Block foundation walls could possibly be the king of concrete construction. If you are researching various ways to create a new building or foundation on your property, you may have seen lots pop up about block foundations. This concrete material, utilizing cinderblocks, mortar, and rebar, is a very popular option for many reasons. But first, let’s go over exactly what it is, some structures that are ideal for this installation, and foundation requirements to consider when it comes to inspection. At the end of the article, review some frequently asked questions about block wall foundation that others like you regularly inquire about before diving into their projects.
What Is a Block Foundation Wall?
When laying the substructure of a building there are two options for using concrete. Concrete is the best material for base structures because it is a material that lasts a lifetime, can withstand all elements, and will not deteriorate over time. This cannot be said of weaker materials like wood, that, while beautiful, are unfit for upholding the weight of a house or commercial building. Many people are familiar with and recognize poured concrete as an option. However, a better option is that of a block foundation.
A block base wall is constructed of stacked cinder blocks, lain like bricks over each other in sub sequential rows, and filled with mortar. These walls will vary in height depending on the weight they are bearing. For extra reinforcement on more demanding structures, rebar is stuck through the mortar. These foundations can support the entire foundation of a building or go vertical to create whole standing structures.
A block wall has many uses aside from foundations, as commercial, industrial, and residential structures can be built from them. They can be used as retaining walls and parts of varying buildings. For example, they are often used in the creation of sheds, garages, and mobile homes.
Block Foundation Structures
Sheds are the most trendy of all block base constructions at the moment. For a low cost, a block concrete company such as Phoenix Block Wall Experts can build one in your backyard in a minimal amount of time. While there are many tutorials online suggesting how to attempt this project on your own, it is recommended you hire the expertise of masonry contractors who are aware of all the requirements of constructing your own buildings. Once you have one, people are finding themselves using these sheds as guest homes, tiny houses, additional workspaces, and even Airbnb's. The construction of one of these sheds is low-cost and high value, providing additional living space to your existing property. The greatest part about concrete sheds is that they are insulated and stay cool in hot regions like Phoenix, Arizona.
Considering a mobile home? Did you know the availability of an existing foundation can make or break a loan? Get a head start on the process by choosing cinderblocks for your base. Block foundation for mobile homes increases its stability and chances of longevity, as these economical options usually don’t include an understructure. They also can raise the structure and prevents — you guessed it — water damage. It also helps cement this home as a more permanent addition to your property.
How about concrete block for a garage? This addition offers a cool space, thanks to the natural conditioning tendencies of the material, that can go up quickly on your property. The material offers many benefits for this kind of stand-alone garage. Some of these include wind resistance, fire resistance, energy efficiency, and moisture resistance. Since people often store the majority of their possessions and valuables in their garage, it makes sense to construct one out of a material that best protects these objects.
When building such a foundation there are a few requirements. These are requirements enforced by building zone regulations to ensure safe and lasting construction. When considering cinderblock for your project, there are a few things to remember. The most important of these include footings, basement walls, and crawl spaces.
Footings are usually constructed from cast-in-place concrete. This should be done on native soil, but if it is unfit, gravel or compacted soil is substituted. If these are not placed below the frost depth, they can impact the structural soundness due to freezing water in the soil that can cause damage.
Basement walls should be constructed as water-resistant as possible. The backfill procedure protocol should be closely followed to prevent damage. This includes proper bracing and early floor diaphragm installation. Do not operate heavy equipment on the backfill, as it is not made to support that force.
The requirements for these are also centered around water damage prevention. Moisture buildup can over in unvented crawl spaces, so louvered vents are often used to fill the ventilation requirements. You can also use vapor retarders and floor coverings with the assistance of this task.
These requirements have to be met when it comes time for a foundation inspection. An inspection involves the assessment of the integrity of the construction basis. This includes an examination of ventilation, weight-bearing, potential threats and weaknesses, and water resistance and damage.
These inspections and requirements ensure that you can avoid needing to spend additional costs on block foundation repair. Block foundation repair estimates vary greatly, ranging from a few hundred to almost $10,000 dollars, depending on the extent of the damage. Foundation restoration is exhausting and tedious work, requiring too much of a job for something that could have been avoided from the beginning. That’s why it is crucial to invest in your structure the first time around and follow the extensive requirements. Block wall contractors near you are already well-versed in the process of block wall foundation installation and can take on any and all projects you can imagine.
Frequently Asked Questions:
There are some frequently asked questions people have when considering block foundations for their construction projects. You need not research block foundation contractors near me to find the answers to these questions, but instead, go to the experts. For additional questions about cinder block wall installations, call or reach out to Phoenix Block Wall Experts in Phoenix, Arizona.
Are Block Foundations Good?
Block foundations are good and are the choice of most engineers and contractors for new homes. This is because, compared to a poured concrete foundation, cinder blocks offer more compression strength, meaning they can hold more weight per unit. When building, more weight-holding abilities equates to being able to build vertically on a strong foundation. Because concrete arrives on sight solid, there is no chance of curing in the drying process, which can impede construction and lead to unpredicted cost inflations.
Which is Cheaper? Poured or Block Foundation?
When investing in a concrete foundation, it is important to keep in mind that this is the hardest repair to complete if anything occurs. That’s why investing initially is important and can save you costs down the road. Poured concrete requires more onsite labor and special equipment, which is where its cost comes in. With block foundation, you are paying for the price of the concrete and construction of the block before arrival. On average, the National Homeowners Association quotes an 8-inch concrete cinder block at $1.50 per square foot, and installation is another $1.00 per square foot. Poured concrete also comes in at just under $3 per cubic foot, but also needs finishing work at around $1.50 per cubic foot.
How Much Does It Cost to Lay A Block Foundation?
Home advisor.com quotes a cinder block foundation between $11,000 and $15,000. This is for the average home foundation but can vary spending on the style of foundation you choose to lay. While some people choose full basements, others go with a simple crawlspace, or even stem and pier. A full basement foundation costs around $40,000 on average, whereas a stem and pier foundation sits around $12,000 on average. These prices vary greatly depending on the size of your project and the selection of a reliable contractor.
How Long Does a Concrete Block Foundation Last?
Concrete block foundations last a lifetime, with over a 100-year life expectancy. There is no need to ever replace a block concrete foundation, though other parts of your home need more repairs over the course of your ownership. The lifespan of a block foundation is also dependent on proper grading, an initial investment that cannot be forgone. Proper waterproofing is necessary to ensure concrete does not crack from environmental stresses. Bituminous coating lasts roughly 10 years and can be maintained to increase resistance to water damage.
Block Foundation vs Poured Concrete
When deciding to build a new structure people often like to weigh the options of whether to use block foundation or poured concrete. We already know that the main pro of poured concrete is its lateral strength. Aside from that, there is not much which poured concrete does that block foundation doesn’t. On top of this, block foundation is a less labor-intensive process and does not require complex wood structures to create. Block bases are also very easily customized to the project you are building.
If you have decided that block foundation is right for you, reach out to the authorities of the craft, Phoenix Block Wall Experts in Phoenix, Arizona. They specialize in block foundation installations for many different applications, including the ideas listed throughout this article. Ready to start constructing your dreams? Give them a call today, or fill out their online form, to get a free quote on your next building project.