What Does Grading Mean in Construction
The construction process, in general, is quite demanding, regardless of what type of it we talk about, but it can get even more complicated when it is a construction of some skyscraper, for example. Of course, there are ways to make that whole process much easier and less time-consuming, and not every deadline needs to be broken. But in order to accomplish that, we first need to know more about the whole procedure, what it takes, and all the steps needed. Among all other things, grading is perhaps the most crucial one, as it all starts and ends with it, and if this process is not well completed and executed, well, in some situations, it can even put at risk the whole construction. This says a lot about the importance of grading, which is why going with a renowned and prime excavation contractor is always the best way to go, and you can learn more about that if you visit here.
Now, since many are unaware of what grading is and its real purpose, we will start by explaining it a bit more.
What is it?
One of the main questions we need to answer is what the grading is in construction. Now, one with that vast knowledge on this topic might get confused by all the info they can gather via online search, and it’s because there are various definitions. That’s also the reason why we will try to avoid all of those definitions and explanations and answer this question in simple terms so that everyone, even those entirely new to this, can comprehend. Regarding that, grading itself means preparing the terrain for building by adjusting the slope and soil elevation.
In order to accomplish that, workers sometimes need to add and even remove the ground material, and it is done until the terrain is perfectly flat and stable, which means it is ready for building. Keep in mind that grading is not reserved only for new buildings to prepare the terrain for them, and it can be done even around the existing ones to change the landscape look and improve its features. Knowing all this, it’s pretty clear why grading has such a big role in the construction and why, sometimes, it requires more time to accomplish the main goal, and that’s preparing the terrain.
The purposes of grading
Before we decide to take any action and perform something on our ground, we should know its purposes in order to make sure that we are doing the right thing, as sometimes, even having good intentions can do more harm than good and delay the whole process. When it comes to grading, it has three important purposes, which we will try to explain further in the text below.
- Preparing the land surface
It doesn’t matter what we want to build and how big that building should be, as it is crucial to lay the foundation strong enough to support the whole construction. Namely, it all starts from the ground, and if the soil is hard enough and cannot support large and heavy 20 story buildings, for example, then we have only two solutions. The first one is to move the whole project to another location, and the other one is to use soil stabilization methods and materials in order for it to hold and support the entire building.
It is impossible to build anything if the soil is not well prepared before laying the foundation, and one of the main purposes of grading is to accomplish that and make it flat and able to carry the construction. It is also important to fit the new building into the environment, which means making it compatible with other construction’s relative elevations, sidewalks, and streets, and making sure that it is compatible with parking areas to be more accessible.
- Water management and disposal
One of the main problems that every construction could have is water that could come from precipitation and can cause huge problems if it is not properly directed. Not a good enough drainage system can lead and cause wet basements, leakage, damp crawl spaces, and many other wet spots, which can easily cause damage to a foundation and make problems even worse. Water can also cause problems to nearby buildings, and because of that, prevention is the best solution, and grading the soil is the best possible way to prevent it. It’s simple, as water needs to go somewhere, and if the drainage system is not well designed or created in such a way to collect surface water or/and groundwater and direct it away, thereby keeping the ballast bed drained, the whole construction can collapse even while in construction.
- Making the site look aesthetical
Among all other things, efficiency is, understandably, the most important, but it’s also about the appearance and overall looks, regardless of which topic we are talking about, and the same is with grading, if not even more important here. Namely, the role of grading is of vast importance to make sure that the final construction will look just like we have imagined and just the way it was designed. When the grading process is complete, we will be able to see the foundation for a building and a place for patios, driveways, and other significant aspects of one amazing backyard. It will make things much easier for the constructor because they will be able to do their job without worrying about the preparation of the soil or whether it could hold it.
It is impossible to perform grading without the topographical survey, and because of that, it is crucial to know what that means. The topographical survey represents the shape of the terrain with all contours and elevations, and it also contains the re-grading information. Besides that, another significant piece of information that it needs to contain is about outfall elevation since it is crucial for drainage system connection. You should look at it as a complete survey of the terrain, along with every natural or man-made feature and improvement, as it shows the precise location and size of it all.