Category Archives: Foamjacking
Concrete leveling refers to correcting uneven or sinking concrete slabs. This is done through a variety of methods that alter the foundation that is beneath the concrete surface. It is less expensive to level concrete than to remove and replace the slab. Concrete leveling can be used in residential, commercial, and municipal applications. Homes, warehouses, roads, shopping centers, airports, and more can all be helped with concrete leveling.
What Causes Concrete to Settle
There are several reasons that a concrete slab can settle. If the soil isn’t properly compacted during construction, it can compress or settle once the weight of the structure is placed on it. This could happen relatively soon or gradually over years. Another cause is soil that is either too wet or too dry. Oversaturated soil can swell and heave, putting tremendous pressure on the concrete. Soil that is too dry can shrink and crack, no longer providing strength and stability to the concrete above. If the area around the concrete doesn’t drain properly, the soil beneath the slab can erode, washing the support out from under the concrete.
Other causes that can damage concrete are tree roots that push against concrete slabs and seismic activity. Both of these can cause slabs to crack, move, or otherwise be damaged.
Methods of Concrete Leveling
Just as there are several causes of concrete settling, there are different ways to stabilize and lift the slab. Although the methods are different in cost, application, effectiveness, and time, the result is a level concrete slab. These methods all fall under the category of “slabjacking”. The premise is to lift the concrete by pumping a mixture through holes in the slab, lifting the concrete from below.
The initial injection fills the voids beneath the slab. Once the voids are filled, the remaining injection lifts the concrete. The holes are then patched and the project is done. All slabjacking methods take less time, cause less disruption, and cost less money than tearing up and replacing the concrete. Slabjacking is not an option if the concrete is too damaged. If there are too many cracks, you may be forced to tear up the old slab and replace it.
There are three types of slabjacking.
Stone Slurry Grout Leveling
This type of slurry is made from pulverized limestone, water, and Portland cement. This slurry is thick and pumped through holes that are around 1″ in diameter. The slurry is pumped below the slab, filling the voids below the concrete. Once the void is full, the slurry begins exerting pressure on the slab, lifting the concrete into place. An expert operator can precisely lift the concrete to the desired height without cracking the slab. When the concrete is level, the hoses are detached and the holes are filled.
The stone slurry grout has a compressive strength of 240 psi. If Portland cement is added, the compressive strength jumps to an amazing 6000 psi. Once the slurry dries, it forms a near-solid stone foundation. This method has the highest compressive strength of all the methods described here. Stone slurry grout takes more clean-up afterward and uses bigger holes than polyurethane foam. The slab that is being lifted usually has to be within 200 feet of the truck that is pumping the slurry.
Mudjacking uses a mixture of soil, sand, water, and cement that is injected through holes drilled in the slab. Other materials may be added to the slurry, including clay, limestone, fly ash, masonry cement, and pea gravel. The holes are typically larger than the ones used for stone slurry grout and polyjacking, coming in around 1 to 2″ in diameter. Like stone slurry grout leveling, the mudjacking slurry is injected through the holes beneath the slab. A portable pump is usually used, allowing better access to the slab than stone slurry grout leveling. When the void is filled, the remaining slurry builds under the concrete, lifting the slab. Once the concrete is level, the holes are filled and the project is complete.
The weight of the mudjacking and stone slurry grout can compromise soil that is already weak, causing more problems down the road. It also involves more clean-up than polyjacking and uses the biggest holes of the methods described here. This is also the slowest process of the three.
Expanding Structural Foam Leveling, or as we call it, polyjacking uses an expanding polyurethane foam in its injection process. The polymer is a combination of two different materials, that, when combined cause the mixture to expand. The holes needed for the injection are around 5/8″, the smallest of all the methods. The expanding foam first compresses any weak soil it encounters, consolidating the sub-soil and causing it to become denser. The foam then fills any voids beneath the concrete. Lastly, once the void is filled, the foam will lift the slab to the height needed for it to be level and stable.
The foam moves throughout the underside of the slab, expanding in all directions, filling the area below the concrete. The foam is also hydrophobic when cured, preventing heaving from occurring in freezing temperatures and avert erosion. The clean-up process is simpler than mudjacking or stone slurry grout leveling, uses smaller holes, and uses smaller equipment that can reach places trucks may not be able to access.
Contact the professionals at Polyjacking.com to learn more about the benefits and advantages of leveling your concrete with our method.
