After root ball removal: best backfill method

Discussion in 'Hardscaping' started by dovetail, Sep 18, 2010.

  1. dovetail

    dovetail LawnSite Member
    from va
    Posts: 11

    I have removed a large root ball prior to building a patio. The size of the hole is approximately 3 feet by 12 feet and a depth of 3 feet. I plan on raising the area another foot above grade. After compation of remaining soil, I will place a geotex. I spoke to my supplier and he said compacted crusher run best. An engineer friend said 57 stone, then geotex and complete with crusher run.
    The archives indicate various opinions including a layer of concrete.
    What is the best way to proceed?
     
  2. punt66

    punt66 LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 8,538

    what kind of soil is there now? Typically i will not do any paver work with a mix match under it. Because it will settle differently. What i have always done in that situation is to even out each layer so each soil type is the same thicknes and plate each lift. so if i were you i would dig up and loosen what is there and redistribute it and plate it. Or even use a jumpin jack for that layer. Then add your lifts and bedding. I hope that made sense. But some of that depends on soil type. If its gravely and you can get gravel then i may just fill it and jumpin jack the hell out of it and move on. If it is clay then i would redistribute the soil.
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2010
  3. dovetail

    dovetail LawnSite Member
    from va
    Posts: 11

    Thanks for the reply. Yes, I think that makes sense. The soil is mostly clay.
     
  4. DVS Hardscaper

    DVS Hardscaper LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,406

    When we have large holes - we fill them with concrete.

    If you happen to be in northern VA, you have some of the heaviest clay soil I have ever seen. Absolutely no structue to it.

    Yeah, you can use 3/4" gravel.

    Not so sure bout a "jumping jack" tamper on a hole that wide and that long. A jumping jack tamper is better suited for trenches. When you have wide areas - the gravel pushes out from the sides of the jumping jack's tamping pad. The best analogy is to think of a gum ball machine. Now imagine you taking your hand and pushing down on the gum balls. Ok, now imagine what will happen when you do that.

    If you want piece of mind that you'll NEVER have to come back and do warranty work - use concrete.


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  5. dovetail

    dovetail LawnSite Member
    from va
    Posts: 11

    DVS, How much concrete? Or, how thick?
     
  6. punt66

    punt66 LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 8,538

    he has a trench there. Thats why a jumping jack would do well. He needs a plate for the lifts.
     
  7. DVS Hardscaper

    DVS Hardscaper LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,406

    "How much concrete"???

    Just fill the cavity all the way.


    While on the subject - same goes for decking. During our tenure in the patio business we have had instances where folks want to remove a deck and put in a patio of some sort. Thus, we have to contend with the holes from the deck posts. Those holes get filled with concrete. I hate call backs. Concrete puts everything at ease.......




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  8. AztlanLC

    AztlanLC LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,035

  9. DVS Hardscaper

    DVS Hardscaper LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,406

    Nah. Too expensive.

    A footer mix will be jus fine................
     
  10. DeereHauler

    DeereHauler LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 604

    that must have been one strange looking root ball, 3x12x3? so essentially its a footer, if it were my own personal project i would be comfortable using sub base (crusher run) and tamp it in small lifts, but then again we have a lot of shale up here. If its for a customer, on clay, then do what dvs stated, can't go wrong with concrete.
     

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