Home Excavation Today


When watching the History Channel, you might spot a major dig going on -a massive archaeological excavation. It might seem tough to imagine, but someday, you may hire a crew for a home excavation. While we doubt you will need to explore the history of the prior homeowners using this method, many home improvement projects require excavation.

What type of projects require excavation? Everything from putting in a swimming pool to installing an underground storm shelter requires excavation. Foundation repair, adding a lower floor to your home, and many other projects mean hiring a professional excavation crew. Let’s consider these projects and the other contractors that work with the excavators to accomplish these major home improvements.

Dumpster Services For Your Excavation

Before your excavation crew arrives, hire dumpster rental services to deliver a dumpster. They will also pick it up and haul off its contents after completing the project. Hiring the dumpster rental yourself ensures that you control how long the dumpster remains on the property and that you can keep it there while other contractors do their jobs.

Some home excavation crews include a dump trailer in their estimate. You still need to rent a dumpster if you will have other work going on because other construction crew members need to dispose of items, too. Ask to have the dumpster charge removed from the excavation estimate and rent a dumpster, so you only pay once and you control when the dumpster gets picked up. By doing it this way, you have the dumpster for the duration of the project and save money.

Soil Delivery and Services for Curb Side Appeal

The landscaping you want to accomplish might require home excavation, including digging garden beds and building raised beds. While most commercial lawn services plan and plant gardens, lawn covers, and small trees, they don’t handle the dirt moving. For that, you need to hire an excavator and other important contractors.

Creating your dream landscaping might require top soil delivery, sod delivery, and an arborist or local nursery delivery. Some landscapers handle all of the pickup, delivery, and installation for you, but just as many only design the landscape and install it. The landscape architect who designs the yard and plantings may coordinate with frequently used vendors to obtain the materials but have each vendor make its own deliveries.

Rent Equipment for Big Projects

Perhaps you love doing things around the house. Your devotion to home improvement may rival the character of Tim on “Home Improvement,” played by comedian Tim Allen. It won’t be funny if you attempt your home excavation with the wrong tools. Something the size of a koi pond might seem small while you plan it, but you can’t really dig one with a shovel.

Check your local home improvement center for information on heavy equipment rentals. You will need to rent something designed to move earth, such as a bulldozer or tractor with a front bucket attachment. If you have never handled one of these types of machines before, consider partnering with a more experienced friend on the project.

Once you have secured your rental equipment, load it onto your trailer and drive it home. You might choose an afternoon rental, so it’s important to pre-plan your project. If you typically wing it, forgo that temptation with heavy equipment involved. Have a written, mapped plan ready for your project that you follow vigilantly.

Swimming Pool Excavations

For larger home excavation projects like installing a swimming pool, you’ll need the services of a professional swimming pool construction crew. These companies provide pre-designed swimming pools and customized designs. While a pre-designed option costs less, you may want something more exciting than the typical kidney-shaped swimming pool. Custom swimming pool designs may include slides, waterfalls, and gardens that blend them in with the rest of the scenery.

The home excavation for a swimming pool typically requires giving up the yard that will hold it while the crew excavates the land, installs the liner, and pours the cement for the pool. That could take weeks and, if inclement weather moves in, the time you can’t use your yard gets extended.

Many pool contractors work with landscape planners to create a unified recreation area. This may include a deck that wraps around the swimming pool and plantings. These small projects also require some excavation.

Why You Should Excavate Your Home

We mentioned foundation work as a reason to use an excavation crew. When a homeowner finds foundation damage, such as cracks or missing chunks, they need to have the damage addressed quickly. When a home sinks, raising the foundation may require home excavation first, so the crew can reach the bottom of the cement slab. After lifting the home using house jacks, and then shoring up the foundation, the crew removes the house jacks and replaces the removed fill.

Excavation For Your Old Driveway

Updating your existing driveway or putting in a new one also requires home excavation. A construction crew first demolishes the existing driveway, loading it into a dumpster. If you want an expanded driveway, the hardscapes crew will excavate the area necessary to install it. They then mix the concrete for installing the concrete driveway replacements, pour it, and level the cement.

While you have a hardscapes expert at your home to install a driveway, consider adding a walkway and garden paths. These small projects take only a little excavation to create a depth of two to four inches for the concrete. Once installed, your landscape offers a unified collection of hardscapes that pulls together the yard and its other elements, increasing your curb appeal.

Adding a Patio

Your home might sparkle with a patio outside its back door. Forget a simple cement slab and instead install a stone and cement outdoor kitchen. A patio offers more than a space to sit while eating outside. Today’s outdoor spaces rival the living room or den as enjoyable places to spend time.

