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BASEMENT UNDERPINNING
CONTRACTORS TORONTO

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Basement Underpinning

Renovating your basement for various reasons is essential to achieve more space and create an extra room such as a playroom, study room or a small theater for family movie night. Whatever your reasons are, basement underpinning in Toronto is one of the basement renovations that will also help add value to your home.

 

The truth of the matter is that buildings are built over a strong foundation, but with time, it can weaken due to certain factors. Weak foundations can be attributed to a pest infestation, leakages or weak structural faults caused by shifting earth or floods. To counteract the weakened foundation, you can consider underpinning as a preventive measure to keep your building strong and standing.

What is basement underpinning?

So what exactly is basement underpinning? It is the act of adding bulk beneath your basement to repair weakened and faulty basements. It practically involves digging up soil beneath the basement so as to lower the basement surface.

 

Once the soil is removed, new concrete is added to the extended surface, below the initial foundation making the building stronger. In addition to that, the basement room also has more height and you can modify it into anything you like.

underpinning process

Our Recent Underpinning Projects

The parties involved in underpinning

Underpinning is not an easy task and it requires someone with skills and experience to properly carry out the job. To successfully and legally allow your home basement to be lowered, a few parties need to be present to conduct the process accordingly.

 

First of all, as the owner of the building, you need to be present to authorize and monitor that the underpinning is going according to your plans and expectations. But, before the process even takes place, you need to acquire approval permits from the Toronto Municipal Offices. In addition to that, your house needs to be inspected by the building city inspector in your area and determine whether or not it is allegeable for underpinning.

 

This is mostly based on the foundations and the positioning of the building. If any signs are detected of default and further damage if the contractor goes ahead with the digging, then your house is put out of the list for basement underpinning and other procedures can be considered. Finally, an architect is also needed to perform structural planning and ensure that the process is going on smoothly and conduct the renovation step-by-step until the end.

 

The architect is also in direct contact with the home owner to give updates on how the underpinning is progressing. He/she also provides information on whether the process is going on fine or there are any hitches experienced.

Toronto Basement underpinning cost

As the owner of the building which is being underpinned, there are certain fees and charges you are subjected to. The most obvious fees is that paid for the construction and installation of the concrete slabs and other works that are done during the procedures.

 

However, the basement underpinning fees will vary depending on the intensity of the job and the square foot of concrete slabs added. As a Toronto home owner, who has been considering basement underpinning, it is important to identify yourself with the overall cost you are most likely to spend.

 

Since basement underpinning is not easy, the fees may be a little higher because a lot of work is needed and has to be carries out carefully. Needless say, the numbers of slabs used also determine the price range if the process.

Lowering 100 years old house

Steps of basement underpinning

It is necessary to prepare the house basement before starting the underpinning process. The duration of this stage of work varies in each project. It all depends on what condition the basement was in and what it was used for. It is necessary to take out all things and demolish additional structures that could be placed in the basement. Disconnection of sewerage from the city system is carried out at the preparation stage. The main stage of basement underpinning can be started after all preparatory work has been done.

Basement underpinning is a complex type of work that can affect the stability of an entire home. The architect calculates the load on the walls and divides them into special sections. Each section is 2 to 3 feet long and workers dig them in at intervals to keep the building stable. Usually, the sections are divided into 3-4 stages for the basement underpinning of residential houses in Toronto.

Wooden formwork is installed in the excavated sections for further concrete pouring. An inspection must be carried out before the concrete is poured. The inspector checks the correct installation of all elements and only after that the concrete is poured. Work with the following sections begins when the concrete hardens. The sequence of actions will be the same as in the first case. Once the underpinning of the entire perimeter is complete, you can move on to the next stage of work.

The next step is the excavation of the center section in the basement. This is a rather laborious process during which the bulk of the soil is excavated from the basement. This work is carried out with small excavators whenever possible. This stage can also be performed manually using shovels if there is no open access to the basement. This stage will take about a week in this case. Also at this stage, the internal load-bearing walls are gradually demolished. Jack posts are temporarily installed in their place to prevent the house from collapsing. All work is carried out according to the drawings and under the supervision of engineers.

No wonder the basement is the wettest place in the house due to its location. It is necessary to install a quality drainage system to prevent leaks and dampness in rooms that have just been renovated. There are several ways of drainage and we discuss this stage personally with each client. It will also be possible to replace all plumbing systems during this stage. This will allow you to upgrade all the pipes in the basement without the need for further demolition of the concrete floor and walls.

Moisture inside the basement can come from almost anywhere. Installing a good drainage system is not enough. Water can seep out of the walls and from under the foundation. Special waterproofing layers are installed to prevent this problem. Delta membrane is installed on the interior side of the walls which protects your basement from the dampness of the walls. The new foundation level has been completely excavated and gravel is laid on the ground to provide foundation waterproofing. These protective measures will ensure that your basement is protected from leakage and excessive moisture for many years.

It is worth taking care of the insulation of the basement before laying the concrete. This room is partially underground and heating it can be quite problematic. The best solution to this problem is to install a radiant heating system and a special insulating layer. This layer helps prevent moisture from entering the concrete floor that will be installed in the next step.

Installing a radiant heating system is much easier and cheaper to do at this stage before the concrete floor is poured. If you do not plan to use this system yet, you should still consider installing it in the future. If you decide to install this type of heating in a couple of years, then you will have to spend a significantly larger amount of money due to the demolition of the concrete floor.

The final step of basement underpinning is the pouring of the concrete slab. all plumbing and electrical utilities must be installed up to this point as they will be hidden in the concrete. The concrete must be laid smoothly. This will create the best conditions for future flooring. This is the last step of basement underpinning. Remains to wait for the concrete to dry and carry out a general cleaning after the construction works.

additional works

Basement underpinning may vary slightly for each home. It depends on the structure of the house, how the basement was used before and what was installed in it. Based on this, we provide additional services that can be performed at the basement underpinning stage.

