardworking, knowledgeable individuals who always have the customer as their number one priority. Our team ensures you quality service, a great warranty and the peace of mind in hiring the best.

Browse around this site and learn about the sealed waterproofing products and methods that can make your home safe and structurally sound. Whether you need a sump pump, interior waterproofing system or a sealed exterior water barrier, it is time to create a new living space within your home or a crawlspace free from moisture, humidity or standing water. Call Nichols / Grout Tech today to get started with your free quote.

How El Nino Affects Winter in Alabama

El Nino and Winter in Alabama

el nino winter in alabamaWhat is El Nino and what damage does it cause? El Nino is a periodic warming of the Pacific Ocean that sets off unstable weather patterns across the globe. Every time one develops in Alabama, cooler and wetter develop in the fall and winter months. The most serious El Nino weather pattern occurred in 1997, creating floods and more snowfall in well-populated areas of the country. If you live in Alabama, make sure your home is prepared for El Nino. Too much water can lead to excess water around the foundation and foundation walls, causing wall cracks and water damage. At Nichols / GroutTech, we offer foundation repair and waterproofing solutions to prevent floods and water disasters.

How to Protect Your Basement Against Floods in Alabama?

Because El Nino brings in a large amount of snow and water, it’s important to repair any cracks in the foundation walls to prevent snowmelt from seeping through. As the water pressures build up in the soil, it pushes against the foundation walls and causes them to bow.

el nino winter preparation in alabamaAt Nichols / GroutTech, we offer Rhino Carbon Fiber for wall support to stop the wall from moving. Rhino Carbon Fiber consists of strong carbon fiber that uses a galvanized bracket to connect to the base of the foundation and the framing of the home. With Rhino Carbon Fiber, repairs can be made from inside the basement without excavation. Other benefits include:

  • Consists of strong, durable carbon fiber that is stronger than steel
  • Cost effective solution
  • Fast, clean installation
  • No deterioration
  • No movement or shifting
  • Can be easily painted
  • Creates a smooth finish
  • Supports and stabilizes the foundation walls

Also, make sure you have a working sump pump. If you don’t have one, now is the time to buy one. Sump pumps will prevent water from entering your basement by collecting water and pumping it outside of the home. If your home is equipped with a sump pump, test it on a regular basis by pouring water into the basin to ensure it works properly. If not, contact Nichols / GroutTech, so we can inspect it and install a new one. The last thing you want is to have a malfunctioning sump pump right when you need it.

Because of El Nino, expect cooler and wetter winters in Alabama. Make sure your home is prepared by investing in Rhino Carbon Fiber and reliable sump pumps. Our foundation repair and waterproofing solutions will put an end to wet basements, foundation damage,  and damp crawlspaces in Alabama.

Common Birmingham, AL Foundation Problems

Common Foundation Problems in Birmingham, AL

Some of the most common foundation problems in Alabama are issues that cause your foundation to settle, sink, shift, and crack. Most of these issues occur when there is a lack of or an excess of moisture in the soil beneath your home. Other problems are caused by surface water, vegetation growth, and poor construction. Some of these foundation problems are:

  • Sinking Foundations: Usually caused by settlement of the soil under the home due to erosion, soil shrinkage, or poorly compacted soil.
  • Common Foundation Problems in Birmingham, ALSlab Cracks: Cracks can form in your slab due to how the concrete was mixed or due to settlement or shifting of the foundation with varying moisture in the soil.
  • Wall Cracks: Wall cracks are normally the result of settlement or shifting in the foundation, and basement wall cracks might also be caused by pooling water.
  • Sticking Windows and Doors: If your windows and doors are sticking, it could mean that your foundation has started to settle in spots, leaving them unsupported.
  • Bowing and Leaning Walls: Bowing or leaning walls in the basement indicates high soil pressure, caused by excess water in the soil, and this problem can also lead to wall cracks.
  • Sloped or Uneven Floors: The floor in your home may slope if the foundation settles, or if the support beams underneath rot due to basement/crawlspace water issues.

