FAQ

Postech Northern gets lots of questions about our product, we’ve compiled some of them and the answers on this page.

What load can a pile bear?
Our standard 3.5″ piles achieve 22,500lbs of load capacity in granular soil or silt. The denser the soil (i.e. clay), the higher the load bearing capacity will be. It is during installation that this capacity is determined. While screwing in the last few inches of the pile, the installer validates hydraulic pressure, with the help of a pressure gauge located on the excavator arm. He then can determine, thanks to a precise guide chart, the load bearing capacity of the pile. In loose soil it is possible that extensions may be necessary to reach a more compact soil, and desired capacity.
What distance is recommended between the piles?
Generally, we recommend that the distance between piles not exceed ten (10′) feet however certain engineered applications may allow for spacing in excess of 10 feet.
How much does a pile cost?
It is difficult to determine an exact cost since several factors must be taken into account: The structure to be supported, type of soil, length, region, etc. Because of the increased load bearing capacity of Postech Piles vs. competing, project often require less of our piles. It would be our pleasure to provide you with a fast, no-charge and no-obligation quote.
What happens when you hit a rock?
Our piles are not equipped with a drilling head. However, in the overwhelming majority of cases, the installer will be able to deviate around the rock, to allow the pile to continue its descent. If the rock is really too large, and that construction parameters allow, the pile may be installed at another location. In the case where the pile must be installed in a very precise location, Postech Northern has addition equipment such as drilling bits to assist with this, but these cases are rare; in most cases we are able to excavate and remove rocks on site using our equipment.
Can the piles be installed under an existing structure?
Yes, it is possible to install the piles under an existing structure. However, the proposed location of the piles must be relatively close to the edge of the structure. If the piles must be installed in the middle of a structure, there must be an access to allow the piles to be installed. For example, in the case of a wood patio, the customer may remove some floorboards to allow installation of the piles in a precise location. Check out this blog post for more information on how screw piles can be installed under existing structures.
What area does Postech cover?
We cover the counties of Antigonish, Guysborough on Mainland Nova Scotia. We also cover Inverness and Richmond counties and the remainder of Cape Breton Do the piles rust?No. All Postech Piles are hot-dipped galvanized according to standard CAN/CSA G164, therefore 610 g/m3. Is it necessary to have a protective sheet around the pile to guard against frost heave? Absolutely not, the frost has no hold on the galvanized steel shaft. It is the base of the pile (blade) which acts as an anchor, and which prevents the pile from moving with the frost heave. It is for this reason that the pile must be installed in such a manner so that the blade is BELOW the frost line. In fact, Postech’s Thermal Piles prevent cold air from moving down the inside of the shaft and it is for that reason we can guarantee our piles against movement due to frost heaves.
Have performance tests been completed on Postech piles?
Absolutely, Postech Piles have been tested using many required and vigorous industry standards (see section The Pile/Technical information) and are approved by the Canadian Construction Materials Centre (CCMC #13102-R). This organization is responsible for the evaluation and approval of all products that are recognized as construction materials in Canada. What this means is that Postech Piles meet high quality standards. For your protection it is very important to use piles that have been tested and approved by the CCMC. In fact, most local and state governments, as well as insurance companies request it.
I want to build on an existing asphalt surface, can augured piles be used?
Yes, it’s possible. A small hole is drilled with our Wolverine bit in the location where the pile will be installed. Afterwards, a slight touch-up of the asphalt around the pile will be needed.
Can we install the piles ourselves?
No, the installation of Postech screw piles must be overseen by certified installers, all of which have attended a complete training seminar, and have all the qualifications required to best guide you with your projects. Postech Northern is an authorized installer of Postech screw piles.
Do I have to call before I dig or arrange to locate any existing utility lines that could be underground?
What’s important is that you know if there are certain installations buried on your property at the locations where you wish to have augured piles installed, (water main, electrical cables, sewer, gas main, or all other underground installations). If you do not know what installations are buried on your property, it will be difficult for our installers to know. Please check with your local (town or city) municipal government for location of underground installations.