Trifusion Blog

Why Foam Injection?

Posted by on Mar 28, 2016 in Trifusion Foundation Repair Events, Trifusion News | Comments Off on Why Foam Injection?

Why Foam Injection?

I’ve discussed previously the reason(s) why we don’t do interior piering – namely, it’s not the best solution.  But polyurethane foam injection has only been around for about 30 years, and slab foundations predate it.  So what did people do to fill voids before foam? Well, foam injection falls under the umbrella of “grout injection,” and until the 1980s, that meant cementitious grout – in other words, cement. Just like with foam injection, holes were drilled in the concrete slab, and more concrete was injected into the void beneath.  While this was effective, it was also incredibly heavy – and though there are different weights of polyurethane foam, ours is four pounds.  It relies on hydraulic pressure rather than sheer weight to compact soil and lift the slab, and is much less likely to break down over time. Ultimately, the takeaway is that home repair, just like everything else, is a constantly evolving field, and we’re happy to bring these innovations to your projects!  ...

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Tulsa Architecture

Posted by on Mar 24, 2016 in Oklahoma Weather, Trifusion Foundation Repair Events, Trifusion News | Comments Off on Tulsa Architecture

Tulsa Architecture

Did you know that Tulsa has one of the largest Art Deco districts in the country?  It makes sense: at the turn of the century, Tulsa was a booming oil metropolis.  But our beautiful downtown is only the beginning of a century’s worth of expansion, in the form of neighborhoods that spread out like tree rings, each one an architectural time capsule. Most of Tulsa Metro’s residential areas were built between the 20s and 50s; the further Southeast you go, the newer the homes get.  Tulsa Metro, also known as midtown, includes (but is not limited to) neighborhoods like Cherry Street, The Pearl District, Kendall-Whittier, Riverparks, and Patrick Henry.  A lot of these areas were built before Zink Dam was put in on the Arkansas River, and flooding was even more of a problem than it is now (my mother remembers having severe flood damage in her home during the mid-50s, two blocks in from Riverside).  Consequently, many of these homes are going to be on crawl spaces.  The same holds true for the neighborhoods that extend North from downtown, where neighborhoods like Brady Heights, Greenwood, and North Cheyenne have seen restoration and revitalization, including the addition of “Historic” to their monikers. It wasn’t until the 60s and 70s that Broken Arrow, Bixby, Jenks, and our various other suburbs started seeing significant growth, eventually blending seamlessly with Tulsa Metro.  South of 1-44 and East of Sheridan, South Tulsa and surrounding neighborhoods are largely slab foundations.  Contractors had found that in regions with water tables as high as ours, slab foundations were better for preventing moisture damage to the homes sitting on top of them. Regardless of where you live, I think we can all agree: we wouldn’t have our slice of urban sprawl any other...

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What to Expect When We’re Inspecting

Posted by on Mar 22, 2016 in Trifusion Foundation Repair Events, Trifusion News | Comments Off on What to Expect When We’re Inspecting

What to Expect When We’re Inspecting

Spring is definitely one of our busiest times of year, and this spring is no exception.  But when people call us, all they know is that we’ll come check their home for free – they have no idea what that entails, how much time it will take, etc.  So if you’re thinking of giving us a call, here’s how it all works.   First thing’s first, of course, which is getting you on our schedule.  We usually book about a week to two weeks in advance, and have recently become available to do Saturday afternoon inspections.  Once you’ve booked your time slot, we send out a confirmation letter and give you a call the day before your appointment; we understand that things get busy and sometimes appointments fall through the cracks. The consultation itself is pretty straightforward.  One (or both) of our project surveyors come to your home, talk to you a bit about your concerns, and do a walk-through of the problem area.  They’ll point out the issues they find, and discuss with you what they propose for a solution.  All told, this takes roughly an hour. Using their notes and observations, they draft an official Bid Proposal, which they send to you for approval.  If you have an engineering report, they can also generate a bid proposal based on that, which can be nice for our clients who may not have time to schedule a separate inspection. Now, there are a lot of variables that determine how quickly we can begin fixing your problem, but generally speaking we can get you on the schedule for the following month – for instance, right now we’re booking jobs in April. Through all of this, we encourage our clients to call us any time they have questions, or need something tweaked, or just want to touch base with us.  It’s your home, after all, and we value the trust our clients put in us by allowing us to work on something so important.   And that’s how it all works!  Like I said, we’re already booking jobs in April, and we have consultation slots open through April 14th.  Drop us a line!  Even if we can’t find anything wrong, at least you know there’s nothing to worry about.  ...

