The essentiality of a well-constructed foundation for a building can not be emphasized enough. A building without a foundation is like a ship with a cracked bottom. That is, it won’t stay afloat for very long. Despite the pool of information available, people still dare to ask whether they can construct a building or house without a foundation. The simple answer is, yes, you can do that, but don’t expect the structure to stand for a long time. Such a building will crumble to the ground without allowing you to even understand what happened.
Typically, a foundation serves two crucial functions:
- Optimally distributing the load of the structure to the bedrock underneath.
- And protecting the building’s base from groundwater.
Thus, you can imagine why a building without a foundation is not likely to retain its integrity. As Edmonton’s most reputable building contractors, we face one important question from construction project owners regarding the matter.
Do All Types Of Buildings Have The Same Foundation?
No. There is an array of foundation options you, as a construction project owner, can choose from. However, your choice will depend upon numerous factors, including:
- Your building’s size, weight, and type
- The water tables
- The geology of the site
- The soil type and its chemical properties
- The terrain
- The construction technique and materials to be used
Hence, selecting an ideal foundation for your building is not an easy decision. Although we cannot discuss every relevant detail through a blog post, an attempt to at least shed some light on the basics will significantly pay off.
So for the purpose of this blog, we shall explore the types of building foundations and their suitability for certain construction projects.
Types Of Foundations
For any type of building structure, the foundation options can be split into two broad categories of shallow foundations and deep foundations. Within these categories, we then have an array of subtypes.
When the soil or the ground on which the building is to be constructed is so soft that it cannot support the structure, a deep foundation needs to be laid. For example, if you need to erect a resort in a sandy area such as a beach. For such projects, you must excavate the ground until you come into contact with a firmer layer so that the base is stronger and deep-rooted. Sometimes, you might even have to go underwater.
Other examples would include large structures like skyscrapers, dams, and bridges. Although this category is most suitable for large projects and structures to be constructed over water or in sandy areas, it can also be used to construct small structures, such as houses on steep cliffs.
Some examples of deep foundations include:
- Caisson foundations
- Pile Foundations
- Drilled shafts
- Buoyancy rafts
As their name suggests, shallow foundations are the opposite of deep foundations. These are usually wider rather than deep. Instead of transferring the load down into the earth, these foundations spread the weight of a structure over the expansive soil by covering a wider area. The width of this foundation is five times more than its depth.
The foundation supporting the weight of your house is most likely shallow. These foundations are used for smaller and lightweight projects like the construction of homes, small offices, shops, garages, and much more. However, it is essential first to ensure that the top layer of the soil can support the weight of the structure to be constructed.
Building contractors often find shallow foundations to be quite an attractive option because these do not require deep excavations and are relatively quick to construct. The latter translates into reduced labor costs, less costly equipment, a simple process, and reduced environmental impact. </>
Regardless, we would like to emphasize that these benefits should never be used as excuses to construct a shallow foundation instead of a deep one. If your project necessitates a deep foundation, you must go with it to avoid bearing negative consequences in the future.
Shallow foundations include:
- Individual or isolated footings
- Combined footings
- Mat or raft foundations
- Strip or stem wall foundations
Regardless of the type of foundation you require, it is essential to ensure that the construction contractor you have onboard is well-versed with the process.
From laying a strong foundation to erect various superstructures, our team has spent years playing around with the earth and moulding its elements into multiple shapes. Learn more about Premium Built’s expertise and excellence. Contact us now to start your project.