When you think of Kevlar and gas shortages what comes to mind? Certainly not basement wall stabilization! This article may change that and educate you with a few historical fun facts on one of the strongest, most effective products in the basement wall push and basement wall stabilization industry: Fortress InvisiBeam. Read this blog by United Structural Systems of Nashville to discover how Kevlar was born out of a gasoline shortage and why you should have your basement walls protected by a lifetime guaranteed Carbon-Kevlar basement wall stabilization system.
Nothing like trying to tie completely different subject matters together like gasoline shortages, Kevlar, and basement walls. But, if you are experiencing any type of loss to the integrity of your basement walls, whether it be through cracking, bowing, shearing, or tipping, you will be glad to hear how gas shortages, Kevlar, and basement walls relate.
Most of us recognize Kevlar as the top material around the world for protection against handgun ammunition. But bullet armor was not the original intent of this heat-resistant, five-times-stronger-than-steel synthetic fiber. In anticipation of a gasoline shortage, DuPont Chemist Stephanie Kwolek began searching in 1964 for a substance to use for lightweight, strong tires. Colleagues were amazed when Kwolek discovered a fiber in 1965 that did not break like nylon. Her directors understood the significance of her discovery, and by the early 70s modern Kevlar was introduced commercially as a replacement for steel in racing tires.
No extra charge fun fact: After an increase of only 18 cents over the course of 44 years (1929-1973), Americans had an 18-cent increase in gas prices within two years from 1973-1975 (according to energy.gov). That’s the period of time, or gas shortage, that Kwolek’s team was preparing for.
Years later, we move from racing tires to racing boats, where we find Ed Wheatley, owner of Fortress Stabilization Systems and the strongest Carbon-Kevlar straps available. After winning the famed Bayview Yacht Club Race from Port Huron to Mackinac in 1997, Wheatley began making his own 50-foot catamaran out of carbon fiber. The Ford Motor Company took notice of Wheatley’s mastery of carbon fiber, asking him to design and build concept cars, and so did a 20-year basement foundation expert, looking to use carbon fiber in basement repair. Upon realizing he could drastically improve the implementation and design, Wheatley created Fortress Stabilization Systems in 1998.
Which brings us to the one of the most important parts of the article – Wheatley did not create the commonly used carbon fiber strap; he designed and patented the top-performing Carbon-Kevlar strap used in the basement wall repair industry. Because of the design and the materials—including the infamous Kevlar material discovered in 1965—the security you find in the Fortress Carbon-Kevlar basement wall stabilization system is unmatched. Should you ever need basement stabilization services, there’s no doubt that the integrity of the Fortress system, branded as InvisiBeam and offered by USS, secures the integrity of your home.
Proudly made in the USA, the basement stabilization system branded as InvisiBeam consists of top and bottom wall plate anchors and the Carbon-Kevlar strap. While it has no actual beam, Fortress assigned the term InvisiBeam to establish familiarity with what it provides and how it works. The multiple patented components and processes of the system make it far superior to any steel I-beam or carbon fiber product on the market used to repair basement walls. Far more than bulletproof, its Carbon-Kevlar is more than strong enough to entrust the foundation of your home, having been used in the repairing of larger infrastructure repair projects, including bridges and parking garages.
InvisiBeam addresses bowing, tipping, and shearing without dependence on soil stability and is guaranteed for life. Non-intrusive, the Fortress basement wall stabilization system also hides behind paint and drywall with no annual upkeep. How does InvisiBeam compare to other carbon fiber products offered in the industry?
- The only ICC certified, building code approved solution
- Zero material failures in 20+ years
- Best warranty on the market
- Only system with Epoxy Rivet Technology, rim-joist secured top anchor, and anti-shearing bottom anchor
- Produced by the only non-importing, 100% USA company. Manufacturing, operation, tax dollars, and jobs all stay here!
- Lab and real-world tested to be the strongest carbon solution anywhere
Fortress InvisiBeam is the strongest carbon fiber system available. Every lot is tested to meet a guaranteed minimum tensile strength of 234,700 psi, which is above the competition. This is important when it comes to supporting the walls of your basement! To put this strength into perspective, look at the comparable basement wall repair materials:
- InvisiBeam – 234,700 psi
- Steel – 53,700 psi
- Competitor Carbon Fiber – 51,571 psi
- Aluminum – 45,000 psi
The Fortress Carbon-Kevlar system is the complete system for a complete solution for basement walls, and even bridges, engineered and tested to provide the strongest anchoring system top to bottom. Not only is Fortress the first company to develop a top-of-wall anchor, but they also offer the only top anchor that utilizes post-tensioning technology after installation. This prevents any movement of the basement wall. The bottom anchor of the Fortress system is patented with over five times thicker and 125 times stiffer than the competition, using a dual leg solution with specific contact lengths engineered to achieve a 200% safety factor. The Fortress bottom anchor takes the proven American Concrete Institute recommendation for anchoring carbon fiber straps and makes it better.
Here’s a further look into the proven and tested basement wall stabilization system that uses Carbon-Kevlar:
- The open grid technology (OGT) and patented epoxy rivet technology (ERT) are exclusive to the Fortress system. When combined, these not only form a mechanical bond to the wall, but the ERT forms an adhesive bond with over 8,000 epoxy mechanical rivets securing a single strap to your wall ensuring your basement wall is stronger than ever.
- The unidirectional method developed by Fortress creates a basement wall stabilization product with the best composite performance: twice as strong as products using woven carbon fibers.
- Fortress InvisiBeam is the only system that is ICC-ES approved. This certification can be immediately identified by any code official, home inspector, or bank appraiser in the United States as building code approved. The ICC (International Code Council) developed the current International Building Code to protect public health and building safety worldwide. Certification by the ICC-ES means a product and its manufacturing process have been tested, evaluated, and regularly audited by ICC to meet or exceed product performance reliability
- The InvisiBeam basement wall repair system carries a lifetime transferable guarantee. Fortress stands behind their patented product so confidently that the product is backed by a lifetime warranty from homeowner to homeowner. And with zero failures in the Carbon-Kevlar material over the last twenty years, homeowners can secure their basement walls confidently, too.
The next time you see gas prices rising (cough, now), remember the Kevlar discovery in 1965 and the strength the fiber added to homes across America when implemented into basement wall repair (because that’s much better than thinking about a gas shortage). Should your basement walls become compromised, or you find cracks in basement walls, or your basement walls begin to lean, you can trust USS to restore the integrity to your home with the secure Fortress basement wall repair. USS is the only basement wall repair company and basement wall stabilization contractor in the area that offers the warranty-backed, proven and patented, ICC-ES certified Fortress basement wall stabilization service known as InvisiBeam. Don’t let your basement walls suffer due to the lack in strength of other carbon fiber products. If you live in the Middle TN, Southern KY, or Northern AL, area, call USS today for the strongest basement wall repair system available!