Alchemy-Spetec Blog

Lift Sunken Slabs & Stabilize Loose Soil Caused by Uncontrolled Water

Posted by David Park on May 26, 2022 10:00:00 AM

Banner - Lift-Sunken-Slabs-&-Stabilize-Loose-Soil

Body - Lift-Sunken-Slabs-&-Stabilize-Loose-SoilMost property owners and managers don’t realize that the greatest threat to their slabs and structures hides underneath the surface of the ground. Water is relentless, and your property is at risk if it is left unchecked. Uncontrolled water can lead to soil erosion, voids, and sometimes even sinkholes. Neglecting these types of soil issues can end up costing significant money, time, and stress.

We believe that every property owner and manager should understand how to prevent these problems from getting out of control. Water must be controlled properly, and with the right solutions. Alchemy-Spetec offers a variety of polyurethane resins for lifting sunken slabs, stabilizing soil, and filling voids underneath foundations and slabs. We are a global manufacturing company certified to ISO9001. Our polyurethane resin technology has been successfully used on a multitude of projects spanning the globe. It's also environmentally friendly (NSF certified for contact with drinking water).

Raising & Lifting Concrete

Sunken concrete slabs can be lifted back into place with our two-component polymer foams designed to work in wet or dry conditions. The expansion force of the concrete leveling foam coupled with the pressure of a specialized pump generates enough controlled force to lift virtually any structure back into position with 1/8” precision. Polyjacking (a.k.a. slab lifting and concrete lifting) can be accomplished at a fraction of the cost and time required for replacement using our AP Lift series of resins. The Deep Lift® process may be necessary if deeper soil issues are undermining the slab or structure.

Polyurethane Slab Lifting Products

Stabilizing Soil

Unstable, eroded, or loose soil around infrastructure can result in settlement and damage to the structure. Voids can be filled, seawalls remediated, soil consolidated, and water migration halted by permeating the soil with our ultra-low viscosity resins

Polyurethane Soil Stabilization Products

3-Step Property Preservation Plan

Eliminate the risk of a total loss to your property and contact our team of experts now to start your Property Preservation Plan. With our support, you can save your property, save your money, and save your peace of mind.

  1. Start a conversation with one of our experts about your specific challenge/property.
  2. We will work with you to create an action plan custom-tailored to your needs.
  3. We will connect you to a factory-authorized contractor who will help you solve your problem.

Sign Up for a Consultation Now!

Topics: All Posts, Lift Slabs, Stabilize Soil, Fill Voids

CE/PDH Accredited Presentation on Polyurethane Geotech Applications

Posted by Andy Powell on Apr 28, 2022 10:00:00 AM

Banner - Accredited Geotech Presentation

Body - Accredited Geotech PresentationThe Geotechnical Applications for Polyurethane presentation explains and demonstrates how concrete leveling and soil stabilization resins can be used to stabilize soil and repair structures. The presentation covers the following topics:

  • Single Component Polyurethane Grout Applications
  • Two-Component Polyurethane Grout Applications
  • Acrylic Grout Applications

This one-hour CE/PDH accredited presentation is ideal for engineers who are interested in learning about next-generation geotech repair methods for pavement lifting and stabilization, excavation support, erosion control, infrastructure infiltration control, etc.

Click here and submit your info for a follow-up call on scheduling an accredited presentation.

Want more information on geotech products and equipment?

Download the Info-Packed Geotech Product Catalog!

Topics: All Posts, Lift Slabs, Stabilize Soil, Deep Lift, Fill Voids, Engineer Resources

Spring 2022 Geotech Training Report

Posted by Kreg Thornley on Apr 5, 2022 10:00:00 AM

Banner - Spring 2022 Geotech Training Report

Body - Spring 2022 Geotech Training ReportOn March 29th - 31st, Contractors from around the world traveled to Alchemy-Spetec HQ in Tucker, GA for a thorough education in Slab Lifting, Soil Stabilization, the Deep Lift® process, equipment, and applications. They received hands-on training from a technical staff with decades of on-the-job experience.

