DIY homeowners are an adventurous bunch. They turn to YouTube or books to figure out how to maintain their home at a fraction of the cost of hiring contractors. However, this is problematic in a variety of scenarios. One of them is the installation of underground conduit. While the idea of this installation seems relatively straightforward, every jurisdiction has their own guidelines and rules regarding underground conduit/casing. Therefore, homeowners—and even local municipalities—should consult a professional before undertaking such a project.
When you’re working with electrical lines, safety becomes a concern. And this is primarily why a DIY installer should go with an experienced installer. Without the knowledge and expertise of underground conduit installations, these projects can put the novice installer and even the entire community at risk.
The fact remains: not everyone understands the scope, precision, and time that goes into such an undertaking. As a result, those who need an underground conduit installation should always consider a highly trained professional. These companies have the equipment, manpower, and knowledge to complete the task without the risk of major complications. In addition, the transfer of liability from the DIYer to a licensed and bonded company can further reduce the risk of financial responsibility if a catastrophic event should occur.
Meeting Legal Requirements
Every municipality and jurisdiction has its own legal requirements and codes regarding underground conduit/casing installation. For those unfamiliar with the terminology or other building codes, this can provide a hurdle that can lead to sunken costs or legal trouble. Some examples might include:
- How to install conduit into the electrical meter of the home
- How deep to bury the conduit as required by law?
- The maximum angle/degree of bends in the conduit
- Types of PVC piping required by law
- How to glue together joints
- Where and how to install caution ribbon below the surface
- If drainage systems are necessary
These are just a few of the considerations our professional installers must make before and during the process. With the sheer amount of knowledge necessary to complete underground conduit installation, the process can seem overwhelming to novice people.
Civil Engineers Are the Preferred Choice
Once DIY homeowners or municipalities figure out that they’re not apt to handle such a massive job, the next decision is who to hire. While an electrician or electrical company may seem like an obvious choice, civil engineering firms are the preferred installer.
Why choose a civil engineering company over an electrician? Simply because most electricians’ expertise is on above-ground wiring and components. They may not have the expertise or equipment to handle underground conduit/casing installations. Conversely, civil engineering firms regularly handle underground installation of various utility lines. Therefore, homeowners and local governments should always consider a civil engineering company over an electrician. Positive results depend on it.
Between meeting local building codes and the potential for problems during underground conduit installations, hiring a reputable, experienced civil engineering firm is a sound decision. While the overall expenditure may be higher, knowing that your conduit installation is done correctly can make a world of difference. That’s peace of mind that’s worth the price.
EPS Inc. dba Express Plumbing specializes as a Bay Area civil engineering & underground construction contractor. For multiple decades we have served homeowners, business owners and municipalities by providing expertise that get the job done.