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1256 posts

Uber Geek
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# 249395 8-May-2019 23:16
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Sort version:
How easy is it to locate services (water, gas, electricity, etc.) under concrete?


Long version:
I'm looking at my fibre install options. Apparently the duct the existing cooper cable is laid in has collapsed and is not useable.


I have a textured pebblecrete driveway leading up to the house that is quite steep but has a flat parking space at the top, next to the garage. For a while now I've been thinking of cutting (or having a professional cut for me) a narrow strip out of the driveway at the top of the slope to create a trench about five metres long to drop in some drainage (something like this) to stop water running down the steep driveway. Coincidentally, this cut would run almost exactly to where the existing ETP is, so I thought I could do the fibre install by running a ruggedised cable run along a wooden retaining wall on one side of the driveway, and it could then be run in the trench, under the drain, to the ETP, where it would enter the garage for routing through the house. Seems doable, and would mean not having to drill any new holes in the side of my house.


But about 30cm from the ETP is the stopcock for the water connection to the house. Almost directly above the ETP is the electricity meter. And about three metres away, but on the same wall, is the gas meter. So somewhere under this driveway, all in close proximity, are all the service connections to the house. I don't know where they run up or across the drive, or how deep they are. I don't want someone cutting my drainage trench and slicing through the electrical cable or gas main.


So would professional concrete cutters have equipment capable of detecting the location and depth of these service connections? 

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  # 2233401 8-May-2019 23:35
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Locating your current copper duct is extremely easy with the correct gear.

As for other services, that can be a bit trickier, but by no means impossible.

A good concrete cutter wont drop the saw much lower than the concrete itself - you can feel when it gets through the bottom. So the chances of hitting something are really quite low.

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Uber Geek
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  # 2233859 9-May-2019 17:02
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Thanks @chevrolux


The current copper connection is the only one where I don't really care about it's location. If I lay fibre in the bottom of the drainage trench the copper is obsolete, so no biggie if it got cut. I'd be annoyed if the water main was damaged, and very annoyed (not as much as the contractor) if the electricity or gas lines were sliced. 


I'll scope out a concrete cutter and make sure they're aware of the issues. If they just take the concrete layer off, I can do a bit of careful probing along the length of the trench before digging deep enough to sink the drainage channel.


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Uber Geek
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  # 2233860 9-May-2019 17:02
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DELETING - Not sure how that got posted twice.

'That VDSL Cat'
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  # 2233879 9-May-2019 17:14
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DELETING - Not sure how that got posted twice.



if you go edit post it gives you a delete button ;)

#include <std_disclaimer>


Any comments made are personal opinion and do not reflect directly on the position my current or past employers may have.

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Ultimate Geek
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  # 2233887 9-May-2019 17:40
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Just hope that the services are buried to the depth they are supposed to be at, we replaced a driveway due to earthquake damage and gas, water, and electrical runs were just sitting under the driveway, lucky gas line was not ruptured.




Complaints lodged to the appropriate authorities, too many cowboys out there!



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  # 2233974 9-May-2019 20:05
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With that drainage channel, bear in mind that it needs concrete poured either side and underneath to hold it in place, so your cut should be around 300mm wide to give you ~100mm on each side for concrete

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