Boring involves the drilling of holes into the ground for many different purposes. In the construction industry, boring is a technique used to explore the underground surface and to determine if it is capable of holding up a building. Boring is also the first activity that is conducted on site to establish a building's foundation.

There are several techniques that are used during boring. This article will explore 4 of the most common and effective boring methods.

Auger boring

Auger boring is a useful method for testing the underground soil to determine its ability to hold up a building's foundation. For areas that have clay soils or sandy soils, auger boring is very useful at testing the properties of the soil at various depths.

The process begins with holding the auger in a vertical position and slowly rotating it to penetrate the subsoil layer. The auger has sharp ends and a sharp tip that are able to displace the materials in the ground and penetrate the soil. At various depths, the soil can be tested for its ability to provide support to a building.

Wash boring

Wash boring involves driving a steel pipe (also called a casing pipe) into the ground. A wash pipe that is filled with water is then inserted into the steel casing. A jet of water under high pressure is flushed through the pipe in order to displace the soil surface and create a slurry mixture that is easier to displace.

The slurry can also be raised to the surface in order to test for its soil composition. Rough and cohesive soil surfaces are great candidates for wash boring.

Rotary boring

Subsoil surfaces that consist of rocks and hard pans are normally penetrated using rotary boring. The process involves the use of a steel tube that has a cutting bit on its surface. The cutting bit is normally composed of diamond or steel shot to provide a hard, durable tip that can penetrate tough subsoil surfaces.

The diamond bit penetrates the ground and collects samples of the subsoil into the steel tube. The soil can thus be tested to determine the composition of the underground layer and whether the ground is suitable for establishing a building's foundation.

Percussion boring

Another strategy that is used in place of rotary boring is percussion boring, where repeated blows from a chisel or bit are used to penetrate the subsoil. Percussion boring also combines the use of water jets in order to produce a slurry that makes the boring easier.