This three-day geotech bootcamp featured presentations and demos on the following subjects:

  • Geotech Product Line Overview
  • Geotech Applications & Case Studies
  • PolyBadger® Demo & Training
  • Estimating & Quoting Jobs
  • PMC Pump Demo & Training
  • Leak Seal Issues on Geotech Jobs
  • Ground Penetrating Radar Demo & Training
  • Slab Lift Rig Demo & Training
  • Competing Geotech Techniques
  • PolyShark® / Soil Stabilization Demo & Training (On-Site)
  • Deep Lift® Demo & Training (On-Site)

All of us here at Alchemy-Spetec would like to thank everyone who participated! and extend an invitation to those who missed this event to sign up below for notifications on future training programs.

Sign Up to Get Notified for Future Training Events

Topics: All Posts, Lift Slabs, Stabilize Soil, Business Tips, Deep Lift, Fill Voids

What Is Polyurethane?

Posted by Brian Dalinghaus on Mar 31, 2022 10:00:00 AM

Banner - What is Polyurethane

Body - What is PolyurethaneThis post is part of the Alchemy-Spetec Contractor Lens series, featuring views, news & case studies written by our customers. This article, written by Brian Dalinghaus of Dalinghaus Construction, provides an overview of polyurethane concrete repair material. If you're an Alchemy-Spetec customer and you'd like to discuss writing content for our blog, please send an email to marketing@alchemy-spetec.com today!

Perhaps a foundation repair contractor has suggested polyurethane foam for deep injection, void fill, or slab lifting/leveling, but you’re not so sure about pumping “plastic” into the earth or underneath your home. You’re probably wondering: is polyurethane environmentally friendly? Is it effective?

If you’re concerned about the use of polyurethane for foundation repair and soil densification or just want to know more general information about PU, this article is for you.

Dalinghaus Construction Inc. has been in the foundation repair game since 2015. We have over 100 years of combined foundation repair experience and have serviced thousands of foundations in Southern California and Arizona via polyurethane-related repairs. We know everything there is to know about polyurethane and we’re here to share.

In this article, you will learn the definition of polyurethane, its history, many general uses, and how polyurethane foam is utilized in foundation repair.

What is Polyurethane?

Before you pump gallons of polyurethane foam underneath your home or into the soil around your property, you probably want to know what exactly it is.

Polyurethane Definition

Polyurethane is a synthetic resin compound comprised of carbamate/urethane groups linked to polymer units, often abbreviated as PU or PUR. In other words, polyurethane is a combination of chemicals/compounds that react to create a plastic-like substance. As a solid, polyurethane has an open-cellular structure – which is a foam.

Polyurethane foam, utilized for many purposes including insulation, sound-proofing, and foundation repair, is created by the chemical reaction of Diisocyanates and polyols (both of which are derived from organic crude oil). Because polyurethane is comprised of organic material, it is environmentally friendly and does not contribute to an increased eco-footprint.

Polyurethane is not a plastic. Technically, the elongated flexible polymer molecules that make up thermoset polyurethanes categorize this material as an elastomer (a natural or synthetic polymer having elastic properties, e.g., rubber).

Polyurethane foam is a safe, eco-friendly option to densify weak, non-load-bearing soil, void fill beneath your foundation following a lift/stabilization and relevel slabs.

History of Polyurethane

Polyurethane was invented in 1937 by the renowned German Professor Dr. Otto Bayer. Dr. Otto Bayer was an industrial chemist and worked for IG Farben – spearheading the research team that discovered polyaddition (the key to synthesis for polyurethanes by combining polyol and polyisocyanate).

Polyurethane first enjoyed widespread use in World War II as a rubber substitute. Polyurethane was utilized as airplane finishes, various coatings, and to create flame-retardant clothing. By the 1950s, Polyurethane was utilized for many different applications: couch cushion foam, rigid foams, elastomers, and adhesives.

