Case Studies: Ararat, VA- 20th Century Farm House Receives Stabilized Floor System

Wednesday, July 20th, 2016 By Jaimie Hooker


The 80-year-old farm house in Ararat, VA had a walk-in dirt floor cellar below the home. After years of prolonged exposure to moisture and termites, the floor system was beginning to show it’s age. Soft spots, creaking, and humps throughout the living area of the first floor were the signs of a much larger problem with the infrastructure of the home.

While the termite problem had been eradicated years ago, the homeowners attempted fixing the sagging floor system themselves by installing store bought steel posts. As the supports began to rust, adding to the problem instead of providing a solution, the homeowners decided to have the professionals stabilize their home.


System Design Specialist, Jason Chapman, arrived at the home to discover the farm house still had the original floor system that was built 80 years ago. Signs of previous termite damage were evident in certain areas. However, the largest concern was the weight of the floor system depending on the rusted support posts the homeowners had installed. Jason designed a permanent solution with the homeowners that would not only meet the needs of the home but the wants of the homeowners; a sleek looking support post that would not rust over time.

Unlike the previous support posts, the IntelliJack System is unique and specifically engineered for dirt floors. A solid base was created by excavating a deep hole in the soil and filling with compacted gravel to help with the weak foundation soil. The purpose of the footing hole was to transfer the weight of the floor system to existing soils.

As the base was prepared, (5) IntelliJacks were installed along the sagging girder of the home. Each IntelliJack was customized depending on the height needed for proper stabilization and lift. The components of the system work collectively, providing an efficient and permanent solution.

The worry of rusting over the years was no longer an issue for the homeowners, as the galvanized steel is completely corrosion resistant. Supporting loads more than 60,000 pounds the IntelliJack System easily stabilized and leveled the older floor system. All of the soft spots, humps, and creaks on the first floor are now gone, the homeowners are able to walk with ease in their own home!

Project Summary

Installing Contractor: Tar Heel Basement Systems

System Design Specialist: Jason Chapman

Products Installed: (5) IntelliJacks

About the author
Jaimie Hooker is the Assistant Marketing Director at Tar Heel Basement Systems; authoring case studies, technical papers, creating and captioning photo albums and managing website content. She also oversees the organization of video testimonials, shows and events, Jaimie lives in the small town of Madison, NC with her husband, Paul, and 3 year old son, Franklin.