Helical bar reinforcement can be put to use in a number of ways when repairing the structure of a property. A helical stainless steel reinforcing bar has a high tensile strength which compliments masonry which is good in compression. Structural Repairs Ltd is an approved Helifix installer and has many years of experience installing their products.
Main uses for helical bars
By grinding out the mortar bed joints between bricks / blocks and ‘gluing’ in a stainless steel spiral wire (Helibar) the masonry is ‘stitched’ back together. The bars are ‘glued’ in using either an epoxy / polyester resin or a non-shrink, thixotropic, cementitious grout. It may also be necessary to replace broken bricks or fill cracks in render with a concrete repair mortar. Crack stitching is commonly used in conjunction with other Helifix products or other forms of structural repair.
Remedial wall ties
The two skins of a cavity wall should be connected together using wall ties. We install several types of Helifix remedial wall tie into either old or new walls. A reason for needing remedial wall ties can be either the existing ones have corroded or, as is too often the case, not enough wall ties were inserted during construction.
Helifix products can be used to provide lateral restraint in the following situations:
- reconnect separated internal and external walls
- tying external walls back to an internal floor
- supporting bulging walls
- reinstating solid walls that have delaminated and are separating
When using helical bar to restrain a wall the repair is designed on the principle of distributing the load over many discrete fixings. By using several unobtrusive Helifix products it is often possible to achieve a less disruptive repair more quickly and cheaply than using traditional steel restraint straps or rebuild techniques.
If a wall is in a situation where it is supported from the underneath at each end but not in the middle (e.g. over a window opening or where the foundations are spanning across soft ground) then the wall is required to ‘bridge’ or beam over the gap. As first principles state, beams loaded from the top are in tension along the bottom edge and compression along the top edge. Masonry is poor in tension so when a traditionally constructed wall is found to be beaming the bricks in tension pull apart (and cracks appear). The installation of helical bar into bed joints increases the tensile strength of a wall and holds the masonry units together. We design and install Helibeams and all our designs are checked and warrantied by a Helifix engineer.
Why we recommend Helifix
Helifix are the inventors and market leaders of this modern system of masonry repair that utilises stainless steel wire twisted to form a helix. Not only do Helifix have the pedigree associated with inventing the product but they are also part of a multi-national construction materials group and provide arguably the best technical support of their peers in the country. Helifix products offer a non-disruptive solution for the structural stabilisation of solid walls, cavity walls, random stone walls, rubble filled walls, blockwork and calcium-silicate brickwork. Products by Helifix are used for masonry repair in locations ranging from garages and residential properties to blocks of flats and bridges.
All Helifix work comes with an 10 year Helifix warranty covering the design, materials and workmanship, is also covered by a professional indemnity insurance policy and is further protected by the Consumer Protection Association (CPA). All designs are checked by a Helifix engineer and all products are tested and quality assured. Helifix have a dedicated team of in-house engineers that check every one of our designs before it is installed.
Helifix products can be specified by your engineer, a Helifix representative, a loss adjuster, a surveyor or us. If you or your construction professional specifies a helical bar product by a different manufacturer (e.g. Thor Helical, Wallfast, Twistfix, Brickfix, Permagard, Ancon, Helix, Target Fixings, Helical Systems or Sure Twist) please contact us because we can achieve the same result using Helifix products but with some added benefits.
If, for some reason, it is an essential stipulation that your job is completed using an alternative product then Structural Repairs Ltd are able to install the helical bar of your choice, albeit without some of the additional benefits offered by Helifix. Please contact us and we can talk through your options.