All about Driven Timber Piles

When it come to load-bearing piles, concrete and steel are all viable options, but for this article, we’re focusing our attention on Driven Timber Piles! Thank you to PileBuck magazine for providing the content.

Timber Piles have been utilised around the world for thousands of years. For almost 6,000 years, tribes in Switzerland used natural logs as pilings to support their homes that were build on the region’s shoreline. Archeologists have also uncovered a similar use of timber piling for bridges spanning the Tiber River dating back to 620 B.C.

Timber piles are a unique product in that they are made from a natural material and are subject to variations in species, size, straightness, and strength. Often forests are managed specifically for use in manufacturing piles. These forests are maintained for 35+ years to create timber piles.

Sustainability is built in by growing more trees than are harvested, and the enhanced durability of preservative-treated timber pilings allows forests more time to produce mature trees.

Here are the top reasons to use timber pilings on your next project:

  • Low cost, per tonne of capacity
  • Dependable, renewable supply – available in a range of lengths and sizes
  • Long history of successful application to low and medium unit loads
  • Easily handled and driven with conventional equipment
  • Tapered shape and full displacement characteristics advantageous for developing soil capacity in shorter lengths
  • Strength in tension and bending applications

A main consideration is if timber piles are installed above the water table, they are vulnerable to fungal decay. Below the groundwater level, dissolved oxygen is lacking even though there is ample water. Hence, timber tends to last for a long time below groundwater level.  Timber that is to be used above the water table can be protected from decay and insects by numerous forms of wood preservation using pressure treatment (alkaline copper quaternary (ACQ), chromated copper arsenate (CCA), creosote, etc.).

Installation Method:

The job of the pile is to distribute the weight of the structure evenly. They are placed into the ground using a pile driver rig. Holding the piles perfectly vertical, this machine hammers each structure into the ground and also acts as a crane.

Driven Timber Piles Driven Piling Illustration

A leading UK ground engineering specialist, focusing on multi-discipline excellence and value engineering. We design and deliver some of the UK’s largest ground engineering projects.

Our vision is to bring confidence to those constructing the landscape of tomorrow .

1947. Central Jutland, Denmark. Per Aarsleff borrowed 10,000 Danish Kroner from his father’s life insurance, bought an excavator, and founded Northern Europe’s leading contracting company.

Our biggest asset, our team is composed of the leading experts in ground engineering. Working with collaboration and cohesion at the core of our business, we can guarantee a quick and founded answer to all your questions.

We recruit and reward our people based on our ‘Step into the Blue’ company culture, where we embrace the core values of Life and Health, Trust, and Responsibility.

We do everything to ensure our team and yours work safely on our sites. With our core value of Life & Health, we see safety as a cultural pillar.

Our ISO accreditations are an assurance to you that we take governance seriously. Read our policies to discover more.

The projects that keep society running. Bridges, buildings, transit and rail facilities, embankment support, marine and offshore facilities, mines, airports, and water projects.

Keeping things turning. Sewage Treatment Works, Waste Water Treatment Works, Wind Farms and Wind Turbines, Biomass Plants, and Power stations.

Meeting society’s needs. Nursing and care homes, MOD buildings, Schools and Universities, and small or large-sized residential developments.

Staying on the move. Remediation, bridges, and foundation work are integral to keeping the industry running smoothly.

The landscape of the marketplace. Mega-retail sheds, distribution warehouses, University accommodation, and major supermarket and household name units.

Keeping things afloat. Ports and harbours, coastal defences, river embankments and inland waterways.

Technically trained estimators and a dedicated, in-house design team means we consider value-engineering at every stage of your project.

More than just a model, Visual Design & Construction is a tool to encourage collaboration and improve quality across all facets of a scheme.

From large commercial sheds to small residential plots, piling could be the foundation solution you need to support your project.

Issues around collapse, slipping or erosion? Our experts in retaining solutions have a broad portfolio of techniques designed to fix even the most nuanced of sites.

Tricky ground conditions or requirements? Aarsleff’s ground engineering team work on stabilisation through a varied range of techniques, bespoke to the properties of your site ground.

Our plant workshop offers a range of services designed to ensure your plant works for you. Whether it’s manufacturing and fabrication of equipment for long-term needs or hire so you can complete something specific.