Is it good to build on helical piles and what heating system is best?


What experience do you have with techno piles?

Rob DesBaillets Aug. 26, 2021Last updated: Aug. 27, 2021

They seem to have many ecological strong points - once one has decided not to go the basement route. What in floor heating system -  if any - would you recommend. We are looking to build a 24' x 20', two storey cottage in the Bas St- Laurent.  thanks,


Responses (3)

Rotopile Lda.
Rotopile Lda. April 16, 2022, 11:14 a.m.

We at Paalupiste (and Rotopile) have used the helical piles as a source of heating and cooling by embedding geothermal collectors inside the piles. The benefit is that it saves the drilling costs of a geothermal well, which is especially expensive in the areas where there is a thick layer of clay before solid rock. When using the piles for heating/cooling, long piles can actually save customers´ costs by being a source of free heating and cooling, instead of being an ´unpleasant expense´. Only total 150m piling meters are required to take care of the heating and cooling of the normal 100m2 household in Northern Europe. Usually, fewer piling meters are required when only cooling is applied, or the building is located in a warmer region than Scandinavia. We have plenty of successful references in Finland, the biggest references are 600 car carpark in Turku, Finland, and 4 000m2 junior football hall in Porvoo, Finland.

Overall the helical piles are hands down a better foundation method for eco-buildings than concrete foundations. Helical piles have about 50% lower carbon footprint than concrete foundations of the same capacity. By using helical piles, you don´t need excavation works, soil removal, frost protection, concrete or a dewatering system. It´s also much faster and cheaper than a "traditional" concrete foundation. Also, the load capacity of the helical piles can be verified more reliable compared to concrete foundations. Because of the lack of excavation works and compact installation equipment the site stays clean and undamaged. The bottom of the building is not touching the ground so it stays ventilated, dry, and mold-free. Helical piles are possible to install in all weather conditions, which is not the case with concrete.

It´s good to do some comparison between foundation methods, and choose the one that sounds the most logical for you.



Rotopile Lda.
Rotopile Lda. April 16, 2022, 11:26 a.m.

Forgot to mention that the helical piles can be recycled, which is one of the most important ecological aspects. The pile can be easily unscrewed and recycled, or even used again.