Got dirt? For many homeowners, contractors and landscapers, fill dirt is essential. The right type of dirt can do wonders for a number of projects, solving problems and offering improved work conditions.
In order to enjoy all the benefits associated with using fill dirt, though, you have to know how to choose and use it. You can’t just pick up any dirt and expect it to get the job done right.
This post will walk you through the process of selecting the right fill dirt, how to get the most use from it and where to go to find the highest quality materials at the lowest prices.
Fill Dirt Described
First, let’s take a closer look at what fill dirt actually is. Fill dirt consists of the soil that is located beneath the nutrient-rich top layer of earth.
Since this type of dirt doesn’t contain any organic matter, it can’t be used for growing plants, but that makes it perfect for use in a number of other landscaping and construction applications.
This is because there is no possibility of organic matter decomposing and leaving voids or pockets of space in the dirt that could lead to settling and potential damage to structures and features constructed on top of the soil.
Fill dirt will generally include rocks and sand, but can be screened to remove larger particles.
Types of Fill Dirt
In order to get the most out of fill dirt, it’s important that you’re able to differentiate between the different varieties. The three most common types of fill dirt are:
- Clean Fill Dirt – The name “clean” fill dirt indicates that the dirt is completely free of contaminants including corrosives, combustibles or reactive materials, as well as free of organic matter. The dirt should also be pure in the sense that there should be no rubble, metal, glass, wood or other unwanted debris and refuse present. This type of dirt is used for landscaping and construction purposes.
- Certified Fill Dirt – Certified fill dirt takes things to the next level. While any seller can claim that they’re offering “clean” fill dirt, this may not be the case. Instead of just taking the vendor’s word for it, it’s smart to look for fill dirt that has been certified as clean and safe. This is the only way to guarantee that your dirt is right for your specific project, is safe for use, and will continue to meet your needs into the future.
- Septic Fill Dirt – Septic fill is manufactured specifically for use around septic tanks. The material doesn’t retain moisture, nor does it tend to settle or shift over time. Septic fill may also be used to level areas to be paved.
Uses for Fill Dirt
There are numerous ways that fill dirt can be used throughout your property. Some of the most popular and practical uses for fill dirt include:
- Building Up Landscapes – Property owners sometimes feel that their landscape would benefit from a little extra shape or elevation. Fill dirt can be used in these cases to construct hills, terraces, elevated gardens and flower beds, etc. The dirt is poured over the desired area to the correct height, and sod is laid on top of the soil and grown. For best results, a layer of topsoil should be applied between the fill dirt and vegetation.
- Filling In Holes and Low Spots – Landscapes with dips, holes and low-laying spots can be a pain to deal with. When it rains, these are the areas where water runs, leading to flooding and erosion. In addition to this, it’s not easy to mow over these spots, garden in these areas or otherwise maintain these patches of land. The simplest solution is to make use of fill dirt in order to close these holes and make them level with the surrounding landscape. Again, grass will need to be grown on top of these areas or sod will need to be laid, and a layer of topsoil will be required to ensure that the grass continues to thrive and look healthy for the long run.
- Septic Systems – Septic systems absolutely rely on high quality fill dirt for functionality. This type of dirt is used to fill in the areas around the septic tank. The dirt must not contain organic matter or other materials that could retain moisture, settle, or create other problems. Properly screened fill dirt is ideal for this type of application.
- Stabilizing Project Foundations – Preparing a project area is essential to ensuring that the base or foundation is sure and reliable. Fill dirt is a great choice for establishing a stable foundation for driveways, buildings, roads, parking lots and even airport runways.
Fill Dirt Pricing
Even though fill dirt is extremely important, it’s still important to take the time to ensure that you’re getting the best value for your dollar spent. This is easy to do when you understand the factors which influence fill dirt pricing, such as:
- Origin – We urge customers to find out as much as they can about where their fill dirt originated. Was it specifically harvested for use in landscaping and construction applications, or was it excavated during another construction project? Depending on why, where or how it was generated, you could end up paying more or less for the materials.
- Screening Processes – Some fill dirt is screened, while other fill dirt is not. Even though the fill dirt won’t contain organic matter, it could include large clumps of dirt or debris that you don’t want present in the soil. Having the dirt screened will get rid of these problems, but the extra time, labor and processing involved will increase your costs.
- Volume Required – Obviously the amount of fill dirt that your project demands will play a big role in how much you’ll need to invest in materials. You’ll need to carefully measure the length and width of your coverage area, and determine the necessary depth of the dirt. Entering these three numbers into an online materials calculator will reveal how many cubic tons or cubic yards of fill dirt you must buy.
- Supplier – It’s important to choose the right fill dirt supplier for your project. We advise customers to avoid buying from big box retailers which offer overpriced materials. At the same time, we suggest that you think twice before buying cheap dirt from an online vendor. The low cost could mean that the material is compromised or not of the quality that you demand. The smartest option is to find a local manufacturer and supplier that produces high quality fill dirt at wholesale prices.
Where to Buy Fill Dirt in NJ
Braen Stone is the #1 manufacturer and supplier of fill dirt throughout NJ and its neighboring regions. We offer clean, certified and septic fill to our customers for competitive, wholesale prices.
Our team is familiar with the different types of fill dirt and can advise you on which is best suited for your project needs. We’re happy to help you calculate how much fill dirt to purchase and to provide you with any other information you may need for success.
Our fill dirt can be picked up or bulk delivered to locations throughout NJ, NY, PA and CT.