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Posted by on Jun 8, 2015 in Uncategorized |

Three Soil Tests Every Homeowner Should Do Before Starting Construction

A key element to the success of your building is the soil. If the soil is too loose then you may have to reinforce the foundation in order to prevent sinking. You can pay to have a professional conduct soil tests for you, but there are a few you can also do on your own. By doing the following three tests on your own, you can help determine what possible costs may go into the construction project you have planned:

Squeeze Testing

There are three different types of soil that you may find on your property. You can determine which kind you have by simply going to an area of your property, ideally where you plan for the construction to take place, and grab a handful of the soil. Squeeze the soil to determine the strength of the soil. If it holds it’s shape and crumbles when you poke it with a stick or your finger, it is loam soil.

This is ideal for gardening, but may need some work to be ideal for construction foundations. Clay soil is more suitable for buildings and other constructions with foundations and is identified by holding it’s shape and staying firm when poked. The final type of soil is sand. Sand is loose and will not hold its shape at all.

Drainage Testing

The last thing you want during the construction process or after your construction project is completed is to have issues with drainage. Not only is drainage important during seasonal weather conditions like storms, but it is also important if you have broken pipes or other water issues in the home. To test the drainage of the area, dig a hole approximately one foot deep and wide.

Fill the hole with water and allow it to drain. Repeat this step several times. if the water does not drain out of the hole into the surrounding earth, then you may have drainage concerns your contractor will need to address.

pH Testing

You may not think that pH testing is important for your soil, especially if you are placing a building as part of the construction. It is important if you plan on placing a garden, shrubs, or other plants around the building then the pH can be vital for their growth. In order to test the soils pH level, you will need to purchase a kit from your local gardening or hardware store. These kits will come with pH strips and soil testing guides to help you determine your pH level and if it is right for your gardening and landscaping needs.

These tests will help you determine what possible issues you may have prior to the start of your  construction project. If you are ready to get started on the project and discuss possible issues with your soil as it pertains to the project, then contact your contractor today.