What are the differences between Bored Piles and Driven Piles?

What are the differences between Bored Piles and Driven Piles?

The fundamental difference between a driven pile foundation and bored pile foundation lies in their point of manufacture. A driven pile is formed off-site under factory-controlled conditions and a bored pile is manufactured on site and in place. 

Bored pile foundations, also known as replacement piles, are typically poured in place and provide support for structures, transferring their load to layers of soil or rock that have sufficient bearing capacity and suitable settlement characteristics. Driven piles are sometimes referred to as displacement piles because in the process of driving the pile into the ground, soil is moved radially as the pile shaft enters the ground. There may also be a component of movement of the soil in the vertical direction. 


Driven Piles are made from preformed material having a predetermined shape and size that can be physically inspected prior to and during installation, which is installed by impact hammering, vibrating or pushing into the earth. These may include timber, steel, or precast concrete piles.  

Bored Piles are cast-in-place concrete piles, meaning the pile is cast on the construction site. These may include Drilled Shafts, Mini Piles, Micro Piles, Drilled Displacement, Sectional Flight Auger (SFA) and Continuous Flight Auger (CFA) piles.  


Driven Pile Construction Equipment typically includes a crane, hammer, piling rig, powerpack (hydraulic or air-hammer and Bored Piles typically utilise a Drill Rig, Helper Crane, Spoil Handling (loader, skip pan, etc.), casing, slurry handling, cage erection template, concrete truck and concrete pump truck.  

Bored Pile Advantages 

The main advantages of bored piles include: 

  • Piles of variable lengths can be extended through soft, compressible, or swelling soils into suitable bearing material.
  • Piles can be extended to depths below frost penetration and seasonal moisture variation.
  • Large excavations and subsequent backfill are minimized.
  • Less disruption to adjacent soil occurs.
  • Vibration is relatively low, reducing disturbance of adjacent piles or structures.
  • For many design situations, bored piles offer higher capacities with potentially better economics than driven piles.

Driven Pile Advantages  

The main advantages of driven piles include: 

  • Piles can be precast to the required specifications.
  • Piles of any size, length and shape can be made in advance and used at the site. As a result, the progress of the work will be rapid. 
  • A pile driven into granular soil compacts the adjacent soil mass and as a result the bearing capacity of the pile is increased. 
  • The work is neat and clean. The supervision of work at the site can be reduced to a minimum. The storage space required is very much less. 
  • Driven piles may conveniently be used in places where it is advisable not to drill holes for fear of meeting ground water under pressure. 
  • Driven pile are the most favoured for works over water such as piles in wharf structures or jetties. 
Bored Piles Illustration

Bored Piles Illustration

Driven Precast Pile Illustration

Driven Precast Pile Illustration

If you’re looking for a piling contractor to install either precast or bored piles, please get in touch by calling 01636 611140 or drop us an email. 

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.