Patio Excavation: How Long Does it Take (Cost & Time Need)

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Patio & Yard


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Earthwork and digging are part of most masonry projects. Similarly, when it comes to building a patio, excavation is a significant part of its construction.

You will need to spend considerable time excavating for the patio installation. So, before you begin, it is vital to understand how long does it take to dig out a patio.

Patios are a beautiful addition to our home. It can instantly bring a cozy and sophisticated touch to our lawn. That is why proper understanding and knowledge of laying out a patio is vital for homeowners.

It is necessary for you, especially if you are a beginner who wants to construct your patio. In this article, we dive deeper into patio excavation. So, let’s dive right in!

How Long Does Patio Excavation Take?

Patios come in all shapes and sizes. That means there is no fixed period for how long its excavation may take.

Usually, depending on the size and requirements of your patio, the excavation period will vary. For example, small patios may take a couple of hours to excavate.

For bigger ones, it may take multiple days.

At the same time, the resources and methods you are using for the patio excavation will also set up the duration of the excavation.

If you are digging out the patio manually, the time to finish the job will naturally take longer.

On the other hand, the best way to excavate for speed and time is by using professional-grade construction tools like soil excavators or diggers to reduce time substantially.

From the sources of professional construction companies, the time to excavate the patio for 2800 square feet using a mini track loader (Bobcat MT-55) takes about 10 hours.

So, it is safe to say that patio excavation for small to medium-sized patios will take about 8 to 10 hours. This applies when using professional excavation tools rather than manual digging.

Similarly, its excavation time will be longer when planning for a large patio. To cut that time out, you can increase the labor on the field.

This will allow the work that needs two days to be wrapped up in 1 day. The excavation time will strictly depend on your patio size, the tools and resources used in the process, and the number of laborers working on the project.

The excavated patio has two steps. Firstly, you excavate the area where the patio will be set up. Secondly, dispose of the loose soil that you have dug up.

In many cases, adjusting the soil work and ensuring the right amount of moisture can be challenging. This can increase the time required for excavating your patio. 

Keeping all these aspects in mind, it is safe to say that patio excavation may take any time between 8 hours and a couple of days. 

Costs For Excavating Your Patio

Home Advisor says the typical range of costs for excavating the patio is from $1,471 – $5,783.

This means the price for excavation will vary depending on the type of work required, size, and other relevant factors.

In smaller patios, the excavation work will be less than that of a large patio. Naturally, this will have an impact on the price levels.

However, the average cost of excavating your land may fall between $50 and $200 per cubic yard. So, you can apply these numbers to your excavation area to get an estimation.

Excavation work can be paid for by a contract or according to daily wages. If you are paying daily, the payment will most likely be between $40 and $150 an hour.

Additionally, it is also important to remember that the task of excavation does not end with simply digging out your patio.

You will also need to dispose of the dug-out soil. Additional charges may be incurred for soil disposal. This will be more when excavation requires removing trees, bushes, and weeds surrounding it.

The costs for excavation also depend on the machinery you will be using. Generally, homeowners use tools like excavators, backhoe loaders, or trackers with a backhoe attachment.

These tools’ purchase or rental prices will also impact your costs for excavation. Ultimately, the combined price of all these elements will determine your excavation cost.

Consult with your local construction firms if you want more specific pricing according to your land size. Many times, they will provide you with free estimates with price breakdowns.

At the same time, you will also get insight into what additional work is necessary for your patio excavation.  

What Is the Cost of Excavation for Building an Enclosed Patio?

The cost of building an enclosed patio involves various factors such as the patio size, materials used, labor charges, and any additional features like heating or cooling systems. On average, the cost can range from $15,000 to $30,000 or more, depending on these factors. To get an accurate estimate, it is advisable to consult professionals and get multiple quotes tailored to your specific needs.

Factors That Affect Patio Excavation

The time and cost of your patio excavation often depend on several factors. These factors are crucial for you to determine.

This is because many aspects of your patio excavation will directly or indirectly depend on these elements. So, for homeowners, the factors that affect patio excavation are given as follows.

Equipment To Use

The equipment you will use is one of the most critical factors determining your overall patio excavation.

This means the right equipment will make the excavation task significantly easier for you. It will cut down on time required for digging out the soil.

Similarly, you will be able to avoid mishaps and mistakes from happening.

Professional-grade equipment may cost you more than using basic digging tools. That is, you can use a shovel or spade for the work.

But it will, in turn, increase the excavation period. So, resources and equipment play a big role in your excavation period and its cost.

Accessibility And Size Of the Patio

Another important property to keep in mind is the accessibility factor and the size of your patio.

By accessibility, we mean how efficient it is to conduct the excavation work on your land. The land may be unsuitable for creating a patio, may need extra soil work, or moving equipment and tools can be difficult. 

At the same time, the size of the patio will also have a big impact. These elements will determine how long you need to work for excavation.

Similarly, the excavation cost will also vary based on these elements.

Season And Weather

If you are wondering how long does it take to dig out a patio, paying heed to the current weather may help you out with that.

The season or weather during your excavation work will also impact the excavation work.

Especially during the rainy season or snowy winter, the cost may be higher. Similarly, the time necessary for completing the work will also change.

The weather often makes it necessary to take some extra steps and use some special tools for excavation. This will increase your excavation costs.

So, make sure you pay attention to the season and weather when starting the patio excavation work.

Clearing And Dirt Removal

A large part of patio excavation is clearing the land. This includes removing dirt, additional settings to the land, taking down installations, and so on.

At the same time, you will also need to remove dirt and weeds from the excavation site. These activities will largely impact your excavation duration and its costs.

Clearing and dirt removal may require you to pay additional charges. If you are contracting workers or a construction firm, settle these costs. Otherwise, you might end up needing to pay more than the estimates.

How Does the Cost and Time of Patio Enclosure Compare to Patio Excavation?

When considering the cost of glass patio enclosure versus patio excavation, it’s important to weigh the upfront expenses as well as long-term benefits. While the initial investment for a patio enclosure may be higher, the added functionality and extended usage may offer more value over time compared to excavation costs.

Final Thoughts on Digging Out a Patio Space

Patio excavation is fundamental to creating a solid foundation for a beautiful patio.

So, all homeowners must learn more about patio excavation. By knowing how long does it take to dig out a patio, create the perfect patio for your lawn.