Fill is exceptionally useful to builders. It allows them to even out the base for structures, providing support and drainage. It can also be used to alter the grade of a piece of property. Fill materials are even commonly used in landscape and hardscape projects.
However, it’s important to choose the right materials for each application.
There are many materials that can be used for fill. For construction in particular, it’s imperative to analyze the needs of your project and select the right fill for the job. Here are some things to consider:
- Do you need a material that can help with drainage?
- Do you need a material that can be compacted?
- What is the soil density like in your area?
- Do you need a material that can accommodate runoff?
If you choose the wrong material, you could end up with a finished structure that is unstable. You can also be faced with pooling water on the project site.
You need the right fill to support your structure. Before you decide on the fill material, you’ll want to prepare the project site. Test the quality and density of the soil, review any drainage issues, deal with underground infrastructure, and consider how your equipment is going to access the site safely.
Site preparation must take into account:
- Safe access to the job site for construction equipment and workers
- An elevation that ensures proper drainage
- Stability at the sub-grade level
- Prevention of future erosion issues
- Grading and compaction around underground pipes
- Selecting fill material for site grading and construction access
Good site prep is key to ensuring the construction process goes smoothly.
The bulk price of fill materials can vary greatly, as do delivery costs. This is something you will have to think about when you plan the budget for your project. There may be some cases in which you can select a different fill in order to save money. However, you should never give in to pressure to choose a less than optimal material just because of the expense, as inappropriate materials can impact the safety and stability of your structure.
It’s vital to select the right fill material for a safe and efficient construction process. If you need advice on fill materials for your next project, contact Tigard Sand & Gravel.