Construction projects done on sites with poor soil require aggregate piers made of compacted stone, making them effective in increasing the bearing pressure and mitigating settlement under structural footings. This type of construction is recommended for areas with poor soil because of the cost involved and the effectiveness in reinforcing soft soil. Besides being a cost-effective solution for reinforcement of soft cohesive soil, it also offers sufficient support in structures that have poor fill.
Aggregate piers are formed when lifts of stones are introduced to the picture, where there is an open hole, then compacted using high-energy densification equipment. Other piers are referred to as aggregate piers despite being different, such as rammed piers and vibrated piers. The aggregate piers need to be installed in groups for enhanced stability and support in different structures.
What Are the Benefits of Aggregate Piers
If you consider deep foundation or remove-and-replace, then aggregate piers are the best solutions, mainly because of the reduced cost. The entire installation process is usually fast, with high pressure bearing capabilities of close to 4000 pounds per square foot to 6000 pounds per square foot. Consulting a qualified team of contractors is vital in ensuring that the installation method of aggregate piers results in little or no errors being generated.
It is important to ensure that the installation process is continuously monitored to avoid any mishaps resulting in structural failure. During the installation process, onboard computers are used to accurately record and monitor all the activities involved and detect any potential risk that may result in structural failure.
If the site is soft and requires drainage before breaking ground on a project, contractors must use the Vibro-displacement process, which accelerates the drainage process. Installation of aggregate piers will be more effective if the ground is thoroughly drained, mainly to avoid potential collapses or other life-threatening factors.
How Effective are Aggregate Piers
Most construction is built in areas where the ground is hard and stable, mainly because soft clay and silt areas are considered to be high risk. Using aggregate piers in such places is extremely effective since it reinforces the soft ground and improves artificial fills. Depending on the method used to install them, aggregate piers are an asset in improving loose, silt sands with a process commonly referred to as Vibro-placement. The probe has proven to be effective, especially in enhancing the density of sand, making the process faster and effective in preventing structurally compromised constructions.
Contractors use aggregate piers in various construction projects, mainly starting with industrial facilities, multi-story buildings, agricultural facilities, liquid storage tanks, commercial, warehouses, and retail centers. Aggregate piers are considered to be quite effective when stabilizing a construction, and is recommended for contractors working on a budget, without compromising structural integrity.