SLAB HEAVE IN MELBOURNE
Slab heave is the movement in ground slabs caused by the
saturation or drying of soils.
This is most common in highly reactive soils which are typically found in Melbourne’s western
suburbs and inner-city areas.
Some of the characteristics that indicate slab heave can be picked up with a visual inspection and
include the following:
- Stepping in brickwork
- Cracks to rendered walls
- Cracks in plaster
- Cracked floor tiles
- Doors not closing properly
- Windows not opening
One of the most common causes of slab heave is saturated soil surrounding the house. Soil can become saturated as a result of a broken sewer or stormwater pipes as well as poor surface drainage.
As the owner of a dwelling the first thing that should be done is to rule out any breaks or leaks in your drainage.
At Austest, our main focus is on CCTV drainage inspections. This is undoubtedly the best method of ruling out any defects in the drainage. However, this is not the only method we use.
CCTV drainage inspections will locate major breaks and defects in pipes but will not always pick up leaking pipes or cracked junctions etc. We also use different methods that set us apart from our competitors.
We have the technology to pressure test below ground drains and to section off drainage so that we can localise the areas where the leakage is occurring.
At Austest we also provide detailed plans showing accurate positions of drains so that they can be used by engineers to determine areas of lift or subsidence.
If broken pipes are then located and repaired, this helps to relieve the stress in the soil caused by heave.
Due to the long monitoring process involved in most slab heave jobs, there is nothing worse than for a client to have a CCTV drainage inspection done by a third party and then told there are no defects.
We have received many calls where this is the case. We have then gone ahead and had our technicians inspect the site only to find defects. This has then made the process for the property owner an even longer one.
At Austest, our technicians are fully trained in the correct methods for drainage inspections. Anyone can put a camera in a drain but it takes an expert to survey them correctly and determine the results of the survey.