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What Kind Of Foundation

 
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Location: 1 Hour Northeast Of Dallas
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I recently came across information about straw bale houses and I've become very excited about the idea. But I'm curious what kind of foundation might be suitable for such a build in my area. We have expansive clay here in the Dallas area and so foundation issues are always a concern. Most houses here are concrete slabs which do not seem to fare well here but they're cheap. Being that I plan to build small, I'd like to do the foundation right. What type of foundation would be good for a straw bale house in areas with clay soil?
 
pollinator
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I am a huge fan of pier foundations for straw bale, with a large crawlspace/coldcellar or even stilts with a whole bottom floor screen room.
 
Brandon Greer
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Does this method take piers all the way down to bedrock? I think in our area bedrock is very deep, I could be wrong though.
 
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A well dug french drain/ rubble trench should be able to keep moisture out of your site well enough to not have to worry of the expansion and contraction of rich clay soil... plus all the soil dug out of your trench can go right back onto/into the house!
 
R Scott
pollinator
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Brandon Griffin wrote:Does this method take piers all the way down to bedrock? I think in our area bedrock is very deep, I could be wrong though.



It does to support a high-rise, but not for a straw bale house. Deep enough to not be affected by expansive or frost issues.

Rubble trench is good, too, if you are placing your house in an area you can control the drainage.
 
Brandon Greer
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The rubble trench looks kinda cool. Is this a good foundation type for clay?
 
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I'm in NE OK and we have clay soil too so I'll be interested in what you do. I'm more than likely going to do a rubble trench with a stem wall and french drain as shown in" building with awareness" video. He's in NM and I'm sure they are clay with all the adobe. I highly reccomend his 2+ hour video, very good quality and just search youtube or google
 
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R Scott wrote:I am a huge fan of pier foundations for straw bale, with a large crawlspace/coldcellar or even stilts with a whole bottom floor screen room.



R. Scott, would such a structure be feasible and sustainable in an area like Missoula, Mt? Right now I am trying to figure out the logistics of building one there, nd if they will allow me to build small.

Also, if anyone in that area, Missoula, or near the Ozarks has info about the logistics in your area on strawbale building, please PM me. Additionally, if a person in that area has land that they would allow a person, me, to build on then please PM me. Introverted me is easy to get along with.

Thanks,

Mindy
 
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