Steps Lifting in Missouri
The crew at Polyjacking.com recently lifted some steps in Missouri. The steps had sunk and were beginning to pull away from the rest of the home. This was not only unsightly but could be dangerous. Additionally, the crack in the steps could allow water to enter the foundation of the home.
We used polyurethane foam to lift the steps to their original position, protecting the home from damage and the occupants from being injured.
Check out the gallery below to see the difference between before and after.
Driveway Lift in Harrisonville
We recently lifted a driveway around 6 inches in Harrisonville, MO. One of our clients in Harrisonville, Missouri had a driveway that had sunk a fairly good amount. We ended up using polyurethane foam to raise the sunken driveway slab about 6 inches. The customers were happy to have a level and safe driveway once we were done.
Check out the before and after pictures in the gallery below.
Sunken driveway in Harrisonville, MO
The professionals at Polyjacking.com were recently called in to help with some floor leveling repairs that were needed on the campus of KU Edwards in Overland Park, KS. The campus was opened in 1993 and offers programs for undergraduates, graduates, and certificates along with professional and continuing education courses.
Floor Leveling and Void Filling on KU Edwards Campus
We were called in to take a look at an unlevel floor in one of the on-campus buildings. Upon inspection, we discovered that the floor needed to be raised by an inch due to voids that had formed under the building that had caused the floor to sink. The voids were around five feet below the surface and caused by a broken water line. Our experts leveled the floor and filled the voids, providing a stable foundation for the building and a safe environment for students and faculty members.
Please view the gallery below with some pictures from the work site. If you have any questions or would like more information, please contact us at Polyjacking.com.
Pretty much our entire service area has been the victim of non-stop rains and long-lasting flooding this spring. This weather is taking a toll on buildings, roads, fields, and people. The rain has to come to an end, eventually, right?
The Weather’s Impact on Concrete Slabs
You can do everything right when it comes to downspouts, gutters, and other drainage solutions, but when it rains this much for this long, every system can be overwhelmed. If you already had a water issue, the problem can be even greater.
When the ground becomes as wet and saturated as it has this spring, bad things can happen to your home or business. Basement walls can begin to bow or lean, due to pressure from the water-logged soil. Foundations can shift or sink as the soil weakens from all the water. Driveways, sidewalks, and patios can sink or buckle. These problems can range from being annoying to being a danger to peoples’ safety.
Small cracks may not seem like a big deal, but water doesn’t take much to be able to enter your home or business. In addition, a crack may be small on the side you can see, but the other side may be much bigger.
You may not have a problem right now with sinking or settling slabs but when the soil dries out, you might. The soil expands when it is saturated, then when it dries out, it will shrink, possibly removing the support your concrete surface needs.
Slabs can sink, not allowing water to drain correctly or causing tripping hazards. Voids can open under the concrete, causing the soil to wash away even more, creating dangerous situations.
If you suspect that your concrete is being damaged by rain problems, you don’t want to wait. The damage won’t heal itself and the needed repairs will only take more time and money the longer they go undone.
Polyjacking Solutions Work the Best
Fortunately, you have options available to help restore your concrete’s stability and strength. Some options are better than others, so make sure you take the time to choose the one that will provide you with the best benefits.
We believe that polyjacking is the answer for many types of concrete problems. In this method, polyurethane foam is injected beneath the slab. The foam expands, lifting the concrete to within 1/10th of an inch of the desired height. In addition, the foam is water-resistant, so it won’t wash away like the slurry used in mudjacking. The foam hardens and seals the bottom of the concrete, preventing any cracks from allowing water to seep through and filling any voids below the surface. The expanding foam also compacts any loose soil that may be under the slab.
The foam is lightweight (about 3-5 pounds/cubic foot) compared with mudjacking grout (over 100 pounds/cubic foot). The added weight of mudjacking can cause problems down the road as it combines with the weight of the concrete and whatever traffic is using the surface.
The installation process is another benefit that polyjacking has over other methods. In mudjacking, the holes that are drilled into your concrete are 3 inches or bigger in diameter, whereas the polyjacking holes are only 5/8″ wide. No heavy equipment is needed, so your lawn won’t be driven over with tractors and trucks and the area won’t be full of construction pieces. The foam takes about 15 minutes to cure, so as soon as that’s done, you can use the slab. Other methods may require days or weeks to allow you to use the concrete slab.
Don’t let Mother Nature’s temper tantrums damage your concrete slabs. Let us keep your driveways, patios, sidewalks, and more level and strong. Contact us to learn more about how polyjacking can help you and your home or business.
