Resistance Piles or piers are steel rods that are driven into the ground using a hydraulic jack. Not ideal for new construction, resistance piles require a foundation that can handle a concentrated load. Resistance Piles or push piers debuted in the 1800’s in the Northeast. Builders chose this method because they were able to get below the frost line and make a lasting correction to failing foundations.
Resistance piles are a series of hollow pipes pushed into the ground using a hydraulic ram until they reach the load-bearing strata or bedrock, they are then anchored to the structure. The weight of the structure became the resistance keeping the piles in place creating stability, lift and leveling the foundation. Added stability can be accomplished by filling the hollow pipe with grout and rebar. Once the foundation starts to move, the resistance piles are doing their jobs.
Resistance piles are great options for tight spaces and heavier structures. Unfortunately, once installed it’s not easy to move, so if you added onto a building using resistance piles, you would need to add more resistance piles to keep the integrity of the foundation intact.