How Long Does Excavation Take?

crawler excavation of construction job

The Start of Construction

The first thought that may come to mind when you hear the word “excavation’ may be a paleontologist on a dinosaur dig. But there is a more common type of excavation service that uses the same process of using special tools, sometimes explosives, to move earth, rock, or more to get under the earth’s surface. 
Excavation services are needed for other applications besides dinosaur exploration. It is needed for construction purposes, mining, and environmental restoration. Construction is the most commonly known reason for excavation services that is part of building foundations and roads and creating reservoirs, a step needed for preparing a site for construction.

What are the different types of excavation services?

An excavation service is more than just digging up dirt though. An excavation service contractor is responsible for overseeing the changes as a part of a careful and well-engineered design for creating a firm base of building projects.

What are the basics of an excavation service: 

The excavation service process starts with an analysis of the landscape and creating careful planning that includes:

  • Digging a foundation to precise dimension and placement
  • Grading the ground to create a level surface
  • Digging trenches for underground utilities
  • Leveling the site to meet specific elevation requirements
  • Compact the soil to create a stable building surface
  • Installing special soils

Are there other services an excavation service company provides? 


The excavation service contractor will make certain that the construction site has the infrastructure in place that is needed, including digging trenches for electrical lines, sewer lines, wells, and the support needed for a stable foundation. The service may include shaping the ground for the landscaping plans for the ideal project aesthetics.


The excavation service contractor is responsible for managing and scheduling a crew and the needed equipment to meet the specific demands of a project in order to meet the timeline. This often requires working with other contractors in order to accomplish tasks in an orderly manner for a smooth process of preparing the site. 


In most cases, the excavation service company is responsible for building roadbeds, temporary or permanent, for heavy equipment to be efficiently and safely delivered where needed on a job site. This includes concrete mixing trucks, cranes, and lifts and can include the construction of the following: 

  • Demolition
  • Dirt hauling in/off
  • Drainage
  • Driveways
  • Roads
  • Sidewalks


Mass excavation service is often required for large-scale projects using an advanced technique to prepare for the footprint and foundation for a structure, like a skyscraper. This requires a large crew and a heavy equipment fleet where precise measurements are followed.

What methods are used by an excavation service to ensure accuracy? 

Always go with an excavation service that has experience in the type of excavation you need. A contractor with experience will use the following steps to ensure a positive outcome: 

  • Planning Ahead

An experienced excavation service knows they are required to contact 811 between 48 hours and 5 days or longer before starting work. They will know that more than one phone call is needed to cover all the utilities, including communication cable lines, electrical, plumbing, and more. 

  • Site Marking

Where possible, an excavation service contractor will draw white-line boundaries of the project site before having other services done. This involves using flags, stakes, and/or white paint to pre-mark the dig or drill site for accurate communication with facility owners and service providers.

  • All Clear

An excavation service contractor will wait to receive the all-clear message on the project site before they begin construction. This includes having all the utilities in place and the areas marked with flags or spray paint and having documentation in hand. 

How long before an excavation service can start? 

There are many steps before construction can start of a structure, and the excavation service is vital for a solid foundation. There are several factors that can determine and influence the beginning of the excavation service, which takes between 3 days and 3 weeks.  The factors include the depth of the required excavation service, obstructions like large boulders and trees, or the excavation service equipment getting stuck in clay or mud.

excavation construction

Down Under It All 

Excavation equipment is an expensive investment, and while any construction crew could do their own excavation by renting the heaving equipment, there are benefits to using an experienced excavation service. An experienced, professional excavation service will know the proper methods that ensure a reduced erosion and siltation potential once the job is complete. 

An experienced excavation service crew is aware of the environment and soil and will know what steps to take that benefit both as well as the structure itself, making sure all is safe during construction and afterward. 

When you need an excavation service in Philadelphia, PA, count on the team at Armour Seal Exteriors, Roofing, Masonry and Contracting. We’re here for you at any time at 267-622-7158. Call us now!