Why a Subsurface Soil Investigation Must be Conducted Before Construction?

If you want to start a new construction project, you have probably been told about the need to perform a geotechnique study to test the soil. Subsurface soil investigation sounds expensive and you might be wondering if you truly need it. The following are the main reasons soil testing is important:

It is a Requirement

Soil testing can be required by your local building department before a permit is issued. Or the geotechnical engineering company may also need to test the soil to develop design parameters. Whatever the case is, your construction project won’t be able to proceed without a subsurface soil investigation.

Identify Site Challenges

Soil conditions can be highly variable and may present major construction challenges. Subsurface soil investigations help identify such challenges before construction begins and offer information for mitigation planning and budgeting. Sometimes, these investigations may identify challenges that can be costly to mitigate. You may have to sell the site and look for another where you can build because of the costly challenges. Discovering these challenges before you invest resources, time, and energy into developing the site is better than being sorry later.

Give Information on Foundation Design

A geotechnical study offers engineers information design parameters. Engineers need these parameters to complete the design of the foundation. Although they could design the foundation based on preliminary design parameters, the latter must be verified by conducting an excavation observation. Should the final design parameters be different from the preliminary ones, a foundation revision will be necessary, resulting in significant costs.

Give More Information Important for Contractor Estimates

Through a subsurface soil investigation, engineers get recommendations related to site grading and drainage, earthwork and excavation operations, foundation drains, and others. This information allows contractors to make assumptions on future requirements. As a result, they won’t end up with different estimates and deal with costly changes to orders.

Offer Peace of Mind

Building construction is a time and money investment. Regardless of the amount of money you spend on a building, it can only last if it has a stable foundation. Similarly, a foundation needs to be stable to last, which means getting adequate support from the underlying soil. A subsurface soil investigation helps engineers understand the subsurface soil conditions and behavior. This is important in the selection, design, and construction of a stable foundation. By having the investigation carried out when the project starts, you enjoy peace of mind as you know your investment is supported by a stable foundation that can withstand underground challenges and the test of time.