Be it the urbanization of small towns or expansion of big cities to megacities, the government’s focus on rapid infrastructure development has come as a boon for the construction industry. So, you must be gung-ho at the extent of opportunity if you are a land and property developer.
Real estates, office buildings, malls, etc. are some of the major construction needs that require utmost attention at every stage of development as they are expected to bear maximum human loads. And it’s the solid foundation of a building that ensures safety of its residents or users. So, what makes a good foundation?
Of course, it’s the quality of steel, concrete, and the expertise of your engineers, but a great deal of the success of your foundation depends on excavation. To implement the complex design of today’s buildings on hardly adequate pieces of land, urban planners and architects place great emphasis on immaculate excavation. It’s the quality of excavation work that determines whether a project can fulfill its goals and remains within the budget.
From the house of Fluid Constructions, known by our volumes of experience and skill sets for high standard of excavation and other services in construction and infrastructure building, we insist on religiously following the below five steps to achieve perfect excavation that goes exactly as planned:
Proper survey of the site, surrounding trees, and constructions
The most significant help a survey ensures is that it shows the property’s legal limits, which are typically overlooked until a boundary dispute arises. If you know the size of your legal and usable area you can avert potential future issues.
Survey plans can also uncover hidden title flaws, point out building encroachments, and show actual property dimensions that do not always conform to (and hence overrule) the deed’s unverified descriptions.
You can learn the following from a survey plan:
- Topographic mapping elements define elevations and notable features such as trees, hedges, fences, sewage access, manholes, and more.
- The size and shape of the land. Also, the contours of valleys, slopes, and depreciation.
- The location of easements and rights of way.
- Houses, sheds, fences, utilities, and any other features that are important to the landowner’s measurements and distances from the boundary.
- The location and description of the objects or markers placed to demarcate the land’s boundaries.
Test the soil of the site before start excavating
Soil test is a crucial step that must be conducted before the start of the excavation process. If soil testing is not done, the building will be exposed to unforeseen threats, which could be fatal in the end.
The primary purpose of soil testing is to determine the bearing capacity. During this procedure, the chemical and physical content of the soil is examined. The earth must be able to support the weight of the structure. The quality of the soil not only influences the carrying capacity, but it also assures that the structure is stable.
The risk of uneven settlement of the foundation is the biggest threat that can loom over a construction. Soil quality is affected by a variety of elements such as weather, climate change, and how the land has been used in the past for what purpose.
Following reasons may lead to uneven settlement that can be averted by soil testing:
- Weak bearing capacity of the soil
- Improperly compacted soil
- Effect of moisture changes on the soil
- Shrinkage and consolidation of the soil
- Presence of trees and vegetation along the line of foundation
Geotechnical investigation of the land
This is another kind of soil investigation conducted by geotechnical engineers or engineering geologists to assess the site’s geological composition and groundwater conditions.
Groundwater and its level has a profound influence on the bearing capacity of the foundation soil. According to soil mechanics, as the groundwater level drops, the pore water pressure in the foundation soil drops, and the effective stress rises, causing the foundation to settle.
Geotechnical studies evaluate groundwater level in order to determine the correct measures to ensure damage-proof construction. There are maps that show the height of the water table and the locations that may be vulnerable to shallow groundwater pooling.
If you are building in a location where the water table is high enough to obstruct your excavation, you will need to install a temporary pump and dig a trench to divert the water away from your excavation site. This may be a difficult undertaking for the new and inexperienced excavators.
Always insist on using the right tools and instrument
Contrary to what it seems from far, excavation requires skill and patience. If you expect the excavation for your project to be precise you need to contract with an experienced and licensed agency, such as Fluid Construction that uses the right instrument for a variety of excavation requirements. This not only helps to deliver a neat and tidy job but also finishes work within the time schedule.
Some common types of excavation projects.
- A rock hammer is used to remove rock from a construction site. Because this is a time-consuming and labor-intensive procedure, using a rock hammer comes in handy for the purpose.
- Compacting and grading – this is typically done to change the land’s form and slope, or to improve soil density. Grade trimmers and motor graders are examples of the equipment utilized in this operation.
- Lifting and moving – you may need to clear an area of trees, debris, and structures at times. This will also necessitate the disposal or relocation of these materials.
Some common types of excavation instrument
- Backhoe loader
- Crawler loader
- Spider excavator
- Swamp excavator
- Zero-swing excavators
- Skid-steer loader
Always insist on taking the best safety precautions when excavating
Safety precautions, like equipment, are another area where some people scrimp. This is especially risky as an excavation site may lead to many types of accidents such as:
- Foundation may collapse due to cave-ins
- People or animals may fall in the gorge
- Damage or destruction of equipment
Many of the disastrous situations that occur at the excavation sites can be avoided by ensuring that the foundation walls are braced, the foundation is supported while it sets, the excavation area is walled off from access, and equipment is appropriately utilized and maintained.