Demolition Techniques

Demolition Techniques

Also considered to be a method of destruction, demolition techniques are known as the different ways that the demolition industry can blow up, destroy or take apart a structure. These demolition techniques will remove the old building so that new construction can take place. Obviously, there are several factors that will play the role in deciding which technique to use on a particular project including but not limited to the project size, the available budget as well as any other factors surrounding the job site. Here is a look at four different types of demolition techniques.

Non-Explosive/Mechanical Demolition

This type of demolition is normally used with machinery such as cranes, bulldozers and a wrecking ball. As a general rule, wrecking balls, which will be connected to a crane by a cable, are used on high-rise buildings so that the building has fewer stories for implosion – the use of explosives. The only real downside to the wrecking ball is that you lack absolute full control because you can’t be positive as to where exactly the debris will fall or in what manner the structure will collapse. Another way the building can be brought down is by undermining, which is the removal of supporting elements of the structure so that the building falls quickly but safely and generally in the direction that you desire.

Explosive/Implosive Demolition

This is the technique that comes to mind when you think of the demolition of a building and it is the most theatrical. However, it is not as easy as it appears to be on TV. The explosives are set around the structure in a controlled, pre-determined manner that when detonated will collapse inward and is considered an implosion. The person in charge of hitting the fire button will need to be qualified to do so as explosives can be dangerous if they are not handled properly and/or handled by someone without the necessary training. While it takes only seconds for this demolition method to actually take place, it makes up for time by taking an adequate amount of time to set up and then clean up.

Green Demolition/Deconstruction

Something that is growing within the demolition industry is green demolition or deconstruction. It is by far the most environmentally friendly of the demolition techniques that are available. It is a carefully planned method of deconstruction that does take time. The building will be tore down manually and as much of the building’s material will be salvaged so that it can be reused somewhere else. Not only does this recycle materials but it minimizes the amount of material that must be taken to the landfill.

Selective Demolition

Last but not least is selective demotion, which is usually used when a building is being renovated, rebuilt or an addition is being included. This is a difficult method of demolition and thus requires:


  • Careful planning.
  • Architectural research.
  • High level of accuracy.
  • A highly qualified, talent professional that can have a section demolished without hurting the remainder of the structure.