Frequently Asked Questions

When do you do a geotechnical investigation?

Geotechnical investigations are conducted for studies related to settlement, expansion, landslides, retaining walls, seepage and earthquakes. 

What are typical geotechnical problems?

Some geotechnical problems include differential settlement, expansion/swelling, hydro-consolidation, landslides and expansion. 

What are typical geotechnical repair methods?

French drain, Compaction grouting, Mat foundation, Underpinning 

What should I do about a crack in my basement?

If you are noticing your home gradually slanting to one side, you are probably aware that you have some foundation problems. However, there are some less obvious causes of foundation problems that will help you identify issues before your home structurally deteriorates. Keep on the lookout for things like windows and doors becoming stuck or misaligned. Watch for cracks in basements, slabs, and on sheetrock walls in the living areas of the house. Water puddles that form around the base of your home may also indicate foundation problems, as can upheaval of floors or floors that gradually become sloped. 

What causes basement cracks?


Hot and dry conditions cause soil to pull away from your foundation. Settlement due to this foundation moisture imbalance could cause cracks to appear throughout your home.


Tree roots dehydrate the soil beneath a home causing soil shrinkage and differential settlement of your home.

Plumbing Leaks

Water from leaky plumbing is often a major contributor to foundation problems especially in slab on grade construction.


Improper drainage or waterproofing can lead to bowed basement walls with diagonal cracks, excess moisture build up, which could erode or consolidate soils. Excessive moisture may cause expansive soils to swell and heave.

Why do I need a professional survey?

The phrase “It’s just a survey” can cost you money. Saving $1000 by not doing a thorough and precise survey before work begins on a $100,000+ project seems petty when you are looking back at all the problems it would have saved. An accurate survey will make any project flow more smoothly, as it allows designers to spot and avoid trouble areas.  More efficient use of land is also another plus, as legally building closer to property lines can be achieved through planning. The final cost of any survey will depend on the location, size, kind of survey, and the difficulties encountered.