Digging your own hole can be a smart way to save money on labour and equipment if you are thinking of doing some groundwork. It is easy to run into trouble though.
Here are some basic groundwork tips that can help you cut costs and save time when you are thinking of doing it yourself. With the right preparation work, groundwork becomes easy.
Have a Plan for Emergencies
Whenever you are planning some construction or DIY, you should plan for an emergency. Anything can happen during the construction phase of a job, and the work can be dangerous. Plan ahead for accidents and emergencies and have a first aid plan.
There are many more types of emergencies that an injury or accident though. Digging, excavating, and laying foundations as part of your groundwork construction can cause problems you may not have thought about. It is easy to dislodge a water pipe and cause water leaks that can affect the supply to your home or damage your construction site and the surrounding area.
Leak detection and pipe leak repair is a complicated and time-consuming job that requires an experienced professional. The team at Miracle Leak Detection have the expertise needed to find leaks fast and prevent water damage from doing a job any bigger or costing a lot more money.
Should you require them, Structural Engineers Cumbria, are highly skilled professionals who specialise in designing, analysing, and ensuring the integrity of buildings, bridges, and other structures to withstand various forces and environmental conditions.
Do the Research
Even if you think you are confident and can competently approach the job before you, take the time to research the different elements of the job and the area you will be working in. Not all soil and earth are the same, and people can run into a lot of unforeseen problems simply by digging a hole.
Take the task as a whole and separate it into smaller tasks. Look at each small task, what will be required to complete it, and what tools and supplies you will need. This will all help you to get the job done, but the next step is the most important; assess risks and evaluate the job site.
Digging a test hole is a good first step to help prepare for the job ahead. It does not have to be big; you want to get an idea about the ground beneath you and the soil quality. Dig a small test hole a few feet down and look at the different layers of soil you find. Sandy soils could cause problems, and your groundwork site’s sides may need reinforcement to hold steady while you work.
Prepare the Site for Drainage
Water leaks from pipes are difficult to deal with, but so is water from a sudden downpour or overnight rain that can clog and waterlog your job site. Whenever you are digging trenches, holes, or excavating a large amount of land, you should put measures in place that will help drain water from the site.
This can be difficult to prepare for, especially if your groundwork and foundation laying involve digging deep into the ground. Water drainage pumps can be a handy tool to have but can be expensive to buy or rent. By planning ahead, you can reduce costs and free up funds to spend elsewhere in your build.
Drainage trenches will take some extra work, but the stress and strain of the extra digging will be worthwhile after a torrential rain or storm. If your dig site is flooded, there is nothing you can do until it clears. This can stop all work at a site and waste money on labour that cannot work until much later.
Follow Local Regulations and Guidelines
Depending on the type of work you will be doing, and how it may support structures when completed, there may be several regulations that you need to adhere to for the work to be legal and safe. This may relate to the standards of the completed work, or how the work is performed.
If you fail to follow these regulations and guidelines, the work may be unsafe, or it could affect future planning permission if you are laying the foundations for a property extension or conservatory. Do not be intimidated, however. Many of these building regulations are easy to follow, common sense directives and your local planning authority should be happy to help advise you on the best ways to work to the regulations.
This is an area where professional help can come in handy. Working with an experienced architect, building project manager, or a local builder, can help you plan the job and meet all the local and national regulations. Though this type of consultation can add to costs, it can also help you save time and money in the long run and protect your financial investment.
Groundwork can be fun work, though it can be strenuous. Do not add to the stress and expense of DIY excavation and foundation laying, and plan ahead with these simple tips.