What is a Sewer Tap?

If you build a new home or business where there is a municpal sewer district you will most likely have a municipal sewer line main near your property.

If a sewer stub line was installed in the sewer main line, the  stub line is generally run to and stubbed at your property line, if no line was run or stubbed at your property, you may need to tap the municipal sewer main line.

A sewer stub is generally a sewer lateral stub, the size of a stub line for an average home is 4″ diameter. The stub will connect to the municipal sewer line main pipe with a short lateral running generally to the owners property. Most municipal sewer main lines are gravity flow type systems, they could be very deep, the stub line could be 5′ deep coming from the sewer main line running a stub line to your property.

When tapping the main sewer line a tapping saddle sleeve generally works best if tapping a live sewer main. The main sewer line generally has a continuous flow, it cannot be turned off to make a sewer tap, it makes this a live tap or a hot tap, because you are tapping a line that has a continuous flow. This live tap is done with a tapping tool designed special to work with a tapping sleeve, the machine cuts into the existing sewer main line pipe allowing a new connection for the sewer lateral line.

The sewer main tapping saddle allows the machine to cut or drill through a plate type saddle, the plate type saddle has a o-ring seal that fits between the existing sewer pipe and plate type saddle, this seals any leakage, this hub allows the sewer pipe lateral to connect to the sewer main on one side and the lateral pipe on the other side, than it can be run to any new sewer hook-up or new construction project.

Safety is always important when working on sewer main tapping, generally all deep sewer mains will require shoring to protect the workers from a dirt wall cave in, also wear protive glases, gloves and other safety requirements when working on sewer lines.


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What is modern trench excavating technology ?

PDI_0043Generally trench excavating work is done on every construction building project, trenches are for underground utilities—gas lines—sewer lines—water lines—telephone—strom drainage and other buried utilities.

A trench is normally defined as a long and narrow ditch, generally a deeper than wide gully.

Modern trench technology, is the development of specialized techniques, a way of solving problems that require a solution, an applied science or method of appling technical knowledge and technical science to the field of trench excavation.

With modren trench excavation technology and the development of computer software packages, trench excavation cost can be managed and tracked when it is important that the technical part of a project is constructed as designed and engineered.

Modern trench technology also uses pipe lasers, they are used to install pipe with the use of a laser beam and target, with the unit setup in the pipe and programed to the proper pipe grade, this increases the profitable or the amount of pipe installed per day, thus increases the profit for the construction company working at the trenching project.


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Modern technology can be used with GPS systems,  along with computer software systems, they are used on many site excavation trenching projects, some of these GPS systems can be installed on excavating equipment used to dig and install underground utilities.

Technology has improved the trench shoring systems and practice of holding the trench walls up using a trench box PDI_0002type shoring, this allows workers to install utilities without the trench walls collapsing on the workers inside the trench.

Modern trench excavating safety along with technology is an important part of any site excavation.

Modern technology has improved the tools and equipment we use in trench excavation and improve the way we move earth on excavation construction projects.

What Is Topsoil ?

What is topsoil ?RP4200 Picture

Topsoil is the upper fertile layer of soil where plants get there nutrients.

Topsoil is the top layer of soil you can find on any farm field and most yard lawns have a layer of topsoil.

Topsoil has a high concentration of organic matter, plant roots generally obtain there nutrients from this layer of soil. Topsoil natural depth can actually vary from one location to another.

Topsoil is the first layer of soil to wash away during rain storms and other heavy water runoff, some topsoil is blown away during wind storms.

Topsoil has the most natural nutrients that allow plant life to grow abundantly, without natural topsoil little plant life would not exist.

Topsoil erosion is slowed by planting a cover crop on farm fields and other areas prone to erosion, this cover crop also builds the organic matter in the soil.

If farmers do not rotate their crops or fertilize the topsoil there will not be enough nutrients in the soil for plant life

Topsoil areas outside the U.S. in some places have washed away, blown away and used up, now the topsoil is only a few inches deep, this could be a concern here in the United States if caution is not used to preserve our natural topsoil.

Topsoil is held in place by plant roots—lawn grass roots—tree roots—wooded areas roots—any place that has green plant life, there are roots and the nutrients for these plants come from topsoil.

Topsoil is often screened to remove stones and other contaminants not useable by a landscaper or home owner and additives could be added to improve the rich soil for use in gardening, landscaping and top dressing lawn areas.

If your topsoil is a poor quality you can improve the soil by adding natural compost and a good mix of rich topsoil and sometimes fertilizer with lime will improve the soil.

Topsoil often is tested for healthy or unhealthy soil, test often are for acidic soil and alkaline soil, or often PH level.

Topsoil in some areas of the U.S. have more alkaline and is more acidic, the soil could be more silt, sand or clay soil like base.

Topsoil is not easy to produce, natural topsoil takes many years to make naturally, leaves from trees— plants die and rot—cover crops this all makes natural nutrients plant life needs to grow.

