Posted on 07/24/2008
Recently a homeowner in Northeastern PA was frustrated because each winter one corner of his house would heave due to a permafrost ice pack that was forming below his foundation. Due to the presence of excessive groundwater in his lawn, this was a recurring problem.
The key to the solution was provided via an Outdoor Heating Cable. While snow melting systems are typically designed for heated driveways and sidewalks or other outdoor applications, a cable with lower power was required for this project. First I recommended that the homeowner excavate at least two feet around the corner where the foundation was heaving. Then a heating cable was laid that would snake back and forth across the area. The mineral insulated heating cable assembly was 180 ft. long, generated 3,370 Watts and was installed to make 6 passes back and forth, 15 ft. in each direction from the corner of the house. (30 ft. per pass x 6 passes = 180 ft.)
Next 12" of dirt was added between each pass of heater cable, creating a build-up of heat that would slowly travel upward and melt the permafrost. The system included a SmartStat™ thermostat and sensor to control the heat. Thanks to the WarmlyYours heating cable, the permafrost has been eliminated. Consequently, the foundation is subjected to much less stress, an important consideration for any homeowner.
Other applications for outdoor heating cables include heated driveways, sidewalks and gutter deicing.
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