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Thread: Leveling yard

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Posts
    7

    Default Leveling yard

    I want to level about 1100sq of my back yard that has sod. I will be covering it with fill dirt(clay) 2 feet high. Do you think I need to remove the sod?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,617

    Default Re: Leveling yard

    Burying the sod that deep, no, you won't have to remove it.

    Before you fill, make sure that you are not going to be creating drainage problems for yourself or your neighbors with your plans. It also wouldn't hurt to call out Dig Safe to locate utilities and such, at the very least, you'll have a map of where things are. Best case scenario, this call will prevent you rupturing/breaking something while moving that volume of material around.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    SoCal
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    5,443

    Default Re: Leveling yard

    That's a lot of dirt. I assume you have the dirt imported to your lot and you have at least a bobcat to move it around and compact it.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Tennessee
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    1,419

    Default Re: Leveling yard

    I have to agree with A. Spruce and caution you about drainage and storm runoff. If this is just a low spot in the yard that fills up with water when it rains, it may be a code requirement if you community requires that storm water runoff be contained within your yard.

    If that is the case, you might want to look into some landscaping in this area with plants that quickly absorb a lot of water.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Posts
    7

    Default Re: Leveling yard

    Thanks for your input. I am building a retaining wall which will have the drainage set behind it flowing away from the house. And the slope will be 5 inches over the 20 foot span. Is this what you meant by watch my drainage?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
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    7

    Default Re: Leveling yard

    The current slope is from 0 to 24 inches and i was going to instead of removing all the sod which is killing me so far only remove the sod when it will be covered by about 12 inches of fill dirt.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
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    7

    Default Re: Leveling yard

    I am also trying to find out whats a good level to do compaction is it ever 6 inches 12 or compacting the whole with like a jack tamper is fine?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,617

    Default Re: Leveling yard

    Quote Originally Posted by michael1974 View Post
    Thanks for your input. I am building a retaining wall which will have the drainage set behind it flowing away from the house. And the slope will be 5 inches over the 20 foot span. Is this what you meant by watch my drainage?
    Sort of. In most municipalities it is illegal to redirect run-off to neighboring properties, some even limit drainage to municipal systems, so it is important that you know the rules of your location before you start backfilling and grading your property.

    There is no need to slope your retaining wall or the ground behind it, more than likely the water is going to permeate the fill to the bottom of the wall to look for an exit. You will probably want to install a drain tube along the back of the wall at its base for this purpose, then you can redirect the drainage wherever is conveniently allowable.

    Compaction, every 6" would be sufficient and use a whacker plate. You don't need to beat it into a rock, you're just trying to get the "settling" out of it before stacking more dirt on top. Ultimately, the compacted layers will settle considerably less over time.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Posts
    7

    Default Re: Leveling yard

    Oh I thought using a jumping jack tamper on clay was better.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,617

    Default Re: Leveling yard

    That will work too, I'm just saying that you don't want to over-tamp the soil or you won't get anything to grow or get good drainage through it.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

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