Category Archives: Continuing Education Series

Q. What did the Policy Advisory address?

A. Residential foundation engineering. Many ASCE practitioners expressed the opinion that technical guidelines should more rightly be created by a technical society such as ASCE rather than by the TBPE. One goal of the guidelines has been to provide the TBPE with guidance in their evaluation of complaints brought against engineers practicing residential foundation engineering. The Guidelines help to assure foundations are evaluated against a common standard. In doing so, the same evaluation standard is applied to multiple foundation systems throughout Texas, including Austin. This provides the end user (customer) of the engineering opinion an objective measure of the structural status (strength and performance) of a particular foundation system. In other words, regardless of the size, geometry, or geographical location of the foundation system, the foundation evaluation findings can be relied upon because there is an “apples to apples” comparison between different foundations and the ASCE guidelines.

To date, a method for evaluating residential foundations that combines the various civil, geotechnical, and structural evaluation aspects of residential foundation systems into one concise document geared for Texas soils has not been authored. With its wide acceptance and ongoing use by most professionals, the “Guidelines for the Evaluation and Repair of Residential Foundations” version 2” thus becomes an accepted structural inspection standard in Texas.