How are Micropiles installed?

Micropiles are typically small diameter piles installed to transfer loads through less competent ground to more competent ground or rock below. They are generally used where difficult access, low overhead, or difficult drilling conditions preclude the use of other types of deep foundations.

Schnabel has the expertise to help you determine the solution you need.


Micropiles Installation

Micropiles are small diameter, typically 12 inches or less, deep foundation piles. Because they can be installed with relatively small drilling equipment, they are a cost-effective foundation system inside existing buildings, under existing bridges, and in other types of low overhead or restricted access conditions. An innovative micropiles construction company, Schnabel has specialized drills that can even travel through a standard doorway and drill under an 8-foot ceiling height.

Often used to underpin existing structures, micropiles can be installed inside the structure, and their installation produces less vibration than other deep foundation systems. Micropiles are also used to construct deep foundations where there are natural or man-made obstructions, since the drill systems developed for these smaller diameter holes are better able to penetrate cobbles, boulders and other obstructions compared to conventional drilled or driven pile systems. Allowable loads for micropiles are typically between 20 and 200 kips, but Schnabel has installed and tested micropiles with over 1,200 kips in allowable load in compression.

In the most difficult drilling conditions, such as within landslide debris, Schnabel has drilled micropiles and used them as soldier beams in permanent tieback wall construction. In difficult subsurface conditions and restricted access, micropiles can be a more cost-effective solution for new-structure construction. With decades of experience performing micropiles installation, Schnabel is able to provide the most cost effective micropile solution for your project.

Sub-surface to street level, safely and efficiently.

Interstate 40

Schnabel designed two tied-back micropile walls to stabilize a landslide that had been eroded by hurricane floodwaters below Interstate 40 in Haywood County, North Carolina.

American Trucking Association

Schnabel designed a micropile support system that enabled the construction of a new basement under an existing structure to support the renovation of the historical American Trucking Association building in Washington D.C.

NCDOT contracted Schnabel to design and build a repair that would keep this important interstate open and reestablish the eastbound lane. This successful project was completed during the coldest months of the year and within the timeframe established by the State of North Carolina.

Kevin Cargill, P.E., Interstate 40 Project


Schnabel is the sector’s most operationally efficient Geostuctural Design & Construction contractor. We optimize efficiencies by  leveraging decades of experience and design/build expertise, to innovate processes and approaches that are consistently
proven to deliver optimal outcomes for our clients.

Load More Posts