The foundation of a house represents the structural element on which the whole construction rests, the loads being transmitted, through the walls, directly to it. For this reason, the foundation must meet some very special requirements that are generally related to strength and stability.

If you intend to build a house or simply like to have information in any field, find out how the foundation of a building should be built correctly, so that its durability is maintained over time.

Land preparation for foundation

Building a foundation in construction is a complex process, on which depends an entire building, but also the adjacent ones, and sometimes even people’s lives. For this reason, any mistake must be avoided so that no problems arise in the implementation of the work.

The foundation ground is the first aspect you should pay attention to because its characteristics can say a lot about its shortcomings and valences. A weak foundation ground will need reinforcement, because it will not be able to support the effort and loads coming from the weight of a building. Sandy soils or those close to water sources require special attention and careful evaluation in order to build a strong foundation.

To check the foundation ground, you must make a geotechnical study before starting the construction works. The geotechnical study means, in fact, a set of measurements and verifications of the soil, which will clarify what its characteristics are.

These characteristics can be determined by laboratory studies, and, depending on them, you can decide the measures to be taken to strengthen the field.

The geotechnical study will also highlight other aspects: the type of soil, its behavior at seismic level, the depth of frost, the depth at which the groundwater is located and the slope of the soil. 

Realization of the project

The design stage is very important because, at this point, the loads can be calculated and the behavior of the construction under loads can be determined. According to the structural modeling, the type of foundation required can be determined so that the strength of the building is ensured.

The design will highlight problem areas and provide the right solutions to address these requirements.

There will be two stages in the design. One will focus on manual mathematical calculations, which will show whether or not the foundation was designed to withstand, and the second will perform experimental modeling on the computer to see exactly how the building behaves under load.

Field measurement

After the geotechnical study has been carried out and the safety measures have been taken into account, it is time for the measurements related to the subsequent excavations. These measurements can be made either manually or by topography, and have the role of drawing the shape of the foundation, in order to perform the excavations.

The tracing of the shape must coincide with the specifications provided by the designer, as he calculates the foundation so that it can withstand the demands. In the case of deviations, even minor ones, the whole calculation changes and, consequently, the behavior of the foundation and the building.

Carrying out the excavations

The excavation for the foundation can be done both manually and mechanized, with the specification that, although it seems much easier to use mechanized excavation, certain types of foundations will require manual intervention.

When making the excavations, the dimensions offered by the designer are taken into account, in this case the dimensions in the field of the foundation: length, width and depth. It is again very important that these dimensions are respected, as even the depth plays a major role in the stability of the foundation.

This is not a randomly chosen dimension, but one calculated and established in the project, depending on the characteristics of the terrain.

Concrete pouring

The quality of concrete is very important when it comes to foundations. The concrete needs to be of superior quality and have very high mechanical strength. Construction regulations recommend the use of C12 / 15 concrete or, where appropriate, C16 / 20.

These concrete names are, in fact, the B200 and B250 equivalents of the old regulations with the specific name.

It is recommended that the casting be continuous at the foundations, mechanized as much as possible and directly from the slats. It is necessary that, after pouring, the concrete be vibrated, in order to eliminate air gaps in the structure, gaps that can weaken the structure.

Gaps should be avoided because if the loads are distributed on time and the distribution is made on the gap area, it could give way, weakening the overall strength of the building.

Fitting the fittings

The reinforcement of the foundations is very important, because the reinforcement takes over the concrete loads, helping to a strong support. Basically, the steel used for reinforcement can, in case the concrete collapses, maintain a standing structure, precisely due to the superior mechanical strengths.

The steel resists very well, both compression and bending, and this helps the construction by providing it with a surplus of strength. The foundation reinforcements are made of steel bars and stirrups, arranged constructively in the vertical plane, while the bars are placed in the horizontal plane.

The foundation is then poured to the elevation level, ie until it rises above the ground. From here, a new constructive element continues, namely the base of the building.

Without a properly made foundation, a construction could not withstand. Also, without a land being able to support a foundation, even if it is properly built, nothing would be possible. For this reason, all the stages of building a foundation become very important and, at some point, it will not be possible to do something without going through the related stage.

Making the foundations correctly is vital because a well-made house starts with a balanced foundation. In this way, the dangers are diminished, and the chances of that building lasting over time increase significantly.

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