Soil Testing: Why it's Important & What to Expect from Competent Services

Are you in charge of a construction project and want to find out more information about the soil you have to work with? Before construction work can begin, it is always important to figure out the elements you have to work with, and soil is one of those elements. Understanding why soil is an important factor, and the type of soil testing company to use will be beneficial to the overall success of your construction project.

Types of Provided Soil Testing Information

  • Safety and planning permission reports: Every construction site needs to produce safety and planning permission reports for work to go ahead with the plans. These reports include information such as public pipework, environmental assessments, proximity of nearby buildings, and potential safety hazards. Furthermore, soil quality and type is one of the components that both reports require. The technical data received from soil testing is typically more than enough for such reports.
  • Characteristics: Soil investigations can determine the characteristics for the soil which includes the strength, sand content, organics, contamination, compaction and density. This information is important for deciding what material types to use in order to build a structure.
  • Identification: You will understand the exact type of soil that is on your site, and at which locations. It may be that you'll be faced with various types of soil throughout the construction site. This information is important to know because it allows you to calculate what kind of loads any give area can withstand. Also when digging certain soil types are easier to dig than others. 
  • Suitability: Some soil types might not be suitable for your construction project. Figuring this out ahead of time can save a lot of time and money.
  • Soil Development: Any changes that are made to the soil can be monitored to find out if the desired effect is achieved. For example, you might want to change the soil from soft to hard in order to accommodate a certain construction project. 

What You Can Expect from a Soil Testing Provider

  • Support: If there are any decisions to be made where the quality of the soil is a factor the advice of a soil testing company can be priceless. For instance, they will be able to help you calculate what load certain soil types can withstand.
  • Testing: Soil samples should be tested in professional grade laboratories for qualities such as strength, moisture, soil index, foundation load, permeability, consolidation and compressive strength. The more thorough the testing the better your understanding will be of what you have to work with.
  • Software analysis: expect the soil testing service to use software analysis in order to map out the soil in a way that's very accurate. It's also ideal if they can provide reports in ways that you request. You can then pass these on to the different trades when they need them.