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Why specify screw piles for your project?

Despite CHANCE® screw pile technology being around for over 100 years.  Screw piles are still not being specified significantly across Commercial and Residential projects, despite the benefits it potentially brings to the project. 

However, with the increased demand for carbon reduced construction solutions, the specification of screw piles appear to be on the increase due to its potentially low carbon footprint. 

Contaminated Soils and Obstructions (including tree roots)

With the National Planning Policy Framwork (NPPF) guidelines for local planning authorities to make as much use as possible of previously developed or ‘brownfield’ land, working in and around contaminated soils is very abundant.  With contaminated soils comes the potential of a health risk to your workers, a high cost for remediation / removal, a longer programme for removal, increased sequential working costs. 

Why not consider removing excessive contaminated soil and reducing the risk of working around obstructions by specifying screw piles which in turn:

  • Do not produce any pile spoil or subsequently concrete overbreak and or concrete waste (usually around 25% for CFA piles).

  • Remove the need for an engineered designed piling platform.  Screw Piles are installed by excavators and apply load in the same way.

  • Screw piles can be removed and re-used reducing any potential standing time and with less plant, labour and materials on site (even before consideration of any attendance requirements), significantly reduce the cost.

Programme Benefits

Once gaining possession of site, piling works could commence within days or even hours rather than wait for weeks or months. 

Enabling works can be removed or considerably reduced, as equipment can be installed in the smallest of spaces, with piles being installed by mini excavators which can fit through gaps of less than 800mm and operate in headrooms of approximately 2m (note it is our preference not to install screw piles utilising hand held equipment removing what we feel is unnecessary risk) when zero swing mini excavators which can fit through gaps of less than 800mm and operate in headrooms of less than that of a standard floor height of 2.4m.

Works are not affected by the weather and are not reliant on Concrete batching plants

Piles can be confirmed as suitable for use and follow on works commence immediately once piles are installed. There is no delay for curing or testing.


Health, Safety and Environmental Benefits

When specifying the type of products to be installed, people should consider the benefits to health for workers, reducing or eliminating the safety and environmental risk.  Key factors for specifying screw piles are:

  • A significant number of construction tasks are reduced, eliminating risks

  • Works do not exceed alert levels for dust, noise and vibration and it is very minimum.

  • Tall piling equipment is avoided reducing risks when piling close to buildings and site boundaries.

  • The number of deliveries as well as the size of delivery vehicles are significantly less, reducing the risk of an accident.

  • High risk lifting operations are not required.

  • Deep excavations can be avoided

  • Washout facilities for concrete are not required, reducing the risk of contamination of soils.

  • Cutting of piles is carried out by a handheld battery operated (no sparks) bansaw and pile heads are fixed using handheld mechanical power tools reducing hand arm vibration and the production of noise, dust and waste.

  • Exclusion zones can be reduced to the swing zone of the excavator installing the piles.

  • Temporary works can be removed and re-used.

  • CHANCE® products are made from a minimum of 98% recycled materials

For any person wishing to consider screw piles on one of their forthcoming projects, please feel free to contact us via email on, phone Andrew directly on 07845 274656 or alternatively review the CHANCE® technical design manual.

Please note that it is our recommendation a screw pile is designed to site specific geotechnical data and installation confirmed with the torque values and piles are not just installed to a torque correlation (rather than go into the full detail, we have provided the below links at the bottom of this article for further reading.

CHANCE® screw pile technology
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