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Deep Pinning – some interesting facts…

  • Deep Pinning is a permanent repair which does not lose its effectiveness over time – the root cause of the problem is addressed, as well as the symptoms.
  • Most underpinning repairs we undertake are to footings which are well specified – even generous footings are susceptible to significant settlement if the foundation conditions change.  No footing can suspend itself above a settled foundation for more than a metre or two before breaking and allowing settlement.  Infact, concrete footings need to crack (on the tension side of the footing – typically the top face) before the internal steel reinforcing even starts to help the situation.  Often this consolidation, while deemed acceptable by the codes of Standards Australia, is enough for a brick wall to rotate outwards and cause significant cracking and destabilisation.
  • Requires far less concrete than alternative underpinning methods, which in doing so, apply additional pressure on the already unreliable soil profile and leave the footing susceptible to further movement should ground conditions keep changing.
  • Can be easily customised in the number of load-bearing pins installed and varying ‘angle from vertical’ to suit on-site loading and geological variations, providing an efficient solution every time.  Deep Pinning has penetrated through firm clay, swampland and deep sandunes to name a few, many as deep as 22m.
  • The process of underpinning over an area produces a defined ‘bedrock depth profile’ which allows any premature refusal on ‘floaters’ or other unreliable strata to be identified as a clear deviation from the norm and structural compensations made.  In addition, the softness of the profile at various depths invariably pinpoints the location of the failure layer so that repairs can be made to leaking pipes or drainage issues.   This action thereby prevents the problem from spreading to other footings.  Logging of the depth where soft layers exist allows upstream cut-off drain depths to be specified so seepage can be intercepted in an attempt to protect the remainder of the property.  It provides a full soil profile health assessment.
  • Several clients in recent years have had their underpinning FULLY COVERED by their house insurance due to our unique ability to confidently identify the scope of the below-ground issues and the ultimate cause.  Deep Pinning not only fixes the problem – guaranteed – it can be virtually free…
  • Alternative underpinning systems are often more costly, less effective and include limitations, exclusions and legal disclaimers simply because they stop short of addressing the cause of the failure.  Why  compromise when a superior solution is available?
  • The Deep-pinning Advanced Underpinning System was conceived, developed and patented by a Specialist Geotechnical Engineer working in Hobart, Tasmania, Australia and carries a Unconditional Performance Guarantee on bedrock – an industry first.
By |2016-10-27T19:00:46+11:00February 25th, 2016|News|0 Comments

The Deep Pinning philosophy.

“Welcome to our website.  If you suspect your home needs some underpinning, please contact us for a no-obligation consultation.  There may be existing factors such as trees that are too close to a footing, ground subsidence due to nearby retaining wall failure etc. which can be dealt with simply and therefore underpinning is not required.  Never agree to underpinning until a full assessment has been carried out by an experienced geotechnical engineer – often salesmen do not understand the whole structural system by which structures and the ground profile interact.  Underpinning should be considered the last resort – not the knee-jerk response.  In some cases, underpinning can make the situation worse as a stable reference is created which exaggerates the ongoing movement in the rest of the dwelling.  If a contractor suggests that underpinning is necessary without asking you detailed questions about your property and it’s history, then their solution may be unjustified, ineffective and a waste of your hard-earned money.  Often when a problem appears in a previously stable home, there is a defined event, such as a leaking water supply or sewer/stormwater pipe, which has triggered the footing movement.  If fixed quickly, the foundation conditions should return to their previously stable state – no underpinning is normally required.

I offer a wholistic approach to footing repairs, putting myself in the ‘footings’ of the house and trying to determine what has caused the change in behaviour.  Most people are surprised to learn that most homes I assess do not require underpinning either because the original trigger which lead to the movement has been repaired in the past or that something as simple as blocked gutters, garden taps left dripping or rainfall run-off from a neighbours’ driveway is creating the foundation imbalance.  We always endeavour to treat the cause of the problem AND the symptoms.

Thank you for visiting the site.  I hope the information I have gleamed from over 20 years of specialised experience as a site-based Geotechnical Engineer helps you decide on the best possible solution.  Be assured that being bound by the Institution of Engineers Australia’s code of ethics, advice I provide is genuine, professional and the most cost effective in the long term.

I am very proud of the underpinning system I have developed over many years and believe it has revolutionised the field of underpinning for the better – I look forward to helping you if required in the future.”


Michael O’Halloran  BE (UTAS) PEng. HIA Member.

Owner, The Underpinning Engineers. Inventor of Deep Pinning.

By |2016-10-27T19:00:46+11:00February 25th, 2016|News|0 Comments