Soil Heave – Protecting the Slab

Protecting slab Stage 1

There has been a lot of talk in the Melbourne papers recently about ‘Slab Heave’ when Building on Clay so I thought I would explain how to minimise the risk during construction.

A key issue when building on clay is to avoid any extra moisture getting into the clay under the slab. causing the clay [read more...]

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Window Abbreviations

When you are looking at builders plans it can be hard to understand what all the abbreviations mean!

Here are some common window Abbreviations /Acronyms:

AL – Aluminium (also Alum) AW – Awning Window CG – Clear Glass CLR.OPG – Clear Opening CR – Curtain Rod DG – Double Glazing DH – Double [read more...]

Builders ‘Security’ Fence

site  fence

These days all the builders provide, at our cost, a 1.8m high ‘Security Fence’ around the site.

When you ask them “Why is it there? “. . . They say “Its for Occupational Health and Safety and/or to prevent theft. ”

If those are the reasons why do less than 1% have a padlock?

[read more...]

Placing Fill

vibrating plate compactor

Of so you want to place some fill. . . .perhaps behind a retaining wall to level a garden . . . So what do you need to understand?

Here are some things to consider.

Final Volume – Loose Volume

Most people underestimate the volume of material they need because they measure the volume they [read more...]

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Fixing Stage Inspections

stage 4 fixing

This is the time when all plasterboard lining (or internal cladding) architraves, skirtings, doors, built in shelves, baths, basins, troughs, sinks, cabinets and cupboards of a home are fitted and fixed in position.

The waterproofing of all wet areas will also have been completed.

The house will still require painting and things like cabinet [read more...]

Avoiding Splitting Responsibility

I often come across people who want to exclude certain items of the work from a house building contract to save money.

They may want to do the work themselves, use their own tradie (relative or friend) or use a different supplier to install things before or during the build.

Liability for Problems

The main [read more...]

Protect Your Block From Dumping

Dumping on Block

A regular problem with vacant blocks is they are used as a convenient dumping ground for other builders.

It’s much cheaper to dump on a nearby site than haul the material to a tip and pay tip fees.

If you are are really unlucky the material may be contaminated (for example asbestos waste). . [read more...]

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Retaining Walls – Besser Blocks

besser block 1

If you want a rendered surface on your retaining wall one of the best ways of achieving this is by using ‘Besser Blocks’.

These are hollow concrete blocks which are designed to incorporate steel reinforcement within the block.

A few issues when building these walls are:

Don’t skimp on the foundation. Even a 600mm [read more...]