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Old July 31st, 2011, 09:17 PM   #1
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Default Cost to have crawl space excavated?

Has anyone here ever paid a contractor to excavate a crawl space? If so would you mind sharing the cost? Does anyone know of someone on the west side of the state that would be interested in providing a quote/doing the job?

The home in question is a foreclosure that I own which currently has an 18" crawlspace. I would like it excavated to a depth of 36" minimum and smoothed.

The house sits on a sandy loam and is about 1200 sq'. Actual area to be excavated is more like ~800 sq'. The excavated sand can be left in a convenient pile... I don't need it removed from the yard.

I'm not sure who to even call for the job... so far I've tried two different excavators and neither wanted anything to do with the job.

I guess I'm just curious what others have paid in the past as I haven't even a clue what a contractor may charge.

Any help would be appreciated...
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Old July 31st, 2011, 09:20 PM   #2
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wow, how would you even do that??
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Old July 31st, 2011, 09:59 PM   #3
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^^ Shovels. Very short ones.

There are alot of basement conditioning companies around Lansing, I'm guessing it's the same on the west side. They would be the best bet, if the contractors you talked to weren't them. They would at least have the better probability into running into something like this. Who ever would do it is probably going to charge a ton because of the nature of the job. 18', as you probably know, is not that much space to work in. I wouldn't get caught dead doing it.
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Old July 31st, 2011, 10:27 PM   #4
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DIY. Shovels. Buckets. Conveyor system
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Old August 1st, 2011, 12:03 AM   #5
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DIY. Midgets, asians, small children, shovels
Fixed for you
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Old August 1st, 2011, 05:35 AM   #6
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What about some type of vacuum excavator, I know I've seen something like that being used.

http://www.vacmasters.com/airvacuumexcavation.html
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Old August 1st, 2011, 05:38 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by HVYRTFT View Post
wow, how would you even do that??
technically it's how a "Michigan basement" is added to a house after the fact.

a crew of illegals with shovels could do the excavating part most affordably - however, the way it is most often done is to eliminate a portion of the perimeter foundation to provide for easier ingress/egress to that area, which requires pretty substantial temporary supports in that area. They also then typically have to "come in" from the perimeter foundation so as to not to destabilize the original footings.

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3482/...1a4c0f4600.jpg shows a very old one that was done in brick, as an example.

the principle would be similar, but they just wouldn't be going as deep.
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Old August 1st, 2011, 05:42 AM   #8
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My neighbor just had his house raised 2' and excavated a full basement underneath complete with new block walls. About $60K.
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Old August 1st, 2011, 06:34 AM   #9
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How deep are your footings? I wouldn't want to undercut them.
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Old August 1st, 2011, 07:20 AM   #10
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I have not verified the depth of the footings yet. From screwing around in the crawl space, I'm guessing 4' but I'll have to verify that. From what I'm reading online I would need to stay 1' from the footing for every foot down dug.

The house is planned to be a long term rental. It needs the hvac completely redone and some plumbing needs to be moved around/repaired. I'd also like to add a vapor barrier to the floor of the crawl space. Obviously all this work is easier to achieve along with repair in the future with a little more room to work.

I had a number in the back of my mind as far as cost goes and $60K was not the numbers I was thinking...lol. I was kinda hoping $2500-$5000 for this job. Anything over that and I wouldn't even consider it... not worth it for a rental.
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Old August 1st, 2011, 07:22 AM   #11
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i would bet its going to be over $5000
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Old August 1st, 2011, 07:26 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Tizken View Post
What about some type of vacuum excavator, I know I've seen something like that being used.

http://www.vacmasters.com/airvacuumexcavation.html
Interesting. Thanks for the link.

I did read about a few guys that used a big shop vac to excavate a crawl space. They loaded the shop vac on a "sled" and when it was full they winched/pulled the sled out from under the house and dumped the vac... rinse and repeat a million more times and walla they were done. Seams like a decent idea but I wonder how well a shop vac would work/hold up to the task??
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Old August 1st, 2011, 07:28 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigbchevy View Post
i would bet its going to be over $5000
For just the excavation?

Maybe I'm completely underestimating the scope of the project... but I was thinking a couple laborers could do the job in ruffly 80 man hours. Divided by $5000 would equal 62.50/man hour. Seams to be pretty good money for basically just labor.

Last edited by huntstoomuch; August 1st, 2011 at 07:35 AM.
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Old August 1st, 2011, 07:38 AM   #14
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yes i would think so most contractors wont want to mess with it because of the risk and the ones that will you will pay for. .........but on the other hand there are alot of broke people out there so you may find someone lol good luck
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Old August 1st, 2011, 06:30 PM   #15
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Buddy just got quote for ~2000 sq ft house, has a old michigan 1/2 basement, gonna redo all the walls and dig down and dig out the part that is just crawlspace so it will be a full basement. Live in it while work is going on. Got an estimate for Everything for 30k. From a Concrete place.
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Old August 2nd, 2011, 10:31 AM   #16
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My grandfather dug an 8 foot deep basement under his house in the 50's, by himself, by hand, after working a 10 hour shift at Chrysler. Did it in one summer.







We're all pussies in comparison now.
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Old August 2nd, 2011, 11:29 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by huntstoomuch View Post
Has anyone here ever paid a contractor to excavate a crawl space? If so would you mind sharing the cost? Does anyone know of someone on the west side of the state that would be interested in providing a quote/doing the job?

The home in question is a foreclosure that I own which currently has an 18" crawlspace. I would like it excavated to a depth of 36" minimum and smoothed.

The house sits on a sandy loam and is about 1200 sq'. Actual area to be excavated is more like ~800 sq'. The excavated sand can be left in a convenient pile... I don't need it removed from the yard.

I'm not sure who to even call for the job... so far I've tried two different excavators and neither wanted anything to do with the job.

I guess I'm just curious what others have paid in the past as I haven't even a clue what a contractor may charge.

Any help would be appreciated...
Sorry I dont have any suggestions to offer up, I was just wondering how the Jeep is doing?
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Old August 2nd, 2011, 03:08 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlooMule View Post
My grandfather dug an 8 foot deep basement under his house in the 50's, by himself, by hand, after working a 10 hour shift at Chrysler. Did it in one summer.







We're all pussies in comparison now.
Your grandpa was lazy and slow compared to huntstoomuch's time estimation.
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Old August 2nd, 2011, 03:18 PM   #19
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Your grandpa was lazy and slow compared to huntstoomuch's time estimation.
Damn union worker!
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Old August 2nd, 2011, 03:24 PM   #20
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I have yet to remove that much from a crawl space however, I have removed 8" from a crawl space and poured concrete so that it could be use able storage.


we used a piece of 3" pvc with a T and a baffle in the top of the T. pressurize the end of the tee so that the air is rushing out of the crawl space and dump sand in the top. one shovel full disappears in about 2 seconds and removes all bark from trees within 3', PVC was run out a vent.

It took us one day to build contraption, remove sand, pour/finish and cut.

800sq ft area.

I dont know what it cost the homeowner but I got a $1000 bonus for that job along with my 2 coworkers. I assume he paid a pretty penny for a place to store his kayaks.
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