For more information go to www.excavating info.com

How to locate a sepic tank

PDI_0008One of the first questions is why do you need to know where your septic tank is located. All single family household dwelling home sewage systems have a septic tank if they do not have a sanitary sewer line or city sewer at their house. Over time because of the usage the tank will need to be serviced, they slowly fill with solids and need to be pumped and cleaned, this you cannot do, you must call a septic contractor that pumps out tanks.

If you are trying to locate your tank and do not have a map from when the tank was installed, sometimes the system inspector or county inspector has a map or system lay out. If this fails you should look in the yard for a low spot, high spot, a spot where there is little grass growth or a brown spot, if all this fails the next process will be go inside.

If you cannot find the tank look in the basement or crawl space for an outlet pipe generally a 4” diameter pipe going through the wall to the outside, all house waste lines should connect to this one line, and run out the wall to your septic tank.

Once you locate the line inside, go outside and mark where it goes through the wall and comes outside.

Now look around, if you see no visible evidence where the tank could be, you may want to measure, the tank is usually 10 to 20 or 25 ft. from the house, this is where the tank should be. Next you need to start poking around to find the tank cover, this could be done by using a ½” to 3/4” rod about 4 to 5 ft. long, if you do not have a rod try a pointed bar or small metal pipe. If the soil is compacted hard you could use a hammer and tap the rod into the ground until you hit the solid tank. If no luck try every couple feet working from the out let pipe, you know where that is, work from the house side back through the tank, this should be a sure thing.

If you cannot find the tank using the probing method you will have to start digging, start hand digging finding the out let pipe as it runs out of the house to the septic tank.

If you give up and cannot locate the tank you should call your sewer contractor they can use a backhoe to locate the tank. This will cost more, but is a sure thing, they will find the tank.


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What is a garden pond

imagesWhat is a garden pond ?

A garden is generally a water feature constructed within a garden or flowered area.

A garden pond is generally a small artificially enclosed body of water.

Many garden ponds have a liner installed at the bottom of the pond and on the sides of the pond this is to hold the water or keep it from flowing though the ground and the pond water level will never stay full.

Generally when the soil conditions are poor, even when a small hole or cavity is dug, poor soil conditions allow the water to flow out and not stay in the pond.

Some garden ponds with liners are only used as seasonal ponds, they could be stocked with small gold fish or other types, other garden ponds are incorporated into a flower garden setting only to enhance the garden area.

Generally a garden pond will need a water supply, many are not fed by springs or streams, they are filled with tap water.

Remember a garden pond will need to be filled or have water added because of evaporation which happens during the hot summer days.

A garden pond could have a pump installed if conditions allow, to move the water and create a water falls type landscape where water would be pumped up and gravity flows down over rocks back into the pond area.

A small garden pond could range in size from about 100 gal. to 1000 gal. over all in gallons size.

Also if a pump system is used, the natural tendencies of the water going bad may not happen because as the water flows around higher levels of oxygen is naturally added to the water.

Some garden ponds a need a filter system installed to reduce the natural amount of algae that could form.

Other garden ponds add chemical treatment to maintain the ecological balance that is sometimes needed because of pollutence.

Always test your garden pond for the proper levels of nutrients.

Consult a responsible and experienced landscape contractor for more information about building a garden pond.


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What is Grading of Land ?

Grading of  land means to cut dirt from a high spot and fill in a low spot, when grading and leveling, dirt is removed from high points and placed in low places making a level area, this type grading is known by excavating contractors as a ” cut and fill ” type grading.

Grading of  land is also known as land leveling in some areas, land leveling is done by grading large fields for farm use or to allow water for irrigation of  large fields planted for crop lands.

Grading of  land for open drainage ditching, with proper grading and slope an open ditch type drainage could be placed in some areas to allow open ditch type drainage of wet areas or allow water to flow into a field for irrigation of crops planted.

Grading is used by construction contractors to level soil or material for base use of buildings, roadways, parking lot base, driveway base, sub grade base and landscaping contractors use grading of lawns when final grading around new home buildings and other uses not mentioned.

Grading of land is used for leveling areas before planting cover crops as seen along highway slopes, ditch areas and shoulders of  roadways, this grading and leveling is important to prepare the base before seeding the cover planting to control erosion.

Grading, when done correctly can be “ eco or green ” friendly for landscaping contractors, grading for proper water flow can stop erosion and construction excavating contractors with proper grading can control erosion. Proper grading is important when installing silt fence on construction projects, silt fence is needed to help control erosion.

Grading and land leveling has equipment designed for this type of grading, a laser system is placed on the grading equipment such as a dozer or grader, grading boxes and land leveling tools pulled by large four wheel drive tractors.

Grading work is used by excavating contractors when specified grades are needed, land leveling tools are designed to help get this work done, GPS laser systems are important when grading and leveling large projects such as fields or construction sites.


For more information go to www excavating info.com

What is a Dump Truck ?

In the beginning excavating contractors used teams of horses that pulled a 2 wheel type cart to haul material on a job site and often teams hauled material at mining sites, these carts were loaded with labors shoveling by hand. The carts were hinged and used the center of gravity to dump the cart after they were loaded.

The 4 wheel wagon with a box type bed was also used by excavating contractors to move material, these wagons had a flat bed and were unloaded when the hinged bed was raised with a front mounted hand hoist, this wagon unit was also loaded by hand labors.

The early truck mounted dump box was designed after the hinged type horse drawn wagon. The dump beds were locked down in front and after the dump was loaded and ready to dump, unlock the bed and the center of gravity principle would allow the box to raise and dump the load.

Hydraulic type dumps beds were designed and first used in the early 1900′s, genarally the hydraulic system was powered by the engine of the truck, a hydraulic hoist was used to raise the hinged bed when off loading the material it was hauling.

As dump truck technology and design grew so did the size of the dump bed. The early dump box was mounted on a truck chassis that rested on the truck frame with a hdyraulic ram mounted at the front of the bed, dump controls were mounted near the driver for easy off loading of the material. The early dump trucks had a front axle and a rear axle with single rear tires, then dual tires, today known as a single axle truck. Next the dump trucks added another rear axle with dual tires, this also allowed the dump beds to become larger, today these trucks are known as ten wheeler dump trucks.

Today excavating contractors have  many sizes of dump trucks to choose from starting with a 3/4 ton dump all the way to 40 or more tons, dump trucks with two axles, up to six axles to carry larger dump beds. On ever construction site you will find dump trucks hauling all types of materials, generally anything that can be hauled and dumped will be moved with a dump truck.


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What is a mini excavator ?

miniExcavatorA mini excavator is sometimes called a compact hydraulic excavator which is a tracked machine. The excavator has a hydraulic arm with a bucket for digging at the end of the arm.
Many mini excavators are equipped with hydraulic blades used for grading and added stability when digging.
Mini excavators with standard rubber tracks  allows the machine to move across asphalt drives and concrete walks doing little or no damage. One of the mini excavators features is low ground pressure for minimal ground disturbance when working at job locations.
Mini excavators are mounted on a platform that allows the machine to pivot 360* degrees,and all controls are mounted in the cab which allows the operator to  rotate or swing the machine in any direction. Many mini excavators have a zero tail swing which allows the machine to fully rotate within the width of the tracks.
All mini excavators have a operator platform or cab where all controls are mounted. This platform area is designed for the operator comfort with the seat, legroom, visibility, hand operated controls and engine decelerator controls are generally standard on all mini excavators.
There are many optional work tools which can be used on a mini excavator—-hydraulic hammers—-hydraulic thumb—-hydraulic augers—-hydraulic angling buckets—-hydraulic angling grading front blades.


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What is a gravel driveway ?

What is gravel:
Gravel is a French word meaning coarse sand.
Gravel is a natural deposited material not found in all areas in the U.S.
Gravel is not—topsoil—fill dirt—sub soil—washed stone—crushed stone stone or clay soil.
Large gravel deposits where formed as a result of weathering and erosion and the great ice age glacier when natural deposits of gravel were formed.
Gravel is commonly known as bank gravel, also sometimes called bank run gravel, is found in a natural form with stones,clay,sand and silt when you dig gravel from a bank.
Driveway gravel generally is gravel of a finer material, sized smaller with sand/silt mixture.
Other gravel used for driveways is a processed or screened gravel, this gravel is screened and sized taking all large oversize material out, making a finer product, this gravel is often used for D.O.T. highway projects and other construction projects.
If properly constructed and maintained a gravel driveway is a all weather driveway.
Gravel driveways generally are quite inexpensive to build compared to an asphalt driveways.
Gravel driveways are constructed by removing the topsoil and soil down to the firm layer of ground, then gravel is placed in layers and compacted to a proper thickness generally 12″ when completed, this is a good driveway gravel base, this base can generally handle heavy traffic even during construction times if properly installed.
Proper grading and drainage are important for the long of life of a gravel driveway.
A gravel driveway is also a very ” eco ” and green environmental friendly way to place a drive in a wooded area or other county settings.
Gravel driveways are great for the average home, gravel driveways can also be used as a heavy commercial traffic drive and have a long life with proper maintenance.


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What Are Excavating tools ?

Excavating means to dig—uncover something by digging—remove earth by digging—scoop out—hollow out a cavity—make a hole, this is excavating and the tools used to do excavating are many.

Digging in your garden is excavating and you could use a shovel or spade to do this work, a garden hole or a rake used to level soil, these are tools used in gardening.

The wheel barrow—pick-ax—sometimes called a mattock—digging bar—landscape shovel—round point shovel are all tools used in excavating.

Also there are bigger tools used for excavating the larger jobs such as a bulldozer this machine can excavate a hole very quickly—a trackhoe machine can dig a trench or excavate a foundation very easier—a backhoe is another tool used to excavate—even a skid-steer can dig dirt and grade dirt, these are excavating tools.

A tractor with a front end loader—a minihoe excavator—farm tractor with a back blade these machines are used around the farm are also excavating tools.

Machines used in rock quarries—like a large rubber tired loader—a large powered front shovel that load large haul trucks are also excavating tools at a very large scale.

There are many tools used in the excavating trade to excavate the soil and these tools are necessary on all excavating sites to construct and complete construction projects.


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