Restumping Brisbane

Steady as she goes: Securing Queenslanders against subsidence

With the distinctive raised Queenslander home design comes an inherent vulnerability to subsidence and shifting not as common with single-story dwellings. After tackling countless tilting and dropping Queenslanders across Brisbane over 20+ years, our structural team felt compelled to share some hard-won insights into rectifying these icons’ stability issues. While cases differ, several proven methods exist to halt and prevent the gradual destabilisation these properties are prone to long-term when original foundations get overwhelmed.

The first step involves determining the specific failure points involved. While visible exterior symptoms typically involve the most dramatic sinking in certain areas, the real culprits lie underground out of sight. It takes an expert eye to spot and measure structural components like corroded stumps, termite-damaged bearers or inadequately compacted soils under the home contributing to the visible house movement above. Once identified, we can deploy targeted solutions.

Considering the Surrounding Landscape

We thoroughly inspect general site drainage, planting bed locations, tree root proximity and terrain contours for patterns indicating extensive moisture exposure on vulnerable foundation points. Mitigating runoff or overflow issues through landscaping improvements or drainage system enhancements helps.

Inspecting Inside for Termite Signs

In addition to external subsidence symptoms visible around the home’s lower perimeter, we also check thoroughly for signs of termites or rot internally which remain obscured without invasive inspection of subfloor joists and bearers. Catching and treating pest destruction early is key.

Monitoring Movement Over Time

We advise homeowners to keep a log tracking subsidence rates through periodic measurement comparisons rather than relying on single inspections alone. Understanding shifting velocity informs foundation augmentation urgency and techniques. Rapid dropping signals greater priority.

Improving Ventilation Underneath

Aiding airflow via added vents or vapour permeable sealing in enclosed subfloor areas helps drying and inhibits premature deterioration in humid Brisbane climate. Keeping foundation materials well ventilated reduces decay risks substantially.

Future Flood Preparation

For properties in flood zones, we also advise sealing external wall cavities and utilising waterproof structural materials during restumping to improve water resistance protecting homes when the unavoidable eventually occurs. An ounce of flood mitigation today prevents a pound of cure tomorrow.

Tactics We Employ to Halt Queenslander Subsidence

  • Moisture Control Improving drainage and vapour barriers around the base slows continued erosion compromising structurally key sub home elements over time. Surface water management prevents conditions decaying supports quickly.
  • Reinforcing Foundations Steel screw piling stumps installed alongside suspect existing posts provide immediate stabilisation. We also excavate and pour fresh pad footings wherever integrity gets compromised underneath.
  • Bearer Repairs We sister new steel beams alongside any degraded timber bearers still salvageable or replace them entirely where too decayed, reconnecting them securely to foundation poles.

In summary, a steady hand combating Queenslander subsidence requires getting underneath to pinpoint and repair failing root causes, not just the surface results. Through meticulous inspections, improving drainage and surgical reinforcement of destabilised components, we’ve levelled and secured hundreds of Brisbane’s beloved properties over decades. Don’t despair if your home starts to slant and sink – solutions exist! Call us anytime to schedule an assessment and halt the subsidence for good through strengthening your home’s structural backbone.

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