Due to the pull of gravity that sticks us to the ground, we humans depend on the earth beneath our feet to support us and supply us with a solid place to stand. Usually, the ground is able to meet our expectations of holding us up as we move around, but when we ask more of it, sometimes the ground needs help rising to the challenge.
When we choose to complete tasks such as build buildings, construct roadways, lay parking lots, land planes, operate heavy vehicles, and accomplish a whole host of other activities, the soil upon which we intend to do these things may not be prepared for the work we want to do. The soil may not be strong enough due to the nature of its contents, as soils containing gravel, sand, silt, and clay often require an extra boost of strength in order to help us fulfill our duties. Loose granular types of soils are especially susceptible to the effects of gravity, while climate changes can cause clay type soils to sweep and shrink and thereby create movement. Additionally, organic matter buried in the soil decays over time and leave voids that make the soil unstable.
Furthermore, the environment in which the soil exists may also hinder the soil’s load bearing abilities. Particularly in Florida, the qualities of the soil can vary greatly across the state. Northern Florida is full of red, loamy soils and poorly drained, sandy soils, while Southern Florida has peat soils near the Everglades and shallow, limestone-influenced soils in the most southern regions. Of course, ground in Florida also regularly handles extreme amounts of water, whether from daily rain showers, frequent tropical storms, or permanent soggy swamps. Therefore, engineers and contractors throughout the state face a great number of problems as they try to create safe places for Florida residents to live, work, and travel, and it is for their benefit that Solid Foundations offers our soil stabilization services.
Soil Stabilization Benefits
The soil stabilization services of Solid Foundations help us live better on the land we love. Soil stabilization is the process of altering soils in order to improve physical properties such as strength and durability, and soil stabilization enhances soils in order to increase load-bearing capacities or to control the shrinking and swelling habits of the soils. Stabilizing the soil and repairing settled soil through chemical means can make the soil totally useable for certain projects without the need to excavate or disrupt normal operations and timelines. Sparing people the hassle of having to excavate can save them a significant amount of money, and soil stabilization provides many other money and time saving benefits as well. The benefits of soil stabilization include:
- Eliminated need to export unsuitable material and import new material
- Lowered soil permeability
- Higher resistance values
- Better soil compaction
- Reduced plasticity of the soil
- Reduced minimal thickness of the pavement
- All-weather access to and within project sites
Though it may alter nature, soil stabilization actually creates some positive environmental changes as well. Stabilized soils do not suffer the erosion that large amounts of run-off from storm water can cause, and this means that stabilized soils can now help to preserve soils, waterways, roads, animal habitats, and more.
Soil Stabilization Processes
In order to provide individuals, companies, and organizations with the stronger soils they need to complete critical construction projects and protect work they have already finished, Solid Foundations uses chemical grouts to fill in voids, fortify soils, and form sub grade grout barriers near roadways, dams, seawalls, tunnels, and underground vaults. Solid Foundations applies chemical grouts to the soil using two different methods: permeation grouting and compaction grouting.
- Permeation Grouting
Permeation grouting is the slow and regulated process of injecting polyurethane foam into the soil in order to penetrate the soil before expanding. Solid Foundations then adds measured amounts of a catalyst such as water to the soil diffused with the polyurethane foam in order to expand the foam and thereby enable it to glue the soil together. This action creates an impermeable mass that increases the load bearing capacity of the soil. At Solid Foundations, we employ Prime Resins’ polyurethane foams Prime Flex 910 and 920 in order to stabilize the soil through permeation grouting.
- Compaction Grouting
Compaction Grouting also involves the injection of polyurethane foam into the soil, but the foam used in compaction grouting is one that rapidly expands in a total of thirty seconds in order to immediately fill the voids and compact the surrounding soil through great expansive pressure. The fast action of expansion, during which the foam swells up to twenty times its size, forms balls or columns of a dense structural foam that also increases the load bearing capacity of the soil.
Using chemical grouting to stabilize the soil allows your space to be traffic ready within fifteen minutes of application, at which time the foam is at 85% strength. For sites in which soil has settled and caused a concrete slab to start sinking or rocking, Solid Foundations can combine our chemical grouting processes with our Precision Lift process in order to lift the slab and restore it to its original position. We can use either compaction grouting or permeation grouting along with Precision Lift to raise a concrete highway, warehouse floor, or even an entire building.
Soil Stabilization Services
Our soil stabilization uses only the safest, strongest, and most advanced methods to put your completed project back on solid ground or give your current project solid ground on which to stand when it is completed, so trust your soil to Solid Foundations. No matter the soil type or the particular soil conditions your site is facing, whether erosion, runoff, swelling, poor compaction, or improper footing embedment, Solid Foundations has the geotechnical knowledge and field experience to inject the soil with the extra strength it needs to hold up your building, roadway, slab, or large vehicles. Our caring, friendly, and professional team can fix the problem and stabilize your soil the right way the first time, so contact Solid Foundations today to learn more about soil stabilization and let us meet your soil needs!
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