Let’s Get Grounded: A Look at Pin Pier

At Modern-Shed, we’re often asked: What needs to be done if a site needs to be leveled before placing a Modern-Shed on it?


This is a great question and one that comes up often in hilly areas like Seattle or the San Francisco Bay Area, where many of our customers reside – for these customers, building a retaining wall can get expensive and could require pricey geotech engineering and design work.

For customers in need of some leveling, we utilize what we call pin pier technology.
Our installers are certified by the manufacturer to install these pier blocks. Diamond Pier is one company that we turn to — for more than 25 years, Diamond Pier has created structurally-rated, code-compliant foundation systems that provide safe and reliable footing for deck and outdoor structure projects.
The piers can shave entire days off your project schedule, according to Diamond Pier’s website.
“There is no digging required, and it takes only hand-held tools to install. With no digging and no heavy machinery, you’re left with a clean job site, and a happy homeowner,” states the site.
Modern-Shed’s floor system was designed to be extremely strong, yet easy to install, with four points of load to the ground with small and medium structures and six to eight for larger buildings, said Modern-Shed general manager Tim Vack.
Oversize pier blocks can be used to level our small, medium and some large size structures, so that a full foundation is not needed, as long as the piers sit on firm ground or a poured concrete pad.
Structures over 200 square feet may require more point loads and sonotube concrete pours depending on ground conditions, Tim notes.
“In areas prone to earth movement or earthquakes, many jurisdictions require a full foundation or full concrete slab with hold-down straps which can be quite expensive,” Tim says. “Diamond Pier provides an authorized way to attach our floor system to the ground in a small footprint much like a regular pier block.”
Talk to your Modern-Shed customer sales representative about pin piers if you have concerns about the steepness of your backyard.

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