What Is A Pier And Beam Foundation?

May 23, 2023 Baird Foundation Repair

Whether you’re looking for a new home or for ways to fix up your current home, foundation can make or break a home’s integrity. Having a good, strong foundation keeps a house protected from the numerous problems caused by a failing foundation. But what makes a foundation “good” or “bad”?

While looking at a typical San Antonio home, you will often see that it’s built on top of a slab foundation. But for other homes or those in different areas of Texas, you might see pier and beam foundations. As a leading San Antonio foundation company, Baird Foundation Repair wants homeowners to know the difference between slab and pier and beam foundations.

What Is a Slab Foundation?

A slab foundation is made from concrete on top of a layer of sand or the ground. You can sometimes find that they contain steel rods or tension cables to reinforce the strength of the foundation to support your home. Because they rest on a solid piece of concrete, slab foundations contain no holes, crawl spaces, or basements.

They are most effective when used on flat lots and in warmer climates, so they won’t crack from weather conditions and extreme temperature fluctuations. Since they can withstand strong weather events, slab foundations still hold their own in places like Corpus Christi, Houston, and Austin, Texas.

Slab Foundation Repair

For your typical slab maintenance, you won’t have to worry about cleaning a crawl space or basement. Most repairs are related to stabilizing the concrete foundation to keep it from deteriorating.

If foundation problems are left unchecked, you can expect gaps or cracks in the slab to grow, which will make your home increasingly unstable over time. The best way to combat these damages is by getting the problem resolved early before it turns into a serious issue.

How Do Pier and Beam Foundations Compare?

Pier and beam foundations are used more often in areas with homes that are built on uneven ground, like hills or flood zones.

They are made up of concrete or wooden piers that dig deep into the ground and sit underneath beams that support the home’s flooring. The beams and piers connect to each other securely and leave an open crawl space. This space makes repair jobs easier under homes that are built on these kinds of foundations.

Pier And Beam Foundation Repair

But because of the open space, pier and beam foundations involve some maintenance that you won’t find in slab foundations. This includes:

  • Replacing rotten wood
  • Installing new beams and joists
  • Removing pests or rodents from the crawl space

While these problems are common in pier and beam foundations, their overall repair costs are less expensive compared to other types of foundations, like slabs. You can also expect reduced risks of flooding, which will keep your home safe from the elements.

Which Foundation Best Fits My Home?

If you want to find out what kind of support structure your home has, you can always contact your local foundation repair specialists. Our team at Baird Foundation Repair can take care of any foundation damages you may have, whether it’s a pier and beam or slab foundation. Contact us for a free, no-obligation inspection today!