Today, polyurethane is utilized for a wide variety of applications: mattresses, shoe soles, car seats, insulation, and even pacemakers. Polyurethane is a “behind the scenes” product, often hidden behind a layer of fabric, plastic, or other encasing material.

Due to its prevalence, in everything from car seats to pacemakers, it’s truly difficult to grasp the full scope and impact of polyurethane in everyday life – however, its importance in the foundation repair game is easy to explain.

Polyurethane and Foundation Repair

The foundation repair industry uses polyurethane foam primarily for soil densification, void fill, and lifting/leveling slabs back into place. Polyurethane foam is an injectable polyol and isocyanate resin sealant, insulation, grout which expands upon application providing void fill, structural support, and re-leveling properties.

The polyurethane foam is installed via an application gun: the polyols (a type of alcohol, containing multiple hydroxyl groups) and diisocyanate/polymeric isocyanate are pumped separately, but simultaneously. The chemicals combine and react after exiting the application gun.

The foam then expands, filling the void, densifying the soil, or lifting the slab back into place. In short, polyurethane has incredible expansive properties, allowing it to fill voids evenly and with ease – providing strength and support to the affected structure.

Here at Dalinghaus Construction Inc., we use Alchemy-Spetec's AP Lift 430 (which has been certified by Truesdail Labs to NSF/ANSI 61-5 – meaning it’s approved for contact with drinking water).

AP Lift 430 is:

  • Waterproof (Hydrophobic)
  • Noninvasive (Install Process is More Efficient and Replacing Concrete)
  • Nonpolluting (NSF Approved for Contact with Potable Water)

In addition, AP Lift 430 weighs approximately 3 pounds per cubic foot and reaches 90% compression strength in only 15 minutes. And, finally, polyurethane can hold 7,200 pounds per square foot. In short, polyurethane is a fantastic solution for foundation repair and hillside stabilization needs.

Polyurethane Foam is Safe, Effective, and Environmentally Friendly

In this article, you learned the definition of polyurethane, how it was invited by Dr. Otto Bayer, the wide spectrum of uses, and how polyurethane foam is utilized in foundation repair and construction. You also learned that polyurethane is a safe and effective product. Dalinghaus Construction has helped hundreds of homeowners and offers an array of services, including carbon fiber crack repair, steel pier underpinning, and more. 

Click here if you live in Southern California or Arizona and would like to book a free foundation inspection.

Want more information on polyurethane repair products?

Download the Info-Packed Geotech Product Catalog!

Download the Info-Packed Leak Seal Product Catalog!

Topics: All Posts, Lift Slabs, Stabilize Soil, Fill Voids

Why You Should Sign Up to Be Notified of Future Training Events

Posted by Kreg Thornley on Mar 22, 2022 10:00:00 AM

Banner - Why You Should Sign Up to Be Notified of Future Training Events

Body - Why You Should Sign Up to Be Notified of Future Training EventsAlchemy-Spetec's Spring 2022 training event is officially SOLD OUT!  If you're still interested in training, we'll be conducting another event in the Fall of 2022.  Click the button below and fill out the form.  We'll keep you updated on the next event and all other training opportunities!

Don't miss this opportunity for a thorough education in Slab Lifting, Soil Stabilization, the Alchemy-Spetec Deep Lift® process, equipment, and applications. You’ll get hands-on training from a technical staff with decades of on-the-job experience.

Alchemy-Spetec two-day geotech training events typically consist of the following...

  • Geotech Product Line Overview
  • Geotech Applications & Case Studies
  • PolyBadger® Demo & Training
  • Estimating & Quoting Jobs
  • PMC Pump Demo & Training
  • Leak Seal Issues on Geotech Jobs
  • Ground Penetrating Radar Demo & Training
  • Slab Lift Rig Demo & Training
  • Competing Geotech Techniques
  • PolyShark® / Soil Stabilization Demo & Training (On-Site)
  • Deep Lift® Demo & Training (On-Site)

Want to be alerted when Fall 2022 training registration is available?

