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Jennifer14 04-26-2014 10:37 PM

Timing breakdown for slab-on-grade foundation?
What's the rough timing breakdown, from excavation to the day you can start framing the house walls, to build a slab-on-grade foundation for a simple master bedroom+bathroom addition? Assume an experienced crew of (5?) + plumber and dry summer weather in N. CA.

I've cobbled this together from online sources but know it's waaaay off:
Excavation: 1-2 days
Footings: 2 days
Ground plumbing: 2 days + inspection
Pour gravel bed in foundation, lay vapor barrier, mesh: no idea
Pour foundation: 1 day
Cure concrete: 7 days
Backfill: 1 day

Total: 16+ days???

Many thanks.

inspectorD 04-27-2014 06:50 AM

Hi Jeniffer,
Well, as always there are more questions, but thats a good thing. :D

First, what kind of soil are you digging in? Rock,sand dirt or ledge? The easier the soil, the faster the dig, Sand dirt, or some rock, about a day for the dig, then another day for backfill, if there is a hole.Unknow about ledge, as you will need to blast.
Second, you mention footings?, But you have a slab on grade concrete pad going don't need footings. So if you need to pour just a slab, it will be one day. And for cure time, you can cut that down to about 2-3 days with additives and faster curing concrete. besides, if this is a single story, there wont be much weight.
If it is a footings scenario, you will need 2 pours, and need to infill the footing.
A day for the plumbers at the most, but they need to actually show up. They are the most unreliable due to plumbing go to the back burner, cause you paid less money.:rofl:.
A day for the gravel and vapor barrier is a little much, and they pour mesh right in the concrete, unless you require steel mesh due to earthquakes. So keep a day for that.
I guess about 7 days would be the quickest, depending on the money you spend.... ;-) Good luck.

CallMeVilla 04-27-2014 09:57 AM

2 Attachment(s)
California has earthquake requirements not found elsewhere. Hold-downs need to be placed during the pour. And, yes, a footing makes sense, particularly if you ever intend to add a 2nd story.

Is the electrical underground or overhead? If under, you will have to bring the lines into the house, through the foundation too. A basic primer:

Do you anticipate a gas line for a BBQ? Better get that in the plans for the plumbers so they can stub it out for adding the final connections later.

Do you anticipate water issues (yes, there is a drought but ...)? If so, now is the time to anticipate French drain systems, which can impact your excavation and backfill.

Here is a good drawing for a slab on grade with footer (12"deep).

Jennifer14 04-27-2014 01:41 PM

Thanks InspectorD & CallMeVilla. Both helpful.
To answer the questions: we're digging in dirt, electrical is above ground, not anticipating water issues.
So the footings will need a separate pour? The attached pics of the footings look like it's all just one pour?

nealtw 04-27-2014 09:57 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Up here we call Villa's photo is a pan slab and our slab on grade is more like this with a footing down to frost level.
We use the pan slab for real poor soil conditions

Jennifer14 04-28-2014 01:43 PM

Is this going to be a photo face-off? ;) I love photos, thank you. all the conflicting info online is overwhelming so these pics point me in the right direction. I'm guessing my slab will look more like CallMeVilla's since I'm in earthquake territory.

So the footings mean there will have to be 2 pours? Making this a 9-day minimum project?

nealtw 04-28-2014 02:08 PM

What ever you have is what you will like do again, With Villa' picture you would pore the floor with the footing. With mine you could do a mono pore where the footing and wall are pored as one and then the floor is pored later. One does get done a whole lot faster than the other.
You will be able to tell what you have if you dig down beside the foundation. You might find a perimeter drain and just below that you will find either the concrete just stops with gravel below or you will find concrete sticking out and the wall is sitting on that.

nealtw 04-28-2014 02:14 PM

Your 16 days might be generous, depending on the crew you have and the different parts of the job can be organized. A lot can be screwed up waiting for inspections. Some areas put contractors ahead of homeowners :(

Jennifer14 04-28-2014 03:11 PM

Thank you! So it sounds like either yours or Villa's pic will work, but I'll have to figure out what I already have and best to go with that. Makes a lot of sense. Most likely hiring a contractor but want to educate myself as best I can.

nealtw 04-28-2014 03:59 PM

Usually a house can be ready to start framing within 16 to 20 days.

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