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Thread: New Pool Build Question regarding excavator yard damage

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    New Pool Build Question regarding excavator yard damage

    My wife and I are starting a pool build in Kansas City in the next 2-3 weeks (would've started 2 weeks ago if not for the historic snowfall we got). Anyway, my question relates to whether or not we should attempt to put down 3/4" plywood at the point of ingress/egress into our backyard to limit damage by the excavating equipment. Our house is fairly close to our neighbor's house at that point (we have about 6-10 feet of space in our yard) so any yard damage is likely to spill onto our neighbor's yard. Anyone faced a similar issue? Do I just let the damage happen and repair or is it worth attempting preventative measures such as plywood (or something else) to limit the damage? I've thought about strapping the plywood sheets together with industrial zip ties or cord but not sure if this is all futile. Curious what others think who've been down this road.

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    Re: New Pool Build Question regarding excavator yard damage

    We just made sure we informed our neighbors that we were getting a pool and hoped that there would be no damage in their yard, but if there was, we would have it completely fixed. It helped that we are friends with our neighbors and they are understanding. We eneded up having to remove a few sections of the fence between our housed and we did damage some of their yard, cut the internet line that was not marked on their side and broke one of their sprinker lines. Our builder was very responsive and most if the items were fixed the same day - when we were finished, the yard was fixed and re-sodded where needed and since this was all last fall - we plan on inviting them over this spring / summer for a swim.

    I don't think the plywood will help much, and might make more of a mess if it breaks apart. If the ground is wet, it will make more of a mess, but can be fixed once they are finished.
    20,000 IG WetEdge Satin Matrix Northshore Plum, Filled 8/24/12

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    Re: New Pool Build Question regarding excavator yard damage

    When the pool in this house was installed, they crushed the irrigation lines in this yard and the neighbors. It went un-noticed and unfixed for a long long time. We bought the house some 7 years later and located one of those leaks. Check around carefully when it all is done.
    23,000 gallon in ground pool with rock waterfall and spillover spa, Aqualink control system, Polaris 380 cleaner, Purex Triton Clean&Clear Plus cartridge filter. Located in The Woodlands, Texas.

    Pool owner since Nov 2008, Trouble Free since April 2009. Happy to help when I can.

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    Re: New Pool Build Question regarding excavator yard damage

    Congrats on the new pool! We live in St. Louis and construction is slated to start soon. The weather has been crazy in this area. Good Luck!
    Paul
    Sterling Steel IGP lagoon 21' x 35' w/6' deep end, Pentair 5g LED lights (x2), Pentair Landscape LED light, Pentiar IntelliFlo VS pump, Pentair 420 Cartridge filter, Pentair IC20, 4 gas Tiki Torches, LoopLoc Ultra Loc II, Deck Jets(x3), Raised Planter Bed with 3 Pentair bronze sheer decents, AquaBot Breeze 4WD, Pentair Legend II

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    Re: New Pool Build Question regarding excavator yard damage

    If you decide to lay down plywood, you'll need timbers, too, on top of the plywood. 2x10's or 2x12's may work if the ground is not too soft but 3" thick timbers are the best.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
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    SCCS's Avatar
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    Re: New Pool Build Question regarding excavator yard damage

    It would depend on the equipment being used by the PB. Someway somehow they need to remove the dirt from the back yard out to the front in between houses. They will either use an excavator and back a truck into the back yard and load it that way, or use a Bobcat skidsteer and make many trips out to the front where they will load it into a truck waiting in the street. Since space is limited (between homes) they will probably use the Bobcat. They will carry about 4-500 lbs of dirt per bucket per trip out. 3/4" plywood will not stand up to this kind of punishment in a grassy area. If there is concrete under the pylwood then it would probably last.
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    Re: New Pool Build Question regarding excavator yard damage

    Welcome to the board Bvo! You've received some great advice so far, but I thought I'd add - be very careful with how moist the ground is right now. Depending on where you are in KC (We're west side by the speedway) once the weather warms up in the next couple days and the snow melts, our yard turns into a giant sponge. I drove through our yard with my truck a couple years ago in the spring and the tire marks are just going away. If you're bringing heavy equipment in - plywood and timbers to distribute the weight!
    16'x32' -> 3' shallow, 8' deep ~22,000 gallon igp - Vinyl Liner.
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    Re: New Pool Build Question regarding excavator yard damage

    sometimes you can rent those big rolls of rubber that equipment is made for these machines to travel on just for these very reasons, from a equipment rental place

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    Re: New Pool Build Question regarding excavator yard damage

    Ask the excavation contractor, I'm sure he'll tell you if it's worthwhile or not as he'll know what equipment is being use.
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    Re: New Pool Build Question regarding excavator yard damage

    Thanks for all the input everyone. My contractor thinks he will tear up the ground (including a small portion of my neighbor's yard) and doesn't think plywood is really going to help but I was willing to take a chance and pay the extra cost myself if there was any real chance of saving damage to my neighbor's yard (I'm the guy who has to live next to my neighbor when my PB is long gone). Sounds like the consensus is the plywood probably won't prevent the problem. Unfortunately, after all my snow melts, the yard will be pretty wet. It'll be a mud pit with the bobcat (no way they can get a truck into my backyard). My neighbor is an older lady and she won't be thrilled with the damage. Guess its better to ask for forgiveness instead of permission!