Sign Up to Get Notified for Future Training Events

Topics: Equipment & Accessories, All Posts, Lift Slabs, Stabilize Soil, Business Tips, Deep Lift, Fill Voids

Filling Voids with Polyurethane Foam

Posted by Kreg Thornley on Mar 15, 2022 10:00:00 AM

Banner - Filling Voids with Polyurethane Foam

Body - Filling Voids with Polyurethane FoamFilling voids is one of the most common applications for polyurethane concrete repair foam. Geotech contractors use specialized foam to fill voids in the soil under slabs, behind retaining walls, and around municipal infrastructure. In this post, we'll review some of the most popular Alchemy-Spetec blog articles on the subject.

Filling Voids Under Concrete Slabs

In his blog post Filling Dangerous Voids Under Slabs, Alchemy-Spetec's Geotech Division Manager Andy Powell covers the following key points:

  • The dangers of soil voids under slabs.
  • Signs of a possible void under a slab.
  • How polyurethane is used to repair voids.

Click here to read more...

Filling Voids Surrounding a Structure

In his blog post Filling Voids with One-Component Polyurethane, Alchemy-Spetec's Geotech Director of Technical Services Colt Hullander discusses the materials used for this specific application...

Alchemy-Spetec's AP Fill 700 and AP Fill 720 are one-component polyurethanes used for filling voids in supporting soil surrounding a structure. Situations in which these materials might be used for void fill include soil adjacent to retaining walls, basement walls, seawalls, and infrastructure boxes.

Click here to read more...

Filling Voids in a Municipal Leak Seal Context

In his blog post, Sealing Leaks & Voids in Concrete Infrastructure, Alchemy-Spetec's Leak Seal Director of Technical Services Charlie Lerman outlines the causes of and remedies for leaks and voids in concrete infrastructure...

Causes of Leaks and Voids:

  • Imperfect construction.
  • Weather and wear.
  • Unstable soil.

How Injection Grout Helps:

  • Water activation.
  • Pressure injection.
  • Flexible, watertight seal.

Click here to read more...

Want more information on Alchemy-Spetec products?

Download the Info-Packed Geotech Product Catalog!

Download the Info-Packed Leak Seal Product Catalog!

Topics: All Posts, Fill Voids

Alchemy-Spetec Spring 2022 Training SOLD OUT!

Posted by Stephen C. Barton on Feb 24, 2022 10:00:00 AM

Banner - Alchemy-Spetec Spring 2022 Training Sold Out

Body - Alchemy-Spetec Spring 2022 Training Sold Out

Alchemy-Spetec's Spring 2022 training event is officially SOLD OUT!  If you're still interested in training, we'll be conducting another event in the Fall of 2022.  Click the button below and fill out the form.  We'll keep you updated on the next event and all other training opportunities!

Sign Up to Get Notified for Future Training Events

Alchemy-Spetec two-day geotech training events typically consist of the following...

  • Geotech Product Line Overview
  • Geotech Applications & Case Studies
  • PolyBadger® Demo & Training
  • Estimating & Quoting Jobs
  • PMC Pump Demo & Training
  • Leak Seal Issues on Geotech Jobs
  • Ground Penetrating Radar Demo & Training
  • Slab Lift Rig Demo & Training
  • Competing Geotech Techniques
  • PolyShark® / Soil Stabilization Demo & Training (On-Site)
  • Deep Lift® Demo & Training (On-Site)

Want to be alerted when Fall 2022 training registration is available?

Sign Up to Get Notified for Future Training Events

Topics: Equipment & Accessories, All Posts, Lift Slabs, Stabilize Soil, Business Tips, Deep Lift, Fill Voids

Void Fill to Save Retaining Wall at Luxury Residence

Posted by Stephen C. Barton on Feb 10, 2022 10:00:00 AM

Banner - Void Fill to Save Retaining Wall at Luxury Residence

Body - Void Fill to Save Retaining Wall at Luxury ResidenceA retaining wall at a Georgia-based luxury residence was failing due to the pressure of the surrounding soil. A general contractor excavated the site around the wall and planned to install lightweight foam blocks as a replacement for the heavy soil that was removed. After doing a little more research, the contractor discovered that, due to the cost of shipping the blocks, liquid polyurethane foam installation by a local specialized contractor was a lot less expensive. Liquid polyurethane foam takes the shape of the void before curing to form a high-strength solid mass.

