Kilkis wrote:They use large diggers to excavate the whole area where the house will stand to a depth of about 1 m so it probably doesn't make much difference what they are excavating. There will almost certainly be large rocks below the surface whether there are ones on the surface or not.
The main problem is if they hit bedrock, although that can also be an advantage. For example I know of plots where plans were submitted for a two storey house plus an underground basement. When they started to excavate they rapidly hit bedrock and applied for building permission for the basement to only be half height below ground, i.e. it became a two and a half storey house. That meant that it was possible to put windows in the basement and make it habitable.
bobscott wrote:Cost could be anything, depending on size of plot, access for heavy plant etc. Why not get a few quotes from builders, to include site clearance and then make a decision? Bob.
Kilkis wrote:I'm not sure what you mean by soil tests?
Jeffstclair wrote:Kilkis wrote:I'm not sure what you mean by soil tests?
I think it depends on where you are ... It's not like in the UK where house are built on land that has had many uses , land fill , old quarry workings , reclaimed land , drained marshland ,and so on where they bore a hole and take out a core and examine the layers ...I think here they'"might" get a JBC and dig a deep but small hole and the guys with Ipads come and have a look down it and then charge you.... and then tell you to add more steel and more concrete ...
Kilkis wrote:That was Jeffstclair's reply not mine. I have no opinion on soil types. I am not a geologist or a civil engineer.
Civil engineers have a general idea of what the ground structure is in different areas but I am not aware of them doing tests on specific plots. For example, I am pretty sure that the civil engineer knew that the plot I quoted above had bedrock not far before the surface. It wasn't a shock to them if you understand what I am saying. They know where the water table is in each area because virtually all the water comes from underground aquifers and they know how deep they need to bore the wells. I can't really see what else they need to know? The steel used in the construction is based on earthquake resistance and I don't think it varies from plot to plot. The house is built on an approximately 1 m deep reinforced concrete box, or matrix of boxes, full of soil and rubble. On top of that is a reinforced concrete skeleton of pillars, cross beams and ceiling with the reinforcing tied into that in the foundation box. The skeleton is filled in with two layers of 4", partly hollow, engineering bricks with a 2" gap between. The gap is filled with expanded polystyrene sheet. The whole thing is then rendered inside and out with three layers of render. The first layer is rough and uneven, i.e. it is simply thrown on. The next layer is also rough but it is even, i.e. it is plastered on. The final layer is smooth and even. I would recommend embedding plastic mesh in the first two layers overlapping the joins between the skeleton and the brick work to help stop cracking due to differential thermal expansion.
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