We won’t lie, the winter is usually a slow time for us. People get busy with family activities, dealing with the weather, and frankly, just hibernating. Also, people may not know that they can polyjack their concrete during the winter months. We understand, there are a lot of winter days where outdoor activities are the furthest from our minds.
There are several reasons why you may want or need to have your concrete leveled. If the problem is dangerous or damaging your house or business, or you’re looking to sell the property, you may not be able to wait until the weather warms up. The reasons may override your schedule.
Is It Too Cold to Polyjack?
The temperature does factor into the success of your concrete lifting, but you may be surprised by other factors that come into play during the winter. Extreme cold can cause the ground to freeze solid making the concrete lifting difficult or downright impossible. The frozen earth can hold onto the concrete, sticking to the bottom of the slab and possibly causing the cement to break before it can even be raised.
It is almost impossible to perform mudjacking during the winter. The mud slurry that is used to raise the concrete can freeze inside the pump or hoses, making it impossible to move the slurry. Water is used to remove excess slurry, which isn’t an option in below-freezing conditions. Due to the mess and danger of mudjacking, most projects are done outside, so the winter prevents that from being a common option for concrete lifting during that time.
Polyjacking can be limited by extremely cold temperatures, however, the limits are much less than those that impact mudjacking. The polyurethane foam that is used for polyjacking is created by combining two liquids. These liquids are heated in a temperature-controlled environment, then injected through a heated hose. The foam is largely unaffected by outdoor temperatures, so it can be used effectively in cold weather.
If you need concrete lifting and aren’t sure if it’s too cold out, just give us a call and ask! As you know, the weather could be below zero one day, then in the 50s the next. We’ll be able to let you know when we’ll be able to safely lift your concrete. We don’t want to cause more problems than you already have, so we’ll be upfront and honest with you in regards to the best time for your particular project.
Contact us today to learn more about polyjacking your concrete at any time of the year. We look forward to providing you with a safe and strong concrete surface.
Most of the service area covered by Polyjacking.com has had a lot more rain this summer than usual. In addition to ruining a lot of outdoor plans, the rainfall may have wreaked havoc with the foundation of your home or business.
If your building wasn’t flooded, why should you be worried about the amount of rain in your area?
Water and Soil
When there is a lot of rain, it has to go somewhere. Some of it may run into storm sewers or creeks or other planned run-off areas. Most of the time, though, it goes into the soil until the ground is saturated. The water-soaked soil can cause problems for concrete slabs and foundations.
When the soil is oversaturated, it can exert a tremendous amount of pressure on its surroundings. This is called hydrostatic pressure and it can damage a foundation wall completely. If the foundation of your building is under the strain of hydrostatic pressure, the walls may begin to bow or lean. Walls and slab floors may show cracking as the soil and water pushes against the rigid concrete.
Water will take the path of least resistance and can erode the soil around it. When the soil gets washed away, it removes the support from around the foundation or slab. Voids can open underneath the concrete, allowing the slab to sink or crack.
If the rain falls too fast or the ground is saturated, the water can flood buildings or enter cracks no bigger than a hair. Water can weaken concrete and put your slab or building in danger.
Water Damage Prevention
There are steps you can take to help keep your home or business dry. You can make sure that your gutters and downspouts are clear and emptying at least 10 feet from the foundation. In addition, companies like Pro Foundation Technology, Inc. can provide you with waterproofing techniques to keep the water out of your building.
Some options that can help with surface drainage include drywells, gutters, and French drains. It is important that you have good surface drainage or the water you keep out of your building will just come right back, trying to enter your foundation.
To properly install exterior drainage, the outside of the building will have to be excavated, exposing the footing. Most reputable contractors will roll on or spray a polymer waterproofing product. A drain pipe system should be installed for continuous drainage. The drain can empty to a sump pump system or to daylight.
One of the most important parts of a waterproofing system is the implementation of a sealed interior drain tile system. Since the system is underneath the foundation, it is important that it is installed correctly from the start. Cracks in the walls and floor will need to be sealed with epoxy or polyurethane.
Sump Pump System
A sump pump system can move water out of the building, keeping water from flooding the structure. The system consists of a sump pump, a sump pit, and we recommend a battery back-up sump pump.
My Slab is Damaged, Now What?
So after all of the rain this summer you may be facing a damaged concrete slab or foundation, so what can you do? Before you call in someone to have the slab torn up, contact the experts at Polyjacking.com. We will come out and look at your property and determine if polyjacking is the solution you need. Polyjacking a slab is a LOT cheaper than destroying it and replacing the concrete.