Powerful Polymer

The contactor used AP Fill 420 to fill the void. AP Fill 420 is a two-component, high expansion, hydro-insensitive polyurethane foam. It’s the top slab solution for polyurethane void fill. AP Fill 420 weighs 1.8 to 2.2 pounds per cubic foot.

Painless Procedure

The contractor filled the entire void with AP Fill 420 foam. This material was faster to install, less expensive, and provided a more waterproof solution than the foam blocks.

Rapid Result

The entire void was filled with lightweight and extremely durable polyurethane foam. This material placed minimal pressure on the retaining wall, eliminating the danger of future damage. The property owner was extremely pleased with the results.

Want more information on geotech products?

Download the Info-Packed Geotech Product Catalog!

Topics: All Posts, Fill Voids

Reminder - Geotech Training: March 29th - 31st, 2022

Posted by Kreg Thornley on Feb 8, 2022 10:00:00 AM

Banner - Geotech Training March 2022-1

Alchemy-Spetec HQ in Tucker, GA
Registration Deadline: Tuesday, March 1st

Click Here to Register NOW!

AS-Training-Program---Fall-2021$695 Registration Fee
$615 for each additional participant from
the same company.

Get ready for a thorough education in Slab Lifting, Soil Stabilization, the Alchemy-Spetec Deep Lift® process, equipment, and applications. You’ll get hands-on training from a technical staff with decades of on-the-job experience.

Tuesday, March 29th

  • Geotech Product Line Overview
  • Geotech Applications & Case Studies
  • PolyBadger® Demo & Training
  • Estimating & Quoting Jobs

Wednesday, March 30th

  • PMC Pump Demo & Training
  • Leak Seal Issues on Geotech Jobs
  • Ground Penetrating Radar Demo & Training
  • Slab Lift Rig Demo & Training
  • Competing Geotech Techniques

Thursday, March 31st

  • PolyShark® / Soil Stabilization Demo & Training (On-Site)
  • Deep Lift® Demo & Training (On-Site)

Your Instructors:

Andy Powell (Southeastern Regional Manager), Erik Prinzing (Midwest Regional Manager), Colt Hullander (Director of Technical Services - Geotech), Patrick Zito (Eastern Regional Manager), Joel Bryant (Western Regional Manager).

Click Here to Register NOW!

Topics: Equipment & Accessories, All Posts, Lift Slabs, Stabilize Soil, Business Tips, Deep Lift, Fill Voids

Applications of Polyurethane: Void Fill, Slab Leveling, and Slab Lifting

Posted by Brian Dalinghaus on Jan 25, 2022 10:00:00 AM

Banner - Applications of Polyurethane

Body - Applications of PolyurethaneThis post is part of the Alchemy-Spetec Contractor Lens series, featuring views, news & case studies written by our customers. This article, written by Brian Dalinghaus of Dalinghaus Construction, examines the following applications of polyurethane: void fill, slab leveling, and slab lifting. If you're an Alchemy-Spetec customer and you'd like to discuss writing content for our blog, please send an email to marketing@alchemy-spetec.com today!

So, your sidewalk sunk into the muddy mire that used to be your backyard before Fifi dug it up. Or perhaps your cement patio has a new severe slant to it so that you shimmy folded-up pieces of paper underneath your picnic table to make it artificially level. Or maybe you have weak, non-loadbearing soil and your pool is starting to crack due to the strain. The question is: how do you lift and re-level large sections of concrete?

Polyurethane is a panacea, a cure-all, for a long list of soil-related issues. Polyurethane can lift, level, and densify weak soil. Dalinghaus Construction Inc. has been in the foundation repair industry for decades. We are here to educate you on everything to do with polyurethane, whether you choose to employ our services or go with another contractor.

