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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The barn where I board has dirt floors (I think you'd call it a pole barn). Due to the elevation of the ground, the floor of Teddy's stall tends to get wet every time there is a strong rain event. This last time, I had just put a bunch of fresh shavings in. They are true shavings, dry and fluffy. They're still dry on top, but the floor of the stall, and some of the lower levels of shavings, are wet. Is it OK to leave it like this? It will dry out eventually, right? I only use their stalls for feeding and tacking, so they are in there maybe 3-5 hours per week.
 

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Id be worried about shavings going moldy in warmer weather.

You could mix stall dry in with them to speed up the drying out process.

Can you raise the floor by bringing in some crushed stone and then putting rubber mats on top?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Id be worried about shavings going moldy in warmer weather.

You could mix stall dry in with them to speed up the drying out process.

Can you raise the floor by bringing in some crushed stone and then putting rubber mats on top?
If it were my barn, or if they spent significant time in there, I'd invest in something to keep it dry. But as it is, I'm honestly not really motivated. I thought about maybe trying to dig a trench to change the drainage pattern. I like the idea of roadfill too, if I really needed to fix it.
 

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If the hooves are ridiculously dry, the moisture would be a fantastic balance...
If hooves though are prone to easily acquiring fungus infections, then no, not good and a no-go for me.

Yes, stalls will dry, over time...
But each time the wet/dry cycle comes, the ground will not ever dry as much/well, but become more saturated...
Be very cautious of what you save and the scents it can give off your horse will be inhaling let alone possibly skin infections if they lay down to rest on shavings now soaked from saturated ick...

So, if me...
Invest in a load of the cheapest fill material you can find..
A few yards delivered will raise a 12x12 stall several inches...then put stall mats on top.
Tractor Supply by me has the best prices when on sale and use the coupons from joining their "Neighbors Club" {free to join} for more savings.
Stall mats can go with you when you move and will give you many options at your new barn, stalls, wash stalls, grooming areas and aisle ways..
They are also great to put under a car that may have a oil leak so not to ruin concrete or asphalt.
Mats are a investment not a loss left behind.

I look at investing my sweat equity by raising the stall floor then adding a solid membrane {mat} so my horses feet are not standing in wet, soiled and possibly bacteria infused for hours at a time as proactive. Money well spent keeping hooves healthy so my horse stays sound with less chance of a hoof infection...
Speak to your barn owner about her supplying the material for your horse{s} stall if you would do the labor of placing the material inside...she just might do the financial end for you.
Most material does pack over time too so once you pulled "your" mats out, her base would be in better condition for the next boarder or her own horses.
:runninghorse2:...
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The barn owner is super cheap and I can't imagine she'd be willing to pay for anything. I guess I will look into doing it myself, though. I'll price out some roadfill. Let's see, 10ft x 10ft x 6 inches. Ugh, I can't do math. Maybe that's 1-2 cubic yards? Even just cheapo fill dirt would work, I guess.
 

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I would suggest checking your local Craigslist ...
Farm & Garden section, then type in the search bar "Fill Dirt"...
You would need a little less than 2 cubic yards per stall.
You have only 1 or several stalls needing done?.
Often a minimum amount needs delivered for prices quoted and within certain mileage from origination so do ask...

I only remember you are in Texas, but not location specific...
So I tried the "Houston" area as a search and had several offerings/listings show...
What you need to know and ask is how many yards per truck load for some of the prices listed as dump trucks come in many different dump body sizes...
The material is cheap, trucking is what can cost....

Lawn and Garden Shops also often have material and trucking available...
This project need not be expensive, even if you have more delivered than needed...
Does your Barn owner have a bucket loader tractor to help move the dirt for you if delivered and dumped not at your barn/stall...dirt is very heavy to move by wheelbarrow.
We have learned we never have enough dirt when needed...your barn owner may feel the same way and be willing to share the cost, even cheap as they are...sharing cost is a enticing appeal.
:runninghorse2:...
 

