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Question DetailsAsked on 7/28/2016

How much does it cost to remove 85 yards of soil

I need about 85 yards of fill removed from when the excavation company dug a foundation for an addition to the house.

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1 Answer


Oops - sounds like the contract for that work should have included disposal of the excavated material - would have been cheaper to do it then than it will be rehandling it now.

Assuming this is usable fill material (dirt and/or topsoil in layman's terms), not land clearing debris or sod and muck or such, and not contaminated by sewage or fuel oil. Also assuming not a terrible trucking cost - either a lot of city traffic before you get to the outskirts, or a real long way (say over 20 miles or so) from his normal service area.

And of course, if you have an on-site location where you could use this for levelling land or runoff control berm or such or building a landscaping mount or beds, a LOT cheaper than hauling it off. You could also ask neighbors if they want some fill - but from a liability standpoint if so I would cut a deal with contractor for the removal at reasonable cost to you for that, and let him cut a separate contract with the neighbor for the hauling and dumping in his yard - that way you are not at risk for any damage to the neighbor's property.

1) if fully accessible to dump truck and utility tractor or bobcat loader or such - probably about $5-10/cy depending on whether he has another customer who can use it, or has to take to a disposal site or landfill (they use it as daily waste cover) for disposal. Truckload commonly 8-15CY though with tractor-trailer rigs can reach 20-25cy depending on local oad limits - so you are talking about 4-11 loads depending on Excavation Contractor's (your Search the List category to find contractors for this, though Landscaping contractors will also do it) load capacity. Some with 10-15cy dump trucks also have 6-20cy "pups" - trailers - so can get up to the range of a large end or side-dump tractor and trailer rig or even larger in some load limit areas. So - for this scenario - probably in $425-850 range, though sometimes if good fill material and he has another job for it he may take it away for free - but rarely, usually only if real close to his other job and he needs it right now.

2) If tractor or loader can get to pile but not the truck so tramming by the loader is needed to haul to truck and dump, or some fencing removal and replacement is necessary to get to the pile, probably about $10-15/cy for $850-1275 - again assuming he does not have an immediate use for it, which might bring it down to a few hundred $ for just the fence removal and replacement if you cannot DIY on that.

3) If boxed in now so no reasonable loading equipment access (or you don't want it tracking over new lawn or such), then probably about $15-25/CY for hand-shoveling and hand-tramming (hand wheelbarrow or power wheelbarrow) from pile to area within 50 feet or so where truck can get, to dump it into loader bucket to get it into the truck or into a conveyor (probably rented) to load truck - so about $1275-1700 range in that case.

4) Add up several negative factors like bad access, poor tramming conditions (mud or such) and low load limits on local roads and it could get into the $2000 range or more, but unlikely.

BTW - I would avoid having him park on driveway or maneuvering tractor on drive, especially if asphalt, to avoid wheel dents from loaded truck sitting there and cracking and tire scuffing the surface - a LOT easier to repair a few dents or ruts in the lawn than a scuffed up or cracked driveway.

BE sure to get lump sum bid for the entire job not by the truckload or ton/yard - then it is HIS issue how many truckloads it takes to move it and exactly how many tons/yards are in the pile, with no argument room about how much there was. Price it by the truckload and you New Jersey type shyster contractor will probably show up with a short-bed foreign pickup and count each 1/2 yard hauled as a truckload.

Make sure contract or invoice - BEFORE he starts hauling - stipulates either what public dump site he is disposing of it at, or that he is reselling to other clients or using on another job he has, so it is clear you are not involved in it if he dumps it somewhere illegal like off the side of the road somewhere.

Also, contract should indicate surface condition it is supposed to be left in - machine clean (so maybe 1/4-1/2 CY miscellaneous ridges and roughless left), machine scrape to original ground, or hand-raked clean to original ground. Maybe $100 difference in so between the three.

Also - make sure, if running on lawn or such, to locate and mark sprinkler lines (will commonly break if run over on unfrozen ground, definitely if heads are) and do not have it done after significant rains or watering if on lawn or fine-grained soil because the truck will dig in too much, or may not even be able to get to the locations needed.

One other thought - since you are paying (assuming not being just trammed to neighbor's house) for the hauling, if you need landscaping materials in bulk or topsoil for starting lawn or such in your yard, having him bring them as a backhaul and placing/stockpiling where you want them would undoubtedly be cheaper along with this job than as a separate job.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD

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