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Never a Dull Moment

Posted by on Mar 18, 2016 in Oklahoma Weather, Trifusion Foundation Repair Events, Trifusion News | Comments Off on Never a Dull Moment

Never a Dull Moment

Today, I’m hitting the road and accompanying our general manager to a job site!  It’s important to us to spend time with our clients after a job has been completed, to make sure we’ve done our best and are leaving them with a smile and a fixed problem. I’m definitely bringing my rain coat, though.  As beautiful as the clouds were this morning, they’re one more sign that April showers came early this year! Have a wonderful (and hopefully dry) weekend!...

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FAQ – Interior Piers

Posted by on Mar 16, 2016 in Trifusion Foundation Repair Events | Comments Off on FAQ – Interior Piers

FAQ – Interior Piers

Another question we kept getting over the weekend was about interior piers – namely, do we do them? The short answer is no.  The explanation is a little longer. No one worth their salt will do interior piers anymore, and the reason is because it’s not a good system.  It’s very difficult to get an even distribution of weight on interior piers, and if your house settles, those piers are the foundation equivalent of trying to prop up a tarp full of water by pushing a stick up through the middle.  Instead, for interior settling, polyurethane foam injection is a much more stable and durable fix, and won’t result in future damage like what you see in the attached photo.   As a bonus, polyurethane foam injection is also less invasive, cheaper, and sets up within seconds, which makes the job quicker to complete. Check back later this week for another FAQ!  ...

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FAQ: Peace of Mind

Posted by on Mar 14, 2016 in Trifusion Foundation Repair Events, Trifusion News | Comments Off on FAQ: Peace of Mind

As I said last week, this past weekend the entire Trifusion team was down at Expo Square for the Home and Garden Show.  I love working those kinds of events, because it allows me to talk directly to a lot of people about their needs and concerns. Time and time again, we heard the same thing: homeowners afraid to even get an estimate because they’re convinced they can’t afford the fix. Now, there are some companies that do charge to come out for an estimate, but we don’t.  It’s important to us that we make giving you the information you need an easy process – after all, if you don’t know what you need, you don’t know what to plan for.  On top of that, we do offer several financing options; your home should be a source of comfort, not a source of stress. Thanks to everyone who stopped by our booth to say hello, and thanks to our readers who bore with me through last week’s hiatus!  ...

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Tulsa Home and Garden Show

Posted by on Mar 8, 2016 in Trifusion Foundation Repair Events | Comments Off on Tulsa Home and Garden Show

Hi everyone!  We’re all hands on deck while we prepare for the Tulsa Home and Garden Show (March 10th through 13th) at the Expo Center!  Come visit the Golden Driller on your way in to see us at the Trifusion booth, on the first floor next to the ramp.  Hang out, have a chat, and pick up one of our brand new fridge magnets! Blog posts will resume next week – see you soon!  ...

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Do You Need an Engineer’s Report?

Posted by on Mar 2, 2016 in Buying Or Selling A Home | Comments Off on Do You Need an Engineer’s Report?

One question we get from clients is about engineer’s reports – what is it, do they need one, and what’s the benefit? An engineer’s report is done by a state certified engineer, and is generally an overview of what your home may need by way of repairs.  They’re handy for a few reasons. Unbiased Opinion If you’re going to be comparing home piering or slab lifting quotes from several foundation repair companies (which is a good practice) and you’re not sure what might be needed, an engineer’s report ensures that you have a clear objective.  Each company will review the report and give you an estimate based on what the engineer has outlined – essentially giving you a professional opinion off of which to base any work. Streamlined Process Our company offers free estimates, but many places charge for their initial inspection – it stands to reason, right?  It takes time to come out to a new property and do an assessment.  Oftentimes though, if you have an engineer’s report, companies can give you an estimate based on that, which means instead of each company coming out and giving you their opinion (and potentially charging you for the time), you only have to set aside one day for an engineer.  We prefer to look at the report and the property before we give an estimate, but it still helps us know exactly what to look for, and can give an estimate from the report alone if needed. Peace of Mind There’s a lot to be said for record keeping.  If you’re going to be selling your house, having something that says “here’s what was needed and here’s what we did” is invaluable, both to you and your potential buyer.   All of this being said, an engineer’s report is going to run around $300-$425 (based on square footage), which is on top of the cost of any repairs you may need.  But if you feel that that’s the right way to go, we’d be happy to point you towards a licensed and trusted expert when you call us for your free estimate....