    Radefield - I'm in Overland Park near I-435 and Stateline.

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    Re: New Pool Build Question regarding excavator yard damage

    Didn't shovel her walk by chance in the snow did you Sounds like you could use some brownie points!
    16'x32' -> 3' shallow, 8' deep ~22,000 gallon igp - Vinyl Liner.
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    Re: New Pool Build Question regarding excavator yard damage

    Wait for the pit that created when they do a u-turn after dumping their load in the truck. I think my grass (I mean dirt) was 12" lower than the surrounding area..
    Pool done!! (backyard = work in progress) 32' x 19' inground freeform with 7' spa, baja step w/ (2) bubblers, stonescapes mini pebble finish, rock waterfall feature, 12" raised bond beam, Intelliflo VS, Whisperflo feature pump, (3) 5G Color LED's, FNS + DE 60, 400K Master Temp, Easytouch 8 w/ remote, Intellichlor IC40, Vision Classic Ceramic Kamado smoker, Margaritaville DM1000!!! Party Coming Soon!!
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    Re: New Pool Build Question regarding excavator yard damage

    I was fortunate that my site was easily accessible, so no worries about damage to neighbors. My quote had line items for both a restore of rough grade and a finish grade - your PB should be OK to agree to provide that and agree to include repair of the access grading? You are right to think about it... but I'm not sure how to stop damage from both the excavation equipment and the removal of the extra fill. If they have a good eye they can gauge how much fill to leave to use for finish grade touchup after it's all done and a few minutes with a bobcat and two guys with rakes should do it? The only decision would be to re-seed and tend it or just get sod - that would depend on what it looks like now and how much it ends up being rutted up and unless you contracted landscape in the pool build I'd expect anything over restore of finish grades would be an adder... Still, with the price of plywood a pallet of sod may be a wash? I'm paying at least 65 cents/foot for plywood and got the sod (installed) at 50cents/foot for the good stuff and 22cents a foot (cash/carry) for the cheapo stuff.
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    Re: New Pool Build Question regarding excavator yard damage

    I live just west of You and our concern was the same- clay soil with a septic line running directly under the path into the yard. I used sheets of 3/4 plywood stacked two thick overlapping each other for a 10ft path on each side of the septic line. We used a smaller kubota combo backhoe/loader to dig the hole and a crane truck to set our pool(fiberglass). I rented a Georgia buggy to move the concrete from the mix truck to the deck.
    If your soil is like ours, your contractor is right- they'll tear the yard up. See if they can use a smaller excavator (weight). I also used a bobcat with tracks not wheels as it distributes the load better. Still tears up the grass though.

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    Re: New Pool Build Question regarding excavator yard damage

    Quote Originally Posted by 4knights
    10ft path on each side of the septic line.
    I was not thinking about septic... but since you mentioned it DO take care if it is near at all. Not just the lines and leach field but be SURE you know where your holding tank(s) are and block them off. We had a guy learn this the HARD way with heavy equipment in our backyard (unrelated to the pool build but still applicable). They were smart enough to ask where my tank was, but not smart enough to remember. I caught the guy with the front wheel of a big truck ON the cover. I told him to get the heck off of it and he cut his steer before backing up. The tire spun the cover, cracked it, and dropped his truck into the holding tank up to the axle. Five hour wait, then a 50 ton wrecker and a several thousand dollar tow bill later he was out. A few thousand more bought me the new tank since he destroyed the cover and cracked the sidewall down a few feet. He was insured and I paid $0. But still... no reason for anyone else to have such an expensive lesson.
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    Re: New Pool Build Question regarding excavator yard damage

    I just informed the neighbors and told them any damage would be fixed. Temporary damage from the building process will be impressive but invisible afterwards. Preventative measures, in our yard, would have been pointless.
    18'x38' Rectangle (3'-8 1/2' deep w/ diving board) - 27K gal. w/ gray plaster
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    Re: New Pool Build Question regarding excavator yard damage

    We talked to our neighbors before. It's a huge mess right now, but I keep telling myself it's sod, dirt, and fence - all fixable. I did give them each a gift card to a restaurant, and of course they'll be invited over to swim when it's all finished.

    Larisa
    19k IG pool and spa under construction (4/2013), pebble, Intelliflo VS pump, modular DE 72 sqft, UV, 400k propane heater

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    Re: New Pool Build Question regarding excavator yard damage

    My neighbor keeps saying she'll be glad when the dirt pile is gone because it reminds her kids we are getting a pool and they are not. I wanted to say 'I hope your visibility over to our pool isn't as good in the summer as it apparently is in the winter!'
    18'x38' Rectangle (3'-8 1/2' deep w/ diving board) - 27K gal. w/ gray plaster
    Hayward equipment (cartridge filter, 2-speed pump, SWCG, automation) View Our Build
    Coverstar automatic pool cover | StoneMakers concrete retaining wall and decking
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    Re: New Pool Build Question regarding excavator yard damage

    After all is said and done just invite them over for a poolside lunch or dinner. Kinda saying THANK YOU for putting up with the mess.
    16,500 gal Roman end with PebbleFina finish
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