Demolition 101

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Most people are familiar with the spectacular destruction of buildings using explosives. However, the truth is that most demolition projects are performed step-by-step using cranes, loaders, wrecking balls, and hydraulic equipment. While explosives may be used from time to time, in most cases demolitions are performed with equipment designed to tear down buildings and structures.

The process itself starts with clearing the site of all removable objects (dismantlement), proper site clearance, and remediation of the environment. This means that anything which can be removed without causing the integrity of the building to be compromised is taken out. Once that occurs, the building is then taken down and the material removed from the property.

Types of Demolition

Interior: This is when the inside of the building has all materials removed, save for the structural elements, in preparation for remodeling or upgrading. What is left is the ceilings, walls, flooring, and some utility services that will be salvaged.

Industrial: This is the demolition of facilities that produce products, such as manufacturing, chemicals, oils, and similar goods. It usually involves proper remediation of hazardous substances which may have contaminated the area.

Explosive: Usually reserved for larger structures, this type requires specialized skills, knowledge, and experience. Extensive site planning, preparation, and clearance is performed so that the explosives used will bring down the structure quickly and efficiently.

Demolition vs. Deconstruction

These are two similar forms of taking apart existing structures, but there is one substantial difference: deconstruction is far more labor-intensive than demolition. In deconstruction, there is far more emphasis on preserving the materials from the structure for their resale, reuse, or recycling value. Deconstruction is often performed by hand, meaning less equipment is used and there is considerable sorting so that all valuable materials are preserved.

Valuable Material

Most demolitions projects result in 90% of valuable removed material being reused, salvaged, or recycled. Some of the material that is considered valuable enough for resale purposes includes:

  • Brick, porcelain, concrete, and other aggregate materials
  • Steel, iron, brass, bronze, iron, and other metals
  • Ceiling tiles, flooring, carpets, wiring, and conduits
  • Roofing, soils, wood, plasterboard, and more

Any materials deemed unusable will be properly disposed in a way that follows all laws, rules, and regulations of the industry.

At Brickley Environmental, we provide demolition services following all laws and regulations so that it is performed properly. Please call our friendly, courteous staff and we will explain our services, answer your questions, and provide the right demolition services for your needs.

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