Demolition methods

What is demolition?

Demolition is a precise process and may be done either manually or mechanically using large hydraulic equipment: elevating work platforms, excavators bulldozers or cranes. Large structures like tower blocks require High-Rise demolition equipment know as a High-Reach machines.

Rotational hydraulic shears and rock-beakers attached to specialist excavators are also used to cut or break through wood, cut steel and crush concrete.

Both demolition and deconstruction involve the pulling down of a building or structure and are the reverse of the construction process. Whilst the two processes are similar in effect deconstruction preserves various elements of the structure, such as wood, and bricks, for reuse for another building or structure.

The process reduces the structure to a rubble which is either treated as waste or, in some cases, used as hard core for other construction projects.

Controlled demolition

If you have a large building that requires demolishing, you cannot rely solely on manual demolition to get the project completed. There is only so much that a team of demolition contractors with sledgehammers can do when confronted with a high-rise building. And the old crane and ball method takes a lot of time and effort.

Health and Safety is also a huge importance. How do you demolish a huge building without placing everybody nearby at possible significant risk?

We are a leading controlled demolition contractor offering controlled demolition services throughout the United Kingdom. Leveraging decades of experience in the sector, our team will help you to demolish buildings safely and leave the site ready for whatever new projects that you have in mind.

What is deconstruction demolition?

Deconstruction is a relatively new approach that seeks to minimise the quantity of waste that is sent to landfill sites. The process involves the careful removal of materials and segregating them either for reuse or recycling.

A well-designed deconstruction project can result in less than 20% of the structure and its contents being transported to landfill fees and cost saving in refused materials can make it a cost-effective process. There are two forms of demolition:

  1. Piecemeal- where the demolition is conducted using hand and mechanical tools such as pneumatic drills, cranes and demolition balls, hydraulic pusher arms or heavy duty grabs; and 
  2. Deliberate controlled collapse – where explosives are used to demolish the structure. This technique should only be used by trained, specialist competent persons. Pre-weakening of the structure, by the removal of several load-bearing elements and their replacement with temporary props, normally precedes the deliberate collapse. This is the most economic form of demolition but it is the most hazardous and everyone must be at a safe significant distance at the time of the collapse.

Manual demolition

Manual demolition works well to preserve other portions of the structure that a property owner wants to preserve or nearby buildings. Heavy demolition equipment may also bring too much impact on the area of the demolition, such as vibration, shock, and noise. Manual dismantling is very helpful to minimise the effects of these disruptions while making sure that a structure is taken down efficiently.

To carry out manual demolition works, various tools and equipment can be used such as:

  1. Jackhammers
  2. Pneumatic hammers
  3. Wire and winch systems
  4. Hydraulic wedges
  5. Drills
  6. A wire saw cutting machine
  7. Sledgehammers
  8. Oxy-acetylene torch
  9. Mini-loaders and mini-excavators

Whether it is mechanical or manual demolition, there should always be proper measures in place to prevent sudden movement of the remaining structures before the completion of a demolition project.

People demolish structures for various reasons. It could be because of the following reasons:

  1. An existing damage that needs to be repaired
  2. An additional space needed for the business or residence
  3. An improvement or renovation of an old structure.

A common denominator for most demolition works is to ensure the safety of the dwellers.

Depending on the type of structure and the needed job required, the dismantling of a structure uses various methods. The procedure of demolition also varies with the size of the building and the availability of equipment.

Among the methods, manual demolition is found to be most applicable for most sites, especially for areas located in the urban zone. The safety of the demolition process would greatly depend on the type of procedure used. This is the main reason why all demolition jobs require careful planning and execution.

Manual demolition

None-explosive demolition

You do not need explosives for every demolition job. Most people assume that for a demolition to be a demolition there is a need for a kaboom. It does not have to be that way. As a leading demolition contractor in the United Kingdom we are experts of non-explosive concrete demolition.

Non-explosive concrete demolition is a process that relies on chemical agents to safety remove concrete and rock during the demolition process.

This is a viable alternative to explosives especially in situations where there is a high risk of injury posed by explosives or where vibrations caused by explosives could damage nearby structures.

Explosive demolition images
commercial demolition

Commercial Demolition

Demolishing commercial buildings holistically and partially is exactly what we specialise in. Regardless of whether you want to remove single walls or an entire floor, at the end of the process, we ensure that everything.

Remote Demolition

Total Demolition is one of the leading confined work demolition contractors in the United Kingdom clearly ahead of all other companies, we offer a service that is unmatched in the area of demolition in confined areas,Total Demolition over an 9 year period 


Crushing & Screening

Total Demolition offer a range of crushing and screening services throughout the United Kingdom. Our fleet of mobile crushers and screening units allow us to tackle jobs of all shapes and sizes, and this can be complemented by our residential or commercial.


High-Rise Demolition

We use high-reach convertible excavators that allow us to remove pieces from the building while preventing damages to the other structures. Even when there are two or more buildings standing next to each other, we can take down the building down with accuracy 


Asbestos Removal

Total demolition perform safe and comprehensive asbestos removal work nationwide and have worked on some of the largest asbestos removal projects ever undertaken in the United Kingdom.  We have 


Residential Demolition

Total Demolition offers a variety of residential demolition services. We have executed numerous residential demolition projects  throughout the UK. We can perform demolition and site restoration 


Chimney Demolition

For almost 40 years, Total Demolition have been growing and adapting to meet our market’s needs. We’ve worked on a vast range of chimney demolition operations for private companies

Facade Retention

As a modern and professional demolition contractors, we have developed our capabilities to provide Facade Retention and Temporary Propping services within any Demolition Contract


Bridge Demolition

At Total Demolition, we know that bridge demolition is a complex project that requires a lot of planning and precision. That’s why we offer our expertise to handle every aspect from inception to completion.


Civil Engineering

Total Demolition are a leading civil construction and civil engineering contractors with over 45 years’ expertise in delivering  high-quality, innovative and cost-effective civil engineering projects across a wide variety of sectors. As leading civil engineering contractors, our operations 


Site Clearance

Site clearing is an important part of preparing land for new constructions, subdivisions, or other earthworks. It involves removing a range of things from the site, including vegetation, trees, soil, debris, and existing structures that are no longer required


Emergency Demolition

Total Demolition are able to provide rapid deployment of specialised plant and equipment ranging from excavators and earth-moving equipment, to crane and rigging, purpose built containerised spill contaminant modules, generators and lighting towers.


Industrial Demolition

Each industrial demolition project is unique based on its scope and requirements.  A specific site plan is necessary as well as the use of an OSHA safety plan.  Below you can find a summary of the necessary steps.


Hazardous Materials

Total Demolition provides hazardous and contaminated waste identification, treatment and removal services. Our highly skilled team will always find a safe and efficient management solution to remove your unwanted legacy.


Dismantling Contractors

The dismantling of redundant plant (including process equipment, columns, heat exchangers, pumps, pipe work, chimneys, stacks and structures within live environments) is a particular speciality. Industrial


Groundwork Contractors

Some of our excavation equipment include backhoes, excavators, bobcats and tip trucks to handle all types domestic, and commercial and industrial excavation projects. For all your excavation needs contact our 

0333 1223 370

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