Ground beams are beams that are supported on piles, pads foundations or foundation walling to transfer loads from the main structure to the foundations.
They are commonly used in:
– Areas that have soils with low bearing strength eg. Black cotton soils
– Areas they can provide permanent shuttering, support, for traditional cast in situ slabs or modern suspended slabs
– Areas that require a lot of fill/ material to create a level ground. They provide a plane that is easy to work on.
These are common alternatives for foundations in areas that have black cotton soils which are especially common in Kenya. In this scenario, pad foundations are done and columns raised from stable ground. The ground beams are then made to span the given columns. On these ground beams will lay the ground floor slab.
They are very commonly paired with the beam and block floor slab system that uses the ground beams as their primary beam layout.
Ground beams can be done in situ or can be prefabricated to save time. However, it is common for them to be cast in situ in small home constructions. Their benefit is especially felt when one evaluates the cost of replacing(backfill) or stabilising unsuitable ground to provide an optimum surface for home construction in comparison to the ground beams.
Their sizing is dependent on the structural details provided by the local engineers in accordance with the local code. Should you need to buy the beams and block for foundations, one of the providers is Floor Decor Kenya who can be contacted by phone at 0780 955 000/ 0722679830, or through mail at email@example.com
Ever wondered how to pour a slab on grade foundation?
I hope this read has been useful. Build Wisely!