A Firm Foundation

Ever wondered about those piles of foam blocks stockpiled on a building site? They’re called waffle pods, and they are a key element of one of the most commonly used house foundation types in Australia.

The waffle pods are laid out in a grid pattern, with a space left between each pod. Steel reinforcing is placed in these spaces. Reinforcing is also placed around the edges and across the top of the whole assembly.

When concrete is poured onto the waffle pod assembly, the spaces between each pod become super-strong reinforced ribs. These ribs give a waffle pod slab stiffness and consistency that ensures a solid basis for a new home.

It’s this arrangement of ribs and pods that give the system its name – if you were to look at one of these slabs from underneath, it would look like a waffle!

The thickness of a waffle pod slab, and the size of the ribs and edge beam around the outside of the slab can be varied according to engineering requirements. Heavy concrete piers may also be poured at specific locations under the slab if additional support is needed due to local site conditions.

Advantages of the Waffle Pod System

So what are the advantages of using waffle pods? The waffle pod system allows more accurate specification of concrete quantities, reduces waste and boosts building site efficiency. Compared to other method of forming a slab, waffle pods create a more consistent, predictable foundation for your home.

The system can also have less impact on the environment – there is less soil disturbance, and no excavated rubble from trenches that needs to be transported off site.

Waffle pods also provide substantial insulation under a slab. This can improve the thermal comfort of a new home.

Waffle Pod Maintenance

As with any foundation system, slabs built using the waffle pod system need to be properly maintained. Wet/dry cycles in the soil under a slab should be avoided, so drainage is particularly important. The CSIRO has produced a helpful guide on foundation maintenance (see https://www.publish.csiro.au/book/7076/). The CSIRO does charge a modest fee for the guide, but Balance provides a free copy to every one of our clients.

The Wrap Up

We don’t want to waffle on (see what we did there), so let’s wrap this up. The advantages of the waffle pod system are too significant to ignore. The system is a fantastic innovation in modern construction, saving homeowners time and money.

To start planning your new home, click here to contact Balance Design and Construction or call 1300 056 298!

House Foundation Types - Waffle Pods

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