3 Reasons to Avoid Blasting Whenever Possible

19 October 2021
 Categories: Construction & Contractors, Blog


Excavation is an inevitable part of nearly any construction project. Whether you're constructing a commercial structure, building a house, or just adding onto your property, you'll usually need to move some Earth. Several potential options and techniques are available to perform this process efficiently, but many people assume blasting is the best option when clearing rock.

Unfortunately, blasting comes with many potential downsides. Trenching is a valuable alternative that's viable for pavement, hard rock, and heavily compacted soil. Keep reading to learn three reasons you may want to select this less destructive alternative for your next excavation project.

1. Lower Transportation Costs

Most projects involve at least some amount of backfilling. Backfilling is the process of using excavated material to fill the trench once you complete the work, something that's typically necessary when installing pipes or other belowground infrastructure. Even foundations require backfilling around their outer walls.

Blasting produces material that's typically not suitable for this job. As a result, you'll need to import material to fill in the area you excavate. If you don't have on-site storage, you'll also need to haul away the material you blasted out. Trenching generally allows you to use most or all of the old material, significantly simplifying the backfilling process.

2. More Control

It's no secret that blasting is a destructive process. While professionals know how to perform the job in a way that minimizes risk and maximizes control, there's no way to avoid blasting's inherently disruptive nature. The result of any blasting project is usually a trench with jagged or uneven walls and an excessive amount of excavation.

Trenching allows your contractors to dig out only as much as necessary. This neater, more controlled process reduces labor costs and limits damage to your property. Trenching is nearly always the better option if you're working near other structures or property you need to protect.

3. Less Soil Disruption

Nearly any project involving excavation will ultimately also require solid soil structure and compaction. Roadways, foundations, and most other construction jobs rely on soil to reliably carry a load without shifting or otherwise losing its ability to support weight predictably. Rock blasting disrupts the surrounding soil and may ruin its structure, leading to compaction issues in the future.

Trenching equipment avoids this problem altogether, leaving surrounding soil intact and creating trench walls that respond well to compaction. As a result, trenching can reduce the need for further site preparation while also minimizing the likelihood of soil failures in the future. This advantage can mean your construction project will last longer with less risk of severe issues.

To learn more about why blasting is not your ideal choice, contact local trenching services.