Sagging Floor Joist & Girder Repair in Alabama, Tennessee, and Georgia Crawl Spaces

If your home has sagging floor joists and girders, you’re dealing with a problem that manifests itself throughout the entire building. A problem such as this can be caused by many possible factors, but are usually the result of three common issues:

Inadequate Supports: The support system under your home has too few support posts to hold up the structure.

Weakened Floor Joists & Girders: Moisture, rot, termites, wood-boring insects, or other destructive forces have damaged your structural wood.

Support Settlement: Weak supporting soils underneath the crawl space supports have caused the crawl space supports to sink into the ground.

AFS Foundation & Waterproofing Specialists can help solve sagging floors with the help of our crawl space experts. We offer free estimates throughout Huntsville, Birmingham, Nashville, Chattanooga, Columbus and surrounding areas – schedule yours today!

What’s damaging your floor joists & girders?

If Mother Nature is the cause of your damage, there can be many possible forces hard at work on your crawl space’s structural wood. Determining which one you’re dealing with can be difficult to do!

Sometimes, a wood surface can be virtually covered in mold, but will still show little evident structural damage. In other cases, the wood may appear to be strong and untouched, while subterranean termites have hollowed the wood out from the inside.

Before you can consider a permanent repair for your crawl space, you will need to address the moisture and humidity that feeds mold, rot, pests, and other unwanted forces in your crawl space. The key to this is to keep your crawl space dry by installing a crawl space vapor barrier system and by running a powerful crawl space dehumidifier system.

Six Common Ways Floor Joists & Girders Can Be Damaged

SettleStop Floor Support repair

Crawl Space Floor Joist Jacks

Crawl space joist supports are steel, adjustable support posts that are installed to repair sagging floors.

These reinforcing joists install quickly in crawl spaces — with a complete installation taking about a day — and provide a permanent solution.

Our SettleStop Floor Supports is designed with corrosion-resistant galvanized steel, ensuring that it will be strong and adjustable for decades to come. A unique base of engineered fill prevents sinking support posts when soils below are weak, maximizing effectiveness.

More about our Crawl Space Jacks

Reinforcing joists & girders

Compared to other sources of structural damage (frost heave, foundation settlement, bowing foundation walls, etc.) it’s relatively easy and inexpensive to reinforce joists and girders in a structurally damaged crawl space.

Girder and joist jacks (also known as “steel lally columns”) can be installed at key locations along the structure. Once in place, the floor can be “jacked up” in an attempt to lift the floor back to a level position. If a contractor finds a joist is severely damaged, a sister beam can be installed alongside the normal one for extra strength.

At AFS Foundation & Waterproofing Specialists, we’ve seen just about everything! Below are just a few of the sagging floor joists the experts in our network have encountered:

The “Bulb Of Influence”

No matter how strong your floor joist supports are, they can only bear as much weight as the soils underneath them. Put simply, if the supports are sinking, your floor is going to sink with them.

To address this, our contractors take advantage of something called the “bulb of influence”.

Before we install your support posts, we excavate a hole, filling it in with compressed, crushed stone. Then we place a concrete base on top of the center of this cube and position the jack post above that.

This cube of compressed, crushed stone disperses the weight pressing down into the soil outwards, dispersing it to approximately 10% of the pressure present at the bearing surface.

This means that even if the soils under the jack posts aren’t strong enough to support great weights, your system will still be more than sufficient to support the structure above.

Light-duty joist braces found in big box stores, should not be as permanent supports. These joist braces are made out of steel that can rust and corrode, making them difficult or impossible to readjust if the support post sinks down in the soil.

How do other floor joist support methods measure up?

There are many different methods of crawl space repair that contractors are using today, and some are much better than others, but all of them work at least some of the time.

Of course, if these repair methods never worked, then they would not be used anymore. However, at AFS Foundation & Waterproofing Specialists, our reputation and written warranty depends on using solutions that will be permanent — and will work all of the time. The chart below lays out the facts:

Additional ShimmingConcrete Masonry Unit (CMU) ColumnsLight-Duty Jack PostsThe SettleStop Floor Support System
Provides a solution for floor joist bracing that is spaced too far apart to provide proper support   
Can be combined with a moisture barrier system to repair sagging floor joists and girders that are damaged by rot and mold
Are appropriate for installation in areas where the soils cannot support heavy loads, and would normally cause joist supports to sink 
Can be installed without “overlifting” the foundation, which is known to cause additional structural damage   
Adjustments can be easily and reliably made, should the joist brace settle into the soil
Installs in the home within a day 
The girder jacks and joist jacks provide a high load-bearing capacity for structural support  

We repair sagging floor joists & girders in crawl spaces!

At AFS Foundation & Waterproofing Specialists, our experts have the experience, training, and warrantied products that you’re looking for! With a fast, non-invasive installation, we can provide a lasting solution for your home that will restore your structure and avoid further, potentially expensive, damage.

It costs you nothing to meet with one of our specialists for a professional inspection and written cost quote! To schedule a crawl space repair quote, contact us by phone or e-mail today!

We proudly serve Huntsville, Birmingham, Nashville, Chattanooga, Columbus and many surrounding areas.