The process is relatively easy and doesn’t require heavy machinery. Small holes are drilled in the concrete and polyurethane foam is injected under the slab. The foam expands, lifting the concrete and filling in any voids and cracks underneath the slab. The foam is water-resistant, so it won’t erode and the foam compacts the soil, making it more stable. By the time the equipment is removed and the area is cleaned up, you can use the slab. Curing time is about 15 minutes, so you won’t have to wait long to get back to business.
Contact the pros at Polyjacking.com to learn more about how using polyurethane foam to repair your concrete is the most cost-effective and long-lasting solution available.
When the ground under a concrete slab erodes, it can cause a lot of problems. Homes with basements usually have the most problems, but voids can impact driveways, patios, sidewalks, and more. The erosion causes air pockets or voids to develop under the concrete slab, taking support away from the surface.
Causes of Voids
There are several different reasons that a void can occur beneath your concrete. Most of the time, it isn’t due to erosion, but other factors. Some issues can happen quickly, while others can take years to cause problems.
Soil consolidation occurs over time. This occurs when loose soil under the concrete consolidates or sifts down. If the soil is not properly prepared by being tamped down, this can occur. When the soil consolidates, a void can form over time.
Settlement is a natural occurrence that happens over time. It can occur with new construction or with a property that is a hundred years old. It all depends on the type of soil and weather patterns. Heavy rains or flooding can cause the soil to settle faster than normal. If the settling soil is in a large enough area, it can allow erosion to occur. Settling soil sets the table for a problem, erosion just makes it worse.
If water doesn’t drain correctly or there is new landscaping or other additions to the property, erosion can start after years with no problems. The water will run freely, washing out the soil and creating a void under the concrete. The bigger the void, the more damage that can occur.
Solutions for Voids Under Your Concrete
You don’t have to tear up your concrete to fix the problem of having a void. The best solution is polyjacking. High-Density polyurethane foam is injected through small holes into the voids. The foam expands, filling the void and sealing any cracks on the underside of the slab. The foam will not wash away and the slab is usable shortly after the foam is injected. Mudjacking is an alternative, but the sand-based grout can be washed away or not fill the void and you’re back to square one.
You’ll still need to take care of drainage problems, as they will continue to cause problems for your home or business. Make sure that water is draining correctly and away from the foundation or concrete area. The polyurethane foam won’t wash away, but the surrounding soil can erode. Let a company like Pro Foundation Technology assist you with waterproofing services.
Protect your property from foundation damage, trip and fall hazards, and sunken concrete by making sure the water is draining from your property. If you already have problems, let an expert like those at Polyjacking.com help you restore your concrete slab to the necessary height.
Trip and fall accidents are the #1 leading cause of injuries around the home, but should you replace your slab or have it lifted? Protecting your family, employees, and customers are all important, but you need to make an educated decision.
In the past, most people would just break up the old slab, level out the underlying soil and have new concrete poured in the same location. Today, polyjacking has become a much better option and has become more popular throughout the industry.
How Polyjacking Works
The polyjacking process is relatively simple and, though it doesn’t take long, it is extremely effective. The process uses little equipment, so you won’t have a bunch of trucks or other machines cluttering up your property. Small holes (5/8″) are drilled into the slab. The polyurethane foam is injected through the holes and expands under the slab, filling in voids, gaps, and cracks. The slab is raised to the required height and the foam seals the bottom of the slab, preventing more gaps and cracks from forming.
Once the slab is raised to the desired height, the holes are closed and the foam cures in about 15 minutes. Once the foam is hard, you can walk or drive on the slab, allowing everyone to get back to their normal day-to-day routine.
Benefits of Polyjacking vs New Concrete
We’ve told you about the process of polyjacking and some of the benefits, but what about replacing the slab with new concrete?
Some things to consider when thinking about new concrete:
- Concrete replacement can cost twice as much or more than polyjacking
- The new concrete is likely to have a different color than the existing slab
- The cause of the sinking slab may not be repaired
With polyjacking, there is little disturbance to your lawn and landscaping, whereas heavy equipment is needed to break up the old concrete and remove it. After the slab is removed, a mixer is brought in to pour the new slab, adding to the machinery required. Polyjacking just uses one truck or trailer to raise the slab.
If you are debating whether to go with polyjacking or pouring a new slab, contact Polyjacking.com to go over your options. We’ll be honest with you and show you the pros and cons of each method.