Understanding Helical Piers: A Comprehensive Guide

Helical piers, also known as helical piles or screw piles, are a foundation solution that has gained popularity due to their efficiency and versatility. These piers are essential for foundation stabilization and support, particularly in regions with challenging soil conditions like Colorado. Rocky Mountain Steel Piering, Inc., a family-owned and operated business established in 1996, has led the distribution and installation of helix pier systems. Their expertise and dedication have made them a trusted name in the industry.

What Are Helical Piers?

Helical piers are steel shafts with helical plates, also known as helices or flights, welded to them. These plates allow the piers to be screwed into the ground like a giant screw. The piers are installed using hydraulic machinery, which rotates them into the soil to the desired depth and torque. The helical plates anchor the piers firmly in stable soil or bedrock, providing a strong and reliable foundation support system.

How Helical Piers Work

Helical piers function by transferring a structure’s load from unstable soil near the surface to more stable soil or bedrock deeper underground. The helical plates create a large surface area, distributing the load evenly and providing greater stability. This method is particularly effective in areas with fluctuating water tables, expansive clay soils, or other challenging ground conditions often found in Colorado.

Greg Keefer, President of Rocky Mountain Steel Piering, Inc., explains, “Helical piers are an ideal solution for Colorado’s diverse and often problematic soil conditions. Their ability to reach stable ground deep below the surface makes them a reliable and economical choice for new constructions and foundation repairs.”

Applications of Helical Piers

Helical piers are versatile and can be used in a variety of applications, including:

New Foundation Support

Helical piers provide a stable and robust foundation for new constructions. They are especially useful in areas with poor soil conditions where traditional concrete footings might fail. By installing helical piers before construction begins, builders can ensure a solid foundation that will stand the test of time.

Foundation Stabilization

Helical piers can stabilize foundations that have settled or shifted in existing structures. This is a common issue in Colorado due to the region’s expansive clay soils, which can swell and shrink with moisture changes. Helical piers can lift and stabilize these foundations, preventing further damage and restoring structural integrity.

Remodels and Additions

When adding to or remodeling an existing structure, it’s crucial to ensure the new foundation is as stable as the original. Helical piers can support these projects, ensuring that the entire structure remains secure and stable.

Benefits of Helical Piers

Helical piers offer several advantages over traditional foundation methods, including:

Quick Installation

Helical piers can be installed quickly and with minimal disruption to the surrounding area. This makes them an excellent choice for projects with tight timelines or where minimizing site disturbance is essential.


Helical piers can be used in various soil conditions and for various structures, from residential homes to commercial buildings and infrastructure projects.

Minimal Excavation

Unlike traditional foundation methods that require extensive excavation, helical piers can be installed with minimal digging. This reduces the environmental impact and lowers the overall project cost.

Long-Term Stability

Because helical piers reach stable soil or bedrock, they stabilize the structure. This is particularly important in regions like Colorado, where soil conditions can be unpredictable and challenging.

Rocky Mountain Steel Piering, Inc.: A Trusted Partner

Rocky Mountain Steel Piering, Inc. has built a reputation for excellence in the foundation support industry. Their team of experts is dedicated to providing reliable and economical solutions for their clients, whether a new foundation support, a remodel, or a repair project. “Our business is rooted in the high level of trust and confidence that our customers and design professionals have in us,” says Greg Keefer. “We pride ourselves on offering superior performance in the distribution and installation of helix pier systems.”


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