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Basement walls

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The July 1995(Volume 36/Number 2) edition of "Concrete Technology Today"
provides some sound advice regarding backfilling of  basement
wallswalls(designed as a simple span). 1. Backfill the wall after the first
floor framing is installed. If this is not practical, then require temporary
bracing. 2. Keep heavy equipment at least 2.5 meters(metrication!) away from
the wall. When compacting the backfill, place in thin layers and lightly tamp
each layer. 3. If hand-guided mechanical compactors are used, don't compact
right next to the wall because this may cause high enough pressures to crack
the wall. One suggested method of avoiding excessive compaction pressures is
to compactors to stay 0.3 to 0.5 meters( more metrication!) away from the
wall. 4. Excessive siol pressures can also be caused by allowing water to
saturate the soil near the foundation. Remove standing water before
backfilling and don't backfill with heavy clays or soils contimated with tree
roots or other organic material.

Charlie Canitz, PE
Bel Air, MD