These are all some of the common foundation problems in Birmingham, Alabama homes. If you notice these problems forming due to the moisture variation in the soil under your home, contact us today.

Solutions for Common Birmingham, Alabama Foundation Problems

Here at Nichols/GroutTech, we provide all of the foundation repair solutions that you could need to fix the foundation problems in your home. Whether these problems are caused by a settling foundation or foundation cracks, we have the solutions that you need.

If your foundation has started to settle, Grout Tech offers a few different solutions to lift the concrete and support the sinking foundation. These solutions involve using an underpinning technique to install piers beneath the concrete. We use both helical piers, which screw into the ground, and steel push piers, which drive into the ground. These piers offer the support and the lift that the foundation needs to be restored to normal.Common Foundation Problems Solutions in Birmingham, Alabama

For shifting foundations and bowing basement walls, we use tieback techniques to pull the foundation into place. These devices are installed in the ground adjacent to the foundation wall and then attached to the concrete. The anchors we use are helical tiebacks, which work much like the helical piers discussed above, except they are installed in the ground horizontally. We can also use carbon fiber repair strips on the interior basement walls to keep them from bowing inward and cracking.

In addition to these foundation repair solutions, we offer slabjacking procedures to support your foundation and fill voids that may have formed underneath. Contact Nichols/GroutTech today for solutions to foundation problems in Birmingham, AL.

Alabama Foundation Repair Needs – Repair Common Problems

Foundation Repair in Alabama

Whether your home in Alabama has a foundation that is a basement, crawlspace or Foundation repair in Alabama by Nichols/GroutTechslab, they are all susceptible to foundation problems. Foundation problems in Alabama can stem a variety of reasons such as:

  • Poor construction at time of build
  • Shifting soil due to changes in the water content
  • The home’s weight bearing down on the foundation
  • Trees and bushes growing too close to the foundation, drinking up the water in the soil

When the foundation of a home starts to fail, problems will begin to appear throughout the home. Once a problem begins, it will only become worse as the home ages, causing complete foundation failure. Let the experts at Nichols/GroutTech come and give you a free inspection and offer you the best foundation repair in Alabama to get your foundation stabilized and keep it strong for many years to come.

Knowing some of the signs of a foundation problem is the first step in getting your repair done before more damage occurs throughout your home. Some of the things to look for are:

Basement:

  • Bowing or leaning walls
  • Wall cracks
  • Floor cracks
  • Stair step cracks in the brick

Crawlspace:

  • Leaning post supports
  • Bottom of posts are not resting firmly on the floor of the crawlspace
  • Wood rot
  • Puddles in crawlspace

Slab:

  • Wall cracks
  • Floor cracks

Some of the other signs to look for throughout your home that may indicate a foundation problem are:

  • Sticking doors and windows
  • Sloping floors
  • Leaning chimney
  • Garage column cracks
  • Porch and stoop problems
  • Ceiling cracks
  • Floor cracks

At the first sign of a foundation problem, let the professionals at Nichols/GroutTech come and inspect your Alabama home and offer you the best foundation repair in Alabama solutions.

Foundation Repair Solutions in Alabama

Nichols/GroutTech uses underpinning products such as helical piers and steel piers along with pressure grouting of soils to repair foundations.

Helical piers and steel piers are used for foundation repair by driving the piers deep into the earth through the unstable soil layers until they reach a solid soil layer. Then each pier is individually load tested and the entire weight of the structure is lifted onto the piers to level and stabilize the foundation.

Nichols/GroutTech also uses compaction/pressure grouting to strengthen weak soils. Our compaction grouting techniques are used for pre-construction site improvement, to stop foundation settlement, rectify sinkhole problems and lift and level slabs and foundations. Compaction/pressure grouting is the injection of a very stiff grout mixture that is pumped at very high pressure into specific areas in the soil to strengthen the weakened soil.