They require excavation though because the patio functions similarly to a home’s foundation. To install any hardscape like it, the construction crew must first clear and level the ground. That requires removing some dirt to create a smooth area about two to four inches deep in which to pour the cement for the slab.

In some homes, the patio forms the foundation of the outdoor space, but the homeowner adds to it. In these cases, they may have the construction crew add a portico or pergola on top of the patio to create a shaded space or create visual interest in the yard.

Installing a Cement or Stone Fence

While chain link fences do not need an excavated area, installing a brick, stone, or cement fence does. Typically four to six inches in width, these fences require digging a trench to create a level area for the installation. Excavating this area takes careful attention to detail. The first few inches of the wall go in this trench and anchor it into the ground.

You won’t usually have to hire a separate excavator for this project. The fence installers that erect these masonry fences typically handle the entire process. These companies design the wall or fence, excavate, and install the masonry items as a unit.

Fountains and Visual Interest Items

Some landscape architects include large hardscapes in their designs. These usually appear in designs for luxury homes and feature either a fountain or a large visual interest item such as a sculpture, boulder, or other large conversation piece. Although they seem to sit on the ground, installation of these items requires excavation in the size of the item’s base.

The excavation for these items may require hiring a dirt-moving crew. Other landscape architects may employ their own crews, including dirt movers who handle small-scale excavations. Either way, the landscape architect should apprise the homeowner of the need for the creation of this foundation for the item’s base.

Building a Home Addition

Adding on to your home going outward or downward, instead of upward requires significant excavation. The construction crew clears the land and excavates the area before laying the foundation. Additions must have a foundation, just as the original home does. Like the other projects that need a cement slab, these usually go to a depth of about four inches, but some require eight.

Demolition Crew to Do the Hard Work For You

In most home improvement jobs that replace an existing hardscape or change the appearance of an existing element of your home, you will need a demolition contractor. This crew handles the demolition of the structure and the removal of the debris. Some construction companies recycle cement after demolishing a hardscape, so if ecology matters to you, locate such a firm.

Demolishing the existing driveway or other hardscape might seem simple, but it requires heavy equipment and experience. This precursor to home excavation uses jackhammers and bulldozers to eradicate the original structure, whether a driveway, sidewalk, or fountain. They may look easy to operate, but they require strength and knowledge to use.

General Information on Home Excavation

Although many projects use excavation, most homeowners miss it when making a list of needed contractors. That’s because most people think of home improvement in terms of small projects that require one specialist. They typically improve a bathroom or kitchen, requiring the hiring of a plumber or electrician. When they add a deck, they hire a deck builder.

Small improvement projects like those only require a single individual or crew. Large-scale projects, like landscaping a home or installing a swimming pool or tennis courts, require many subcontractors, typically coordinated by a general contractor. The general contractor may hire all of the subcontractors or the homeowner might, but the general contractor coordinates them.

When you decide to add a large-scale project to your home, coordinate with your general contractor, especially if the individual does not hire all of the subcontractors themselves. Ask what positions the project requires. This lets you know who you need to hire to finish the job. The general contractor should provide you with a comprehensive list that includes an excavation crew.

Prepare for the loss of your yard for a few weeks. Large-scale projects take up a lot of space because the construction crew typically parks its equipment at the site. The site might be your backyard, meaning you will have a view of bulldozers and other heavy equipment for a while.

Talk to your family members before starting the landscaping or home improvement project. Convey to them that although a swimming pool makes a cool addition to a yard, it requires giving up the yard for a few weeks. While children might not enjoy that, you will need to make them understand how dangerous the excavated hole in the yard and the equipment is.

Create a plan with the general contractor for paths to access the necessary areas of the yard. This means you will have a predetermined pathway from the house to the garage and to any shed in the yard. Mark these paths clearly with red rope or yellow police tape to create a visual reminder that no other area of the yard should get used while construction, especially excavation goes on.

Home Improvements that Use Excavation

Many home improvement projects require excavation. Some people don’t realize they need an excavation crew to accomplish this. Most people guess that a swimming pool requires excavation, but they’re surprised to learn that a patio or sculpture does. When you decide to start a home improvement project, research it online first. Hire a general contractor to oversee the entire project who handles hiring the subcontractors, so you don’t have to concern yourself with renting dumpsters or hiring the excavation crew.

Hiring for a project that requires excavating can be done easily. General contractors make the process simpler. If you do need to hire an excavation crew, look for one that works with a landscape crew, so they can replant the area afterwards.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *