Time For Earth To Settle

 
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Old 03-02-2012, 11:47 AM   #1
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Time For Earth To Settle


Hi everyone and thanks in advance for your help.

I have a clien who has had a new sewer line dug through their front law. Last year, probably in the fall by the look of the mud.

It's probably about 8' deep and 50x20, the earth is raised about 18" above grade. What I need to know is the time line for this to sink back down, I assume most of it was in the ground and settled before the line was dug. If I scrape all this off with a bobcat will the lawn sink that 18" down the road?
Thanks again
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Old 03-02-2012, 12:15 PM   #2
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Re: Time For Earth To Settle


You don't say your soil type, but where I live (heavy clay) there is no timeline. It comes down to how much rain we get. A couple of good thunderstorms will settle backfill in a matter of a week or two, but if it's dry or frozen, it basically won't settle on it's own.

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Old 03-02-2012, 04:52 PM   #3
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Re: Time For Earth To Settle


you fughing up a septic mound system? or is this a city sewer? if it's a septic system, stay the fugh off it. if it's a city sewer, and i can't imagine how it could be being the area is 50' x 20'....i'm curious, how do you know it's 8' deep?
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Last edited by dayexco; 03-02-2012 at 04:57 PM.
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Old 03-05-2012, 06:30 AM   #4
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Re: Time For Earth To Settle


50x20 what? Feet, inches?

Last edited by Morning Wood; 03-05-2012 at 06:50 AM.
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Old 03-05-2012, 09:23 PM   #5
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Re: Time For Earth To Settle


Does it look kinda like this, except burried and blended into the surrounding grades?



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Old 03-07-2012, 08:06 AM   #6
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Re: Time For Earth To Settle


thanks for all your responses

the area was dug out in a front lawn to run a new sewer pipe from the home to the city line. there is no septic system.
the reason i assume its about 8ft down is that the sewer runs from the foundation does it not?
im not sure why its such a large area 20ft by 50ft, any advice would be appreciated.
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Old 03-07-2012, 06:34 PM   #7
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Re: Time For Earth To Settle


You can figure the depth by going into the basement or crawl space and measuring where the sewer line leaves the house
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Old 03-07-2012, 08:04 PM   #8
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Re: Time For Earth To Settle


Thanks for the advice re: finding the depth, what I really need is a rough formula ei;
Xdepth with Xraised earth will settle after Xtime or with Xamount of rainfall

Thanks again to everyone for your input
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Old 03-08-2012, 12:04 AM   #9
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Re: Time For Earth To Settle


I think what everyone is getting at, is that there's just no simple answer to your question. It just depends on too many variables.

A lot of the jobs we do, when compaction of backfill is not required, seem to need to sit through a complete winter in order to fully settle into place. The freeze-thaw cycles and the consistent leaching of meltwater down through the soil seem to help consolidate the material. But...with the mild winter we've had, things don't seem to be settling as well this year.

If your homeowner is in a rush, then the only thing you can do is dig it back up and properly compact it in lifts as you backfill. Otherwise it's a matter of 'wait-and-see'.

You may also want to find out who did the job in the first place, and see if they imported any bedding material (or other material) that would cause there to be excess backfill material.
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Old 03-08-2012, 07:24 AM   #10
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Re: Time For Earth To Settle


A well placed soaker hose works wonders for dirt settling. I know of one supervisor that does it during dry spells on every home around the foundation overdig, with excellent results. As previously mentioned, how fast it settles is mostly dependent on snow/rainfall. This year It's been wet around here, & settling has been pretty good naturally.

It would help to know how much gravel fill the plumber used to install the new line. It could be he just didn't want to haul any dirt off.
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Old 03-08-2012, 07:43 AM   #11
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Re: Time For Earth To Settle


I always tell people about a year depending on rainfall

That being said I have had a driveway settle 10 years after in clay

I have also had stuff settle in a couple months

I have a 4 foot pipe with hose threads that I can saturate a hole if i need to

Also when you mound up the soil the water runs off

It seems to work better to keep it flush after you dig
then it seems to settle a bit right away Letting the run off into your hole expediting the settling process

So I make a little stockpile if possible
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Old 03-08-2012, 07:53 AM   #12
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Re: Time For Earth To Settle


Xdepth with Xraised earth will settle after Xtime or with Xamount of rainfall

Add Xamount of soil compaction at the time it was piled up, add Xtype of soil (clay,sand,rock?) This should work out to be between a year or five years.
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Old 03-08-2012, 02:13 PM   #13
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Re: Time For Earth To Settle


It depends on how well it was compacted, which noone but the previous contractor would be able to answer.
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Old 03-18-2012, 05:51 PM   #14
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Re: Time For Earth To Settle


If he's definitely tied into city sewer and not on septic, just scrape off the excess dirt and install the lawn. Just make the customer aware it could possibly settle more and there is nothing he can do about it. Just make sure the pipe is buried deep enough where you wont damage it driving on it with a machine.

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Old 03-18-2012, 11:14 PM   #15
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Re: Time For Earth To Settle


If the soil is sandy, it also depends somewhat upon what phase the moon was in when the excavation took place.

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