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- To: <seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org>
- Subject: Wood Piles
- From: "Michael L. Hemstad" <hemstad.ml(--nospam--at)tkda.com>
- Date: Tue, 30 Sep 2003 12:30:48 -0500
Jim Persing wrote: "I have been asked to provide some general information regarding existing wood piles used at a water front (fresh water) house regarding estimated life, inspection, verification, etc. Does anybody know of a good reference or source that I could use?" Jim, When I used to inspect bridges in Iowa, wood piling life was a pretty predictable thing. After about 15 years, they would develop a white ring aound their base. The wood would look checked and bleached out. 6 years after this, they were mush. Not 4, not 8; 6 years. This was borne out on dozens of bridges in northern and central Iowa. They were all inspected on a 2 year cycle, so we had pretty good information. I assume that other regions would have a similar scenario; the timing will be adjusted by average temperature (especially whether and for how long it freezes in the winter) and average humidity, etc. Check with a County Engineer in the area of your project; ask him about records on his older wood bridges. Mike Hemstad, P.E. TKDA St. Paul, Minnesota
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