The WCK Foundation Repair Blog

Louisiana Foundation Repair Companies: Baton Rouge vs. New Orleans

Posted by WCK Foundation Expert Team on Jan 28, 2016 10:39:54 AM

Louisiana Foundation Repair Companies: Baton Rouge vs. New OrleansGeographical differences are quite common when it comes to experience, expertise and preference.  In fact all three of these categories are widely influenced by the surrounding environment.  Based on the conditions of where you live, different people are going to develop different skills and methods to solve different problems.  Then there is “preference”.  In Philadelphia you can like cheesesteaks, but there are local rules, allegiances and preferences to the “proper” way to enjoy this culinary staple.  While the list of examples can go on and on, it is important to differentiate between the expertise developed by a geographical constraint and the preference of location based specialty.  Just because you prefer Kansas City Bar-b-Que to Carolina doesn’t mean you’d hire a realtor from Kansas City to find you a house in Charlotte.  The same is especially true when it comes to foundation repair in south Louisiana. 


New Orleans Foundation Repair and Shoring

Foundation repair companies in the New Orleans area (south of the North Shore) have specialized methods and equipment that are suited for the specific soil conditions in this part of the state.  The water table in New Orleans is much higher than it is in the Baton Rouge area and along the I-12 corridor along the North Shore (Hammond, Covington, Slidell, etc.).  The top layer of soil is also much softer.  In order to repair foundations and prevent movement these companies use pressed piers that are designed to find rock and firm soil that is much deeper in the New Orleans area. 

These pressed piers don’t work well in the Baton Rouge and North Shore area due to its denser soil.  Pressed piers are designed to go deep into the ground.  North of New Orleans, the soil is dense enough that solid ground can typically be found within the first four feet.  When pressed piers push through this dense layer of soil, they reach a much softer layer that provides little to no stability.  If these pressed piers are placed too shallowly to avoid softer soil, they become much less effective.

Baton Rouge and North Shore Foundation Repair

In the Baton Rouge and North Shore areas our homes are built on a denser, clay-laden soil.  The water table is also much lower.  The ideal method for foundation repair in these conditions is the drilled pier method.  This method requires very little movement from the structure and is very effective in the dense soil.  However, this method does not work in the New Orleans area as the piers do not move far enough below the home to anchor in a solid layer of soil. 

Franchised Foundation Repair Companies          

These unique and differing soil conditions are major factors when choosing between foundation repair companies, especially franchises.  Many large companies sell their franchising rights to inexperienced business owners.  They are trained at a corporate center on soil conditions that are quite different from our unique soil.  One reason these franchises are attractive to the owners is that they don’t have to hire or train employees; they can simply sub contract labor.  Again this labor force is rarely familiar with the conditions causing foundation damage in our area, and if they are they don’t have access to the appropriate resources to effectively repair the damage.

The moral of the story is that if you live in New Orleans or a nearby community (south of the North Shore) you need to seek the expertise of a New Orleans based foundation repair company.  The same is true if you live in the Baton Rouge area, or along the North Shore, that you trust your home to a Baton Rouge area foundation repair specialist.  Locally owned and operated companies are also preferred over franchises.  For over 30 years WCK Foundation Repair has been repairing and restoring home’s and business’ safety and value.  This family-owned foundation repair company remains a small (by comparison) company with a full-time staff of experts in order to maintain their community and customer commitment.  WCK works only with local engineers to get the best information for our unique conditions and creates a customized solution for each project.  Their work comes with a fully-transferrable lifetime warranty.

7 Signs of Foundation Repair in Baton Rouge

Topics: Soil Differences

Revealed: The Key Soil Differences in New Orleans & the North Shore

Posted by WCK Foundation Expert Team on Aug 5, 2013 10:54:00 AM

Revealed: The Key Soil Differences Between New Orleans & the North ShoreHere in Louisiana we have a variety of environmental factors that affect the type of ground on which our home's foundation rests.  Our proximity to the Mississippi River, our elaborate system of swamps and bayous, our lush wetlands, and more all affect how homes and structures will settle and react to the elements here in South Louisiana.  In fact there can be drastic differences from one part of our region to another, even within a relatively small distance.

For homeowners on the I-12 corridor in cities like Hammond, Ponchatoula, Covington, Mandeville, and Slidell with foundation issues, a New Orleans based foundation repair company may seem like the convenient option.  However the soil across Lake Pontchartrain in New Orleans is quite different from that on the North Shore.  To account for the difference in sea level, the depth of the water table and types of soil in the New Orleans area, these foundation repair companies utilize techniques that won’t be appropriate for your home.

As most people know, the majority of New Orleans is below sea level.  As such, the water table rests one to two feet below the ground.  To combat these elements, the pressured pile method of foundation repair is employed.  These pilings can be pressed into the ground to depths of 70 feet or more.  At this depth there is more solid clay.  This is the only method that works for foundations in the greater New Orleans area.  However, this is a very ineffective method for denser ground found on the North Shore and in the Baton Rouge area.

From Baton Rouge, east to Slidell, the drill shaft method is ideal.  Good, solid clay can be found at a depth of 10 to 20 feet.  Once your home is raised as close as possible to its original grade, structural steel supports are place on each pier. 

WCK Foundation Repair has been using this method for over 30 years.  Located in Walker, LA, they service the greater Baton Rouge area and are in a convenient location to meet the needs of North Shore homeowners.  Owner Mike Wall and the WCK Foundation Repair team are dedicated to educating the community on foundation repair.  It’s critical for your home that you select the right company and the right method of repair depending on the unique soil in your area.


7 Signs of Foundation Repair in Baton Rouge

Topics: Foundation Repair, Soil Differences