Exterior waterproofing

Exterior waterproofing

As we said earlier, waterproofing is an important part of protecting any home. We can offer our customers exterior wall waterproofing services for a higher level of protection. This type of work is sometimes difficult to implement due to the various features of the house. For example, when you have a common wall with a neighboring house. Read more about outdoor waterproofing in this article.

Installing sump pump

Water may eventually begin to accumulate in each basement. It can get into the basement from open windows, cracks in the walls, or if the waterproofing is damaged. Water can cause significant damage to the structure of your home in the long run.

It is recommended to install a sump pump to prevent water accumulation in the basement. You can read more about all the benefits and how to install sump pumps in this article.

Relocating the current heating system

Many house basements have heating systems installed. Homeowners can change the layout of rooms in a basement after underpinning which can affect the layout of existing water heaters. Our company will relocate the water heating system in the basement at the request of the client. The cost of this work is individual and depends on many factors that we will discuss at the work planning stage.

Basement walkouts

Basement walkout can be a great solution for every home. A separate exit from the basement will be a great solution for those who rent it out. This will allow residents to contact less and get a separate entrance. It is also a convenient opportunity to move from the basement to the backyard.

Basement walks outs are a separate building process that requires preparation and planning. You can learn more about this process in this article. Also, our experts can answer all your questions during the estimate.

Basement walks outs

Our Work from Clients’ View

Basement underpinning interior

The value in basement underpinning

Basement underpinning is one of the most valued procedures that involve lowering the basement foundation to increase its stability. It may be because of the value it adds to your home in terms of space and basement height, but it generally is a good measure of basement renovations.

 

Unlike in other methods of basement lowering, basement underpinning increases the height of the basement since the concrete slab is added directly beneath the foundation that had been created earlier on. With new developments in the building and construction industries, the basements in the traditional homes can now be modernized from a storage compact room to a more useful space.

 

Basement underpinning in Toronto is also of value since it can be a possible rental income where you rent it to someone to live there, a way to a dryer home and improved air flow and quality since the floors are no longer damp and smelly.

The dangers of underpinning

Despite the benefits that basement underpinning offers, there are dangers associated with the procedure and building. The worst that can befall a building under basement underpinning is the collapsing or sinking down of the building. In case of full collapse, the damages may spread to your neighbor’s home if your proximity is very close like most urban buildings are.

 

Other dangers are posed to the contractor and the workers who may experience exposure to harmful fumes from the machines and materials being used. In rare occasions, one may fall into the excavated ground accidentally and get seriously injured.

 

So, if you are thinking of underpinning your home, then have a look at various insurance options you have and if any feels right, then insure your home in case of any damages that may occur during basement underpinning.

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Basements underpinning company

How to choose Toronto Basement Underpinning Contractor

Basement underpinning is a complex construction process that requires careful planning and control. It is very important to choose a professional company that will carry out these works. A homeowner should pay attention to several important factors before choosing a construction company.

 

First of all, it is necessary to contact qualified specialists who have been working in this field for many years. Another important factor will be the choice of a local company. Contractors know residential building arrangements, government work requirements, and other small details when working in a particular area.

 

VMB Group has been performing basement underpinning in Toronto and near cities for over 15 years. Our team of specialists guarantees an individual approach to each client, high-quality work, and a long warranty period. Fill out the form or call right now and sign up for a free estimate where we will discuss all the details of the upcoming work.

frequently asked questions

The cost of drawings directly depends on the complexity of the work and is individual for each project. Professional architects quote a minimum price of $2,000. Any additional work that appears on the drawings and requires permission from the government will affect the cost of this work.

Basement underpinning primarily works with a large amount of soil. The best season for this type of work will be summer. The soil is usually dry and easy to dig at this time of the year. You may experience heavy rain or frost if you plan to build at other times of the year. This greatly complicates the workflow.

Every basement is at least partially underground. This makes it difficult to install large windows and fill the rooms with natural light. The design of the house in some cases allows you to install high enough windows to provide the basement with natural light. You should also consider a system of high-quality artificial lighting for a comfortable stay in the basement.

The height of the basement after underpinning depends on the features of the house and the preferences of its owner. If you want to build living rooms in the basement, then 8 feet will be optimal. You don't have to feel discomfort from low ceilings while spending time in one of the rooms. The height of the basement in some cases is performed at 9 feet. This visually expands the rooms, but this height is not acceptable in every house.

Basement underpinning in Toronto involves strengthening and deepening your home's foundation. Safety of living in the house during this process depends on type of work being carried out. Recommended to move out of the house If there is full basement lowering. There will be a lot of dust and noise during renovation work. Also this work will affect structural integrity of the house. Don’t need worry about your home during renovations. Our team ensures highest safety standards. We constantly monitor the site to ensure safety of your home throughout entire process.

Improper basement underpinning can have serious consequences for homeowners. Incorrectly underpinned foundation can lead to structural instability of the house. This can lead to cracks in walls, uneven floors, and even collapse in rare cases. Additional problems that can arise include mold growth, water damage, and worsening air quality inside house. Cost of correcting these mistakes may exceed original project budget. VMB Group has been carrying out basement underpinning projects for many years and has huge experience in this field. Our specialists guarantee compliance with all standards, as well as safety and durability of your home for many years.

Homeowners must complete several preparatory steps before starting underpinning process. Remove all items from basement to prevent damage and make access for the work team. Informing neighbors about upcoming work will help manage expectations regarding noise and potential disruptions. You must also obtain all necessary permits before starting work. Our company will give advice on preparation stage and will also help you with all difficulties that may arise during renovation stage.

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