All of the products used for foundation repair in Alabama by Nichols/GroutTech are manufactured by Earth Contact Products (ECP), the leader in the manufacturing of foundation repair products in the industry.

Nichols/GroutTech was founded in 1981 and has established an outstanding reputation in Alabama. With the experience of our team and because we use only the best products in the industry, you can be assured that your foundation repair will be done right the first time and will keep your foundation strong for many years to come.

Don’t let a small foundation problem turn into a larger one. Let Nichols/GroutTech give you a free inspection and find the best foundation repair solution for your Alabama home. Contact us today.

 

 

Spring is the Time for Foundation Repairs in Alabama

It’s Time to Inspect your Alabama Foundation

Now that Spring is finally here, now is the time to look around your home and look for Signs of foundation failure in your Alabama homethe signs that your foundation may be in need of repair. The winter weather can cause the soil to expand beneath your foundation because more moisture is retained in the soil. This expanding soil pushes the foundation upward, causing it to heave. This along with the Spring rains ready to come, it is a good idea to make sure your foundation is safe. If you see any of the following signs of foundation failure, the professionals at Grout Tech can help get your foundation back to its original stability and keep it structurally sound for many years to come.

Signs to look for as you inspect your home are:

As a homeowner, protect your investment by making sure that if you see any of these signs, you call the professionals at Grout Tech to come and inspect your home and give you the best solution for your foundation repair needs in your Alabama home.

How Spring Rains can Affect your Birmingham, Al Home

The primary reason for foundation problems is the expansive nature of the soil in which your home and foundation sits on. This is especially true in the Birmingham, AL area. The moisture content, especially with the Spring rains, causes the soil to expand and your foundation to heave. Regardless of how well your home was constructed, this movement will affect your home’s foundation.

As the Spring rains will expand the soil, other areas underneath the foundation may be experiencing the lost of moisture due to several factors such as tree roots consuming the moisture from the soil, causing the soil to shrink in that area. So the soil beneath your foundation can shrink much faster in some areas causing the differential settlement in the home’s structure.

Signs of foundation settlement should always be monitored and if any of these signs are significant, a professional should be called in to inspect the foundation. The professionals at Grout Tech are experienced in knowing the difference between what signs are not significant and what signs indicate the need for foundation repair.

Solutions for Foundation Problems in Alabama

After your Alabama home has been inspected for foundation failure, and it is found that Solutions for foundation repair in Alabamarepair is needed, the professionals at Grout Tech has the experience and products to get the repair done and get your foundation structurally sound again.

Depending on what your repair needs are, Grout Tech has the solutions. These include:

Helical piers are excellent at resisting tension and are used to lift and stabilize the foundation of a structure. These helical piers are installed by drilling into the ground, far enough to reach stable soil. They are an excellent choice for foundation repair and stabilization when light structural loads, unstable rock basements or very deep load bearing layers are present. They are a good solution due to many factors such as:

  • Ease of installation
  • Little to no vibration
  • Immediate load transfer
  • Easily load tested
  • Installs below active soils
  • Can be installed in all whether
  • Little to no disturbance to job site

Steel piers are the most common foundation repair product used today. These are an excellent choice for structural foundation repairs on settling foundations. Steel push piers support and stabilize the structure’s load bearing walls by transferring the weight of the structure from weaker soils onto the steel piers after they have been driven deep to load bearing soils.

All of the products used by Grout Tech are the best in the industry. They are made by Earth Contact Products (ECP), the leader in the manufacturing of foundation repair products in the industry. Not all foundation products are made the same. When you contact the professionals at Grout Tech, you are getting experts with over 30 years of experience along with the best products made for foundation repair. We repair commercial, industrial, municipal, and residential repair needs.

Let Grout Tech inspect your Alabama home and give you the best solution for your foundation repair needs. Don’t hesitate, contact us today!

