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Guidelines for Diagnosing Heave Subsidence and Settlement – ABSTRACT

The severity of misdiagnosis of these foundations are taught in classes throughout the world. There is a gap between engineering, Structural Engineering, Geo surveying, and the regular concrete contractor. This huge gap is where concrete-repairman has identified the missing link to answer the unknown questions that has only been speculation until now, proven, by James Belville

Which Way Is It Moving?

Guidelines for Diagnosing Heave, Subsidence and Settlement

Ron Kelm, P.E. | Nicole Wylie, P.E. | Forensic Engineers Inc. | Houston TX |


Heave, subsidence and settlement are all descriptions of soil movement that commonly affect residential and other lightly loaded foundations. Laypeople in the local foundation industry commonly refer to all three movement types as simply “settlement”. Many foundation repair contractors in the business of lifting foundations do not guarantee their work for upward movements caused by heave, rather only the downward movements caused by subsidence and settlement. Misdiagnoses of heave, subsidence, and settlement are common, sometimes invalidating the repairs and warranties, and are usually due to the lack of understanding of the mechanisms behind each type of movement. This paper addresses these three movement types: their definitions, their causes, their diagnoses, their symptoms, and the appropriate repairs for each movement type. Other movement types are also briefly described.


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