The Story Behind Helical Piles

We all know what helical piles are but when were they first used? What’s the story behind them?

Their story works for the other term screw piles since they are interchangeable and also known as that.


They got their first description in 1836. For their time, it was definitely a revolutionary technology. It was marked by Alexander Mitchell in the Civil Engineer’s and Architects Journal in 1848. Following its development, it was used for lighthouses, bridges, and piers. You can see how they got their name! They are solely responsible for the construction and erection of more than 100s of lighthouses in the 1800s on the U.S. east coast. Helical Piles were originally made from cast or wrought iron. This meant that they have limited bearing and tension capabilities. In today’s day and age, you know that they are made out of high-quality steel able to withstand in excess of 2,000 kN.

helical piles - foundation piers

Even after more than 170 years in use, helical piles (helical foundation) are used throughout the world to this day. It can support small, medium, or large projects. Whenever you need foundation support, you can bet that a helical pile will be the best bet to do the job.

Screw piles, screw anchors, helical anchors, or simply helical piles, it doesn’t matter how you call this great anchor system. It works.

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