Demolition is the process of safely breaking down buildings and other man-made structures. The demolition of a building is very time consuming and laborious as it involves a lot of risks and hard work.
Demolition of a smaller building like a house is a simpler process but tearing down a huge multistoried building requires a lot of engineering, science, experience, and training.
Steps to be remembered before demolition:
- Step 1- you need to hire a reputable demolition contractor. You need to make sure that the contractor is professional and is aware of the safety procedures related to demolition work.
- Step 2- you need to get the approval of the local council before starting any demolition work. You also need to submit your demolition plan and application form to the local council office.
- Step 3- before beginning any demolition work, you need to disconnect any gas, water or electricity supply from the property. This step is very important as it is connected to the safety of neighbors and workers.
- Step 4- you need to be extra cautious towards environmental hazards while demolition work. Demolition creates a lot of dust, noise, and vibration which can directly harm the environment. This must be monitored and minimized.
The process of demolition:
- Deconstruction: This process of demolition is expensive as well as time-consuming as it involves breaking and bringing down the property step by step by hand to retrieve the maximum amount of recyclable materials.
- Implosion: This process involves the use of explosives to demolish a building. This process is risky and accounts for less than 1 % of all demolition. It also creates a lot of dust, vibration and sound pollution. It is extremely harmful to the environment.
- High reach arm: This process is used in buildings where the height of these buildings are more than 66 feet. The process includes equipment like a base machine, or an excavator fitted with long demolition arms, with a crusher, shear or hammer attached to its arm. The building is broken from the top and then downwards.
- Wrecking ball: This process is the oldest and most common method of demolition. The wrecking ball weighs up to 13,500 pounds and is attached to a cable from a crane or other heavy equipment. This process of demolition requires highly trained workers as missing the target may lead to some serious accident or injury.
- Selective demolition: This process is gaining popularity because it enables the builder to reuse and recycle the retrieved products. The only con of the process is it is a time consuming and labor-intensive method.
Cost of demolition (rough estimates):
- The cost of demolition depends on the total area of the property, the method of demolition and the number of workers involved.
- The average cost of demolition is $75 per hour.
- For minor demolition, the cost can go down to $50 per hour. If the demolition involves a large property, costs can go up to $90 per hour.
- The average cost of demolition per square kilometer is $35/m2.
- The average cost of demolition per square foot is $3 to $11 per square foot.
Factors determining the cost of demolition:
- The first factor determining the cost of demolition is the size of the building. The larger the property, the higher is the cost of demolition.
- The presence of asbestos in a house or building increases the risk of demolition. The higher the risk, the greater will be the cost of demolition.
- A property that is built using concrete will be costlier to demolish than one that is built of wood or other materials as breaking down concrete buildings is much more labor and cost-intensive.
- If the foundation of a building needs to be demolished, it is much more expensive as breaking down the only wall is an easy task.
The above article gives an insight into the factors that must be considered before, during and after of demolition. Demolition is a hazardous task and if not done by following all safety measures, it can turn out to be life-threatening as well.