 

 

How to Pick a Foundation Repair Company

Alabama Foundation Specialist Reviews

The appearance of cracks on floors and walls in your are not only annoying, they can be a Alabama foundation specialist reviews, foundation contractor Alabamasign of foundation problems. Foundation problems can occur because of several different reasons. The changes that occur in the foundation soils that surround and support the foundation is the most common cause. If a foundation was built on weak soil, the foundation footings will sink into these soft soils. Often when a home is being built, placement of fill soils is common. If these fill soils are not properly compacted, this will result in foundation settlement. Extreme changes in climate and moisture content can also result in foundation damage. If there is too much moisture, it will soften the soil and will not be able to support the foundation. Too much moisture can be caused by the obvious, too much rain.But also having a high water table, poor drainage away from the foundation, or leaks in water lines can also be the reason for too much moisture surrounding your foundation.  Mature trees and bushes that grow close to your foundation can also be a cause for foundation settlement. The roots of these trees grow under the foundation and “drink” the moisture from beneath and this causes the soil to shrink causing settlement.

Selecting an Alabama foundation specialist that has a reputation for getting the job done correctly the first time and uses only the best products available, will give you peace of mind and save you money in the long run. Grout Tech is your Alabama foundation specialists with the reviews you are looking for.

 Foundation Contractor Alabama

If you think you have foundation settlement, you want to make sure you have the most experienced company that uses only the best products on the market for foundation repair. By choosing Grout Tech, you are getting both a company with over 30 years of experience and uses the best products on the market manufactured by Earth Contact Products (ECP). By using an experienced foundation contractor in Alabama, you can be assured
Alabama foundation specialist reviews, foundation contractor Alabamathat the job will only last as long as needed, eliminating a long disruption of your home and life.

When choosing a foundation contractor in Alabama it’s important to choose one that can provide a number of solutions and be able to deal with any a number of unique situations. Grout Tech has the experience and products such as helical anchors, helical tiebackshelical piers and piles, and micro piles and steel piers.

What is unique about Grout Tech is we also offer specialty grouting services. Our pressure grouting uses a stiff grout mixture that is pumped at very high pressure into specific areas in the soil. The expanding globular mass of grout then compacts the soil around each point of discharge.

Remember that by choosing the foundation contractor in Alabama with knowledge and experience and uses only the best product available, you will be assured that the job is done right the first time. Contact our foundation repair team today and request an estimate. Grout Tech is the company with the best Alabama specialist reviews in the area.

 

 

 

Alabama Foundation Repair Professionals

Foundation Repair Professionals in Alabama

Water and soil movement can pose a serious threat to the foundation and well being of your home.  Soil expands in hot and wet seasons and contracts in dry cold ones.  Knowing the warning signs of foundation failure are a necessity if you want to catch the problem before it becomes to serious.  Water can put hydrostatic pressure on basement and foundation walls.  This pressure could lead to cracking, bowing, or leaning.  If you notice signs of this happening you will want to contact a professional immediately.  The longer you wait, the more expensive the problem will become.  Not to mention, more damage could be done to your home.  Call Grout Tech and find out what we can do for you.

Our company was founded in 1981 and has been providing top of the line foundation repair services to our customers all over the Alabama area.  We serve both the commercial, residential, industrial, and municipal, markets.  We have the ability and know-how to give you the best results you could ask for.Alabama Foundation Repair Experts

We only hire the most qualified and professional employees in the industry. Our staff will have your home in tip top shape before you know it. We use only the top of the line products as well. All of our underpinning solutions are provided by Earth Contact Products. These products have been load tested and proven to last.  Foundation repair is nothing to joke about, the safety of your home and family could be at stake.  Safety is our number one priority. We want to guarantee that you will feel comfortable and remain safe in the structure you live in.

We offer foundation repair and basement waterproofing to the Alabama, Florida, Mississippi area.  We install interior and exterior drainage systems, sump pumps and vapor barriers.  We can fix up your foundation and renew the strength of your home.  For all of your foundation repair and basement waterproofing needs.  Contact Grout Tech today! Find out what we can do for you, you won’t be disappointed.