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Old 07-25-2012, 11:01 PM   #1
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Ground prep for concrete


About ready to lay our concrete pad (8x16) and had the stump grinder guy over today to take out to massive stumps. He said I would be fine to leave the wood chips (lots of them) since I'm bringing in about 4" of fill dirt before laying the pad.

You guys think I'm okay not cleaning out the wood chips?

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Old 07-26-2012, 01:09 AM   #2
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Ground prep for concrete


Clean them out, they rot and leave gaps.
Also not dirt for fill but gravel.

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Old 07-26-2012, 05:46 AM   #3
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Ground prep for concrete


The stump grinding guy is the last guy I would depend on for advice on prepping the ground for concrete. Idealy you should have someone come in and remove the rest of the stump that he left just below the surface of the ground and have it filled properly. Once that starts to rot all of the support under the slab will be gone.
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Old 07-26-2012, 08:16 AM   #4
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Ground prep for concrete


Pull out all the loose wood chips and replace with granular (gravel) material, compacting every few inches as you fill.

Technically, the stump "could" rot out and create a void, but in reality it takes decades, often even longer, for it to become a significant issue.......
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Old 07-26-2012, 09:32 AM   #5
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Ground prep for concrete


I had a stump ground because it was in the way of my stair landing for my deck (5' x 4' concrete pad) Just the "spongy" feeling you get from walking over the wood ships was enough to scream "get them outta there" for me. I would certainly not leave them. I still expect the pad to move in a few years just because the stump grinder could only go about 12 or 16" underground.
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Old 07-26-2012, 02:11 PM   #6
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Ground prep for concrete


You know I figured he didn't know what he was talking about.

I'll get out most of it, and probably move the remainder of the contaminated dirt to an area where the concrete won't be.

I was wondering about the stump rotting, and I REALLY don't want to deal with that. Good news is the stump goes underground about 18 inches away from where the concrete ends. It was a beast because it took a 90* angle and ran along the ground for 3 feet or so before. I've tried to get as many roots as possible, but I don't think I'll ever get all of them.

As for the gravel - I've spoken to 4 different highly recommended concrete contractors out here and they ALL say gravel isn't needed, and just put it straight on the dirt. I thought this was crazy, but after the 4th I started to believe them. We're planning on filling the non concrete area with gravel as well, so we might as well get a larger load of gravel instead of gravel and dirt. It'll be a better base and its cheaper. Gravel it is
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Old 07-26-2012, 04:46 PM   #7
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I was wondering about the stump rotting, and I REALLY don't want to deal with that. Good news is the stump goes underground about 18 inches away from where the concrete ends.
Ayuh,.... It'll be Many Decades for it to rot away,... They're still diggin' stumps outa Ireland that are 1000s of years old....
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Old 07-27-2012, 10:20 PM   #8
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Well I got most of the chips out. Frick that was a pain. Now on to the soil leveling and then in comes the gravel. I've been planning on renting the plate compactor from Home Depot to help out, but I read these aren't okay for soil compacting. Is that true? the top inch or two in the entire area is fairly loose from taking out the old concrete.

Also I did a quick measure, it looks like the deep end of the plot is about 10" inches under grade as it sits. The shallow end by eyeball is closer to 7". That's going to be a lot of gravel. Oh joy.
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Old 07-29-2012, 02:46 PM   #9
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Ground prep for concrete


I don't see why you couldn't compact it with one of those, beats the hell out of doing it by hand. And yes that's a lot of gravel, but its cheaper than making your slab that thick.
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Old 07-29-2012, 06:20 PM   #10
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Ground prep for concrete


Compacting with a plate compactor is pretty typical - I used a plate compactor when I placed the 6" of stone under my patio and sidewalk.
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Old 08-04-2012, 08:11 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by dclay79 View Post
Well I got most of the chips out. Frick that was a pain. Now on to the soil leveling and then in comes the gravel. I've been planning on renting the plate compactor from Home Depot to help out, but I read these aren't okay for soil compacting. Is that true? the top inch or two in the entire area is fairly loose from taking out the old concrete.

Also I did a quick measure, it looks like the deep end of the plot is about 10" inches under grade as it sits. The shallow end by eyeball is closer to 7". That's going to be a lot of gravel. Oh joy.
The general rule is a plate compactor for sandy soil,and a jumping jack for clay.

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