In this article, you will learn the properties of polyurethane foam, how it is utilized for soil densification, slab lift & leveling, and void fill.

What is Polyurethane Foam?

Polyurethane foam is an injectable polyol and isocyanate resin sealant, insulation, grout which expands upon application providing void fill, structural support, and re-leveling properties. Polyurethane foam is waterproof, flame-retardant, noninvasive, and nonpolluting, weighing 3.5 to 5 pounds per cubic foot and reaching 90% compression strength after 15 minutes. Polyurethane can hold up to 7,200 pounds per square foot.

Polyurethane is injected as a liquid before it solidifies into its foam state. Due to the initial liquid form, polyurethane permeates into tight spaces, allowing it to penetrate weak soil and difficult to reach voids. This foam is environmentally inert, posing no danger to the environment or the evolutionarily finely tuned habitat that is your yard.

In other words, your children and your furry pets are safe. In fact, polyurethane itself is so safe it is used in pacemakers and other devices that can be safely implanted into the body.

At Dalinghaus Construction Inc., we utilize AP Lift 430, which is certified by Truesdail Labs to NSF / ANSI 61-5 (meaning it’s approved for contact with drinking water).

Fun Fact with Brian – Polyurethane has quickly usurped mudjacking due to its lighter weight and less invasive application system. Mudjacking slurry weighs up to 140 pounds per cubic foot (which just adds more weight to an already sinking slab). To find out why Polyurethane is a better option than mudjacking, read our article Polyurethane Injection vs Mudjacking (Weight, Application, & Cure Time).

Polyurethane Soil Densification

Polyurethane foam densifies weak, non-loadbearing, expansive soils, such as clays and lay stratum. The polyurethane is pumped deep into the soil (often at varying levels/intervals) and expands as a foam. The polyurethane foam fills gaps and underground pockets that compromise the structural integrity of the soil. This foam solidifies, strengthening the soil by adding light, water retardant support. Polyurethane soil densification can be used to mitigate landslides, for hillside stabilization, and deep injection.

Polyurethane Slab Lift & Leveling

Sidewalks, concrete patios, and backyard basketball courts can sink and become uneven. While it’s tempting to blame the slanted slab for your bad dribbling skills during a pick-up game, it’s always more fun and safer to walk across flat, level surfaces.

A flat working space is especially important in a warehouse environment. Polyurethane foam works beautifully at leveling warehouse slabs to ensure all the warehouse workers are safe. To learn more about warehouse safety, read our other Contractor Lens article on the Alchemy-Spetec blog, Warehouse Floor Repair.

Polyurethane is the perfect candidate to lift and re-level concrete surfaces, due to the expansive properties of the foam. As the foam expands, it pushes upwards, exerting a tremendous amount of force on the slab above, returning it to level.

Polyurethane Void Fill

Polyurethane foam is often utilized as a void fill after a slab lift during an underpinning project. When the affected section of the home is lifted, it leaves a void where the home had settled. Polyurethane is injected, the foam expands, and the void is filled with strong, durable, and supportive material.

*Note – The lifted section of the home always requires void fill (the last pier on each side is referred to as the void fill lifting point). The entire area beneath the slab doesn’t require void fill, only the affected area.

Polyurethane Projects

In this article, you learned about various applications of polyurethane foam in the construction world: soil densification, slab lift & leveling, and void fill.

If you want to learn how invasive polyurethane injection is, read our article 5 Steps to Polyurethane Foam Injection (From Drillholes to Cure).

We have over 100 years of combined experience in the foundation repair game. We are here to educate and assist, whether you ultimately choose us for your polyurethane services or not.

If you live in Southern California or Arizona and would like to book a free foundation inspection, click the link below...Dalinghaus Schedule Evaluation

Want more information on slab lifting with polyurethane?

Download an Info-Packed Slab Lift Brochure!

Topics: All Posts, Lift Slabs, Fill Voids