The strength and reliability of the foundation directly depends on how durable and safe your future home will be. Any mistake made when arranging the foundation can entail both expensive repairs of the entire house and the destruction of the supporting structures of the building. Choosing a good foundation is a rather complicated procedure, let’s figure out which foundation is best to choose for your home.
What to consider when choosing a foundation
- soil properties, its composition, stability, the presence of groundwater, heaving (change in volume during freezing);
- load on the foundation, taking into account the weight of the entire structure and equipment (heating, sewerage, furniture);
- the material from which you will build the foundation.
Which foundation is better to choose
Monolithic cast foundation is the strongest and most durable.
Precast-monolithic foundation of concrete blocks fastened with concrete mortar has advantages in installation speed
According to the type of construction, there are 4 types of foundations, and each of them has its own characteristics.
A strip foundation is a solid “strip” of concrete or brick, erected under the load-bearing walls of the future house. For its device, a trench is prepared in the ground, in which then either reinforcement is installed and concrete solution is poured (monolithic type), or concrete blocks or bricks are laid out, fastening them with mortar (precast-monolithic).
- Advantages: ease of construction, strength, resistance to heavy loads, variety of shapes, the possibility of arranging a basement under the house.
- Disadvantages: the possibility of “shrinkage” in the ground, good waterproofing (especially for prefabricated monolithic) and insulation is required.
When installing a monolithic strip foundation, they often use “but” – stone, broken brick, pieces of concrete, which are added to the base poured with concrete. This significantly reduces its cost, but affects its strength.
A strip foundation is the best choice for areas with stable ground.
The slab foundation is erected on moving and loose soils. It is a monolithic reinforced concrete slab with a thickness of 30 cm to 1 m, poured under the entire base of the future structure. Such a foundation will reliably protect your home from cracks and destruction during ground movements.
- Advantages: uniform distribution of the load of the future structure, high strength, does not require filling the floor slab,
- Disadvantages: high cost, construction is possible only on a flat area of terrain, it is impossible to equip a basement.
A monolithic foundation is the best choice for building a multi-storey building on a site with soft soil.
Columnar foundation – a structure of several pillars installed at the corners, under the main load-bearing walls and around the perimeter of the future structure. It can be made of various materials: concrete blocks, brick, stone, wood. The most durable is reinforced concrete or reinforced rubble. The pillars are installed in the ground at a distance of 1.5-2.5 meters and buried, depending on the heaving of the ground and the planned load of the structure. For arranging small buildings (veranda, barn, summer cottage), a depth of 50-80 cm is sufficient.
- Advantages: easy to install, low cost.
- Disadvantages: low strength, impossible basement arrangement.
A columnar foundation is suitable for the construction of light one-story structures, but unacceptable for a strong stone house.
The structure of the pile foundation resembles a columnar foundation , but instead of pillars, metal piles are used, which are driven or screwed into the ground.
To increase the strength, the upper parts of the piles protruding over the ground are “tied” together with metal reinforcement or channel bars and poured with concrete.
- Advantages: strength and stability, high speed of installation (1-2 days for a small private house), no preliminary earthworks, low cost.
- Disadvantages: the need to use special equipment and specialists, metal piles are subject to corrosion and have a limited service life.
It is good to use a pile foundation when building a one- or two-story house on unstable, loose, swampy soil. It can be used as a support for a strip or slab foundation.
It is better to entrust the choice of the type of foundation and material to a specialist who will carry out all the necessary calculations and design the supporting structure individually for your home.
The cost of the foundation will primarily depend on the cost of building materials.