How To Prepare For A Site Excavation Project

Posted on: 1 February 2023

If you're planning to have a site excavator tackle a project, you'll also need to be sure the location is ready. Use the following checklist to ensure your site will be prepared. 


An excavation contractor is going to dig wherever the markers and lines say to dig. Consequently, you need to have a precise survey of the property. Make sure you know where the property boundaries are, too, especially if you plan to excavate close to the line. Also, order a survey before you lay out any of your work so you can be sure the plans and survey stakes will line up.

Likewise, you absolutely need to be sure to locate all of the gas, water, and electricity lines that might be in the ground. You may need to have people from each utility company mark the site.


Once you start surveying the property, you're going to attract official attention. It is best to acquire all of the necessary permits around this time. Make sure you know the rules for your area. For example, some municipalities bar excavation within so many feet of the property line except to handle utility hookups. Never assume the site excavation contractor knows the rules for your area because they usually operate in multiple jurisdictions.

Land Clearance

Try to get all land clearance work out of the way before starting the excavation. Any trees, debris, large rocks, and structural remnants need to go. Some of these tasks may leave behind holes, and you may need to fill those in to allow equipment and people to get in and out.

Soil Sampling

It is also a good idea to send soil samples to a lab. If there are issues with the soil, an excavation contractor will want to know. For example, the soil could be too loose to support heavy equipment. The contractor may then need to use lighter pieces of hardware for the job.

Similarly, soil testing can tell the excavation company what types of equipment to use. For example, they may need to equip their machines differently to deal with dense clay of hard stone.

Use and Disposal Plans

Ideally, your plans for the site will allow you to maximize the use of the excavated materials. This can save you significant money on buying fill soil. For example, a civil engineer might tell you to reuse the excavated soil to level out the property. They can calculate how much is necessary. If you're lucky, there won't be any leftover material. However, there could be a surplus, and you'll need a plan for where to dispose of it.

Contact a local excavation service, such as Piedmont Site Works, to learn more.