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Weather Patterns – Spring

Posted by on Feb 29, 2016 in Oklahoma Weather | Comments Off on Weather Patterns – Spring

Weather Patterns – Spring

As you’ve probably heard, El Nino has been wreaking havoc on our weather.  We’ve had major flooding over both Thanksgiving and Christmas, 80 degrees and sunny in February – and while not related to the weather, let’s not forget that Oklahoma is now the earthquake capitol of the country. All of these things affect what problems home owners face, and every season is different.  Let’s take a look at what the first blush of spring is doing to our region. Frost Heaves I’m from Alaska, and lived in an area where residential roads weren’t paved.  The city refused to waste the money: every spring the ice melts, the roads thaw, and suddenly there’s a brand new crop of pot holes. But that’s Alaska, and to be expected.  Who expects frost heaves in Oklahoma?  Well, Oklahoman’s do – especially in the last few years. Frost heaves occur when the moisture in the soil freezes.  Ice takes up more space than water, so as the ice crystals expand, so does the soil around them.  Then spring comes and those ice crystals melt, leaving air pockets and compacted areas of soil, altering the terrain.  Because of Oklahoma’s uniquely temperamental weather, this freezing and thawing can happen multiple times over the course of a winter (which only makes the problem worse).   Now, frost heaves don’t just affect our roads, they affect anything sitting on our soil.  So if you see a lot of new pot holes in your street or neighborhood, it might be worth your time to take a look around your home for the signs of settling that I discussed in this post. Flooding Something we’re well aware of and used to is flooding.  Oklahoma, particularly the Northeast, sits on a flood plane that lives up to its name every spring.  When our beautiful thunderstorms hit and bring those heavy rains with them, they knock out any air pockets frost heaves may have left as well as washing away some soil when the water finally drains away.  Thankfully a well-planted yard will help curtail that erosion, but it’s still important to check your home for issues after any major flood. Earthquakes In the grand scheme of things, our earthquakes tend to be on the mild side.  You might feel a little bit of a shake or hear your dishes rattle, but for the most part they’re more a point of interest than a safety hazard. Unless, of course, you’re something in or dependent on the ground that is literally shaking apart.   Our earthquakes may be year-round, but when you combine them with the above two geographically-impactful seasonal hazards, things can get a little more hairy.  That final jolt may be all your driveway needs to spring a new crack, or all your piering needs to settle on one side.  Unfortunately for us, no amount of crepe myrtles will stop an earthquake from affecting our land, so the best thing you can do is be mindful of the shifting geography and, again, be proactive about watching your home for new issues.   Spring is easily the most tumultuous season for Oklahoma.  Once we get through the floods, thunderstorms, and tornadoes it’ll be smooth sailing…right into the triple digits.  So put up your feet and have a nice hot cup of...

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Signs of a Settling Home

Posted by on Feb 26, 2016 in Buying Or Selling A Home | Comments Off on Signs of a Settling Home

Signs of a Settling Home

As promised, today I’m going to talk about how to recognize signs of a settling house. The most obvious indicator is your driveway.  Much like a slab foundation, if you have a paved driveway, that’s going to be a thick layer of concrete over Oklahoma’s silt loam.  If it’s starting to crack, there’s a good chance your foundation could use an inspection.  Similarly, many houses in the Tulsa area have brick or stucco facing.  A crack on the outside of your home (or inside, for that matter) is a pretty clear sign that something is amiss. But there are several indicators that the soil beneath your house has settled, and not all of them are as blatant. For instance, new drafts popping up through window frames and door jambs are great indicators that your house may not be level.  It makes sense: these openings are designed to have 90 degree angles at all corners.  When your house shifts, the frames shift, and while the frame no longer has those perfect angles, the things attached to those frames (the doors or windows themselves) do.  We’ve had clients whose front doors were completely unusable because they were stuck in crooked jambs. Another sign is if you notice tables and chairs no long sitting level.  Now, this could be the piece of furniture itself, but if all the legs measure up properly and you still can’t keep a marble from rolling off, that may be an indication of bigger problems.  To use another client example, we were able to help someone whose bedroom was so uneven that when they laid down on the bed, their feet were higher than their head. Lastly, and this one comes from personal experience, check for excess moisture by your baseboards.  While this could easily be a baseboard problem, the high water table means that if your foundation cracks, ground water may very well seep through and bring its own host of issues. Thanks for reading, now go forth and have a great...

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