PowerBrace - The Leading Foundation Wall Bracing System
Tuesday, March 8th, 2016 by Thrasher
At Thrasher, we offer many products and solutions that can fix your home or protect your home from future damage. I want to talk about our foundation wall support systems specifically. We have three different solutions when it comes to foundation wall support. We have a GeoLock wall anchor, we have a CarbonArmor system, and a PowerBrace system.
Now let's specifically talk about our Powerbrace System.
When it comes to foundation wall issues, there are a few different signs that you have a problem depending on the type of foundation you have in your home. The two most common foundations in the market today are a concrete block foundation and a poured concrete foundation. Each of those foundation types shows you further evidence that there is a problem. For a concrete block foundation, there are four different stages of wall failure. The first stage is a horizontal crack running across the wall right around the frost line. The second stage is stair-stepped cracks following the mortar joints towards the corners. Stage 3 is the shearing of the wall located on the top of the 1st course of blocks. The final stage is a full foundation wall failure. Now, for a concrete poured foundation, there are only three stages of wall failure. Stage 1 is a vertical crack forming at an angle towards the middle of the wall, stage 2 is the wall begins to tip over from the top coming free from the sill plate, and stage 3 is the wall continues to tip over to the point that it falls into your home. A question that we get a lot is how long does it take for a wall to go from stage 1 to stage 3 or 4? The hard part about that question is there is no concrete answer. The wall will continue through wall failure stages until something is done to stop it from continuing to happen.
Now let us look at how our PowerBrace system can stop the stages of wall failure I discussed above. When it comes to the PowerBrace system, it is one of the best methods available in the market to stabilize your foundation permanently. No matter what stage of wall failure you have (short of stage 3 or stage 4), the PowerBrace system can be utilized.
The PowerBrace system is a galvanized I-beam that runs the full height of your foundation wall that is securely fastened to the concrete basement floor and attached to the floor joist cavity utilizing one of our patented brackets. Let's specifically talk about a concrete block foundation. If you have the horizontal crack near the frost line, the PowerBrace system's installation will prevent the foundation wall from continuing to bow or belly in, ultimately stopping the wall failure from ever reaching Stage 2. Now, suppose we are fixing your wall as it's already reached stage 2 of failure (the stair-step cracks). In that case, our PowerBrace system secured directly to your concrete basement floor and pushed tightly against the foundation wall will prevent the wall from shear at the bottom. If we catch your wall at stage 3 and the shearing has already begun, it is not too late. We can still install the PowerBrace system and stop the shearing in its tracks to ensure that the wall can not fail, ultimately saving your foundation wall. There does come a time when we must add our patented ShotLock solution in alignment with our PowerBraces, and that is when a wall is compromised to the point where over half of the concrete block is pushed into the home. So, we utilize a measurement to determine the maximum inward movement. If your foundation wall is 4 inches or more, we must pair our PowerBrace system with our ShotLock system to achieve a permanently stabilized foundation wall.
Typically, a concrete block foundation is 8 inches thick, so in this situation, half or more of the block will have already been compromised, resulting in the need for more drastic measures.
As you can see, no matter what the status of your foundation wall Thrasher has a solution that can help you protect your foundation and ultimately your home. If we can't fix it with one of our solutions, then the only solution you have is full foundation replacement. That is not something anyone wants to have to go through, it's highly intrusive, and your home is inhabitable during that process, not to mention the several thousands of dollars it will cost. So, now that you understand the stages of wall failure do not wait. Call Thrasher today and let us help you permanently stabilize your foundation!
See how foundation wall bracing systems, like PowerBrace, can help to stabilize your home potentially reverse wall failure without any invasive drilling or digging on the property.