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A big NO to fill dirt, cheap or otherwise as you will only accomplish compounding the problem:)

Do you have a pickup truck? If a gravel place is fairly close to where you board, get half to 3/4 ton of #2 base rock for starters.

Yes to raising a minimum of six inches. My NW stall is up 14”, while the NE stall is only up 8”. After all that, THEN you could trench around the barn on the side(s) where water tends to pool:)

I would top that with driveway gravel, then put mats on top of that:)

Keep your receipts for your mats, so when you do move, there is no question they belong to you:)

Now that I said all this, it’s probably too muddy to back the truck up to the stall, so would a wheel barrow work or one of those 4-wheel carts TSC sells and carry it to the stall that way?

It would sure be labor intensive but once it’s done, you would have a good place for Teddy to be in when he has to be in a stall:)

Here’s a link to help you figure how much you would likely need.

https://www.gravelshop.com/shop/calculate-cubic-yard-feet-ton.asp?groupid=32&productid=572

If the BO is ok with you spending the money, I would gravel the stall for the health of my horse:)
 
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I would suggest a short term solution, and long term.

Short term would just add enough fill (or grade it with a shovel) to put the floor on a slope so it naturally drains. Then put stall mats over it. I bought the cheaper and thinner (trailer) mats from TSC on sale, because they are much easier to move around.

Long term adding crusher rock then mats, but would still keep it sloped for drainage.

Determining slope is a bit trickier, as you have to check the surrounding stalls and or aisleway for current height/slope. Best would be sloped down in back of stall, and a hole or two at the base to drain any water.

Some posters may strongly object to sloping the stalls, but sloping is the easiest and cheapest to do.

My stalls have a significant slope to them, because my barn is built on a hillside. The horses are fine. The stalls are 10x12 or 12x12 and horse can stand anyway that is comfortable to them.

Lacy stands at an angle facing the back corner (farthest from Chivas :cool: ) and Chivas always stands looking out the back door. Sassy generally lays down or stands sideways facing Chivas. Or she is picking up pieces of hay from the front corner.

The point being, the short time your horses are in the stalls, a slope doesn't matter.

IMO, putting a bunch of money into renovating the stall (6" deep will cost a LOT) is pointless.
 

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Do you have a pickup truck? If a gravel place is fairly close to where you board, get half to 3/4 ton of #2 base rock for starters.

walkin...how big are the pieces of #2 base rock??


I live by a limestone quarry and here #2 is a very large road base material that is unsuitable for what she wants to do...
Limestone by me is graded in size and when I took a educational tour of the site I was surprised at how large their #2 graded was., baseball to softball sized chunks it was by me.
By me, crushed limestone is a mix of blend but smaller pieces she could easily handle with a shovel and get leveled in a stall...then mat and horse compact.


Hadn't thought about the dirt absorbing moisture again but raising inches above and matting would still present with the same issue?
Huh... no good then.:frown_color:


Craigslist still works though for finding what you do want to use and affordable with trucking costs in those estimate price given.

:runninghorse2:...
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Living in Central Texas, we have a lot of crushed granite that you can buy. It's nice and soft and crunchy. Would that work? Size of pieces is anywhere between large grains of sand and maybe nickel sized.
 

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Dig the stall out to where it is hard soil not mud. Backfill with gravel that packs. Crushed granite is great if the pieces are fine enough. You don't want it to be lumpy and you don't want it to shift around. In California this is called Base Rock because it is used as road base underneath paved roads or by itself on unpaved roads. Use a long straight 2x4 (not all of them are straight) to true it as level as you can. Get a hand tamper and tamp it down as much as you can stand to. Now put stall mats on top, and you have a dry stall surface to put your bedding on.

This is a lot of labor but less labor than a horse with diseased lungs and/or feet.

We took all sixteen of our stall mats we bought for the run-in we built at the boarding place, all the way across the country with us, when we moved. So happy we did, too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
The point of putting a stall mat on top is to create a moisture barrier so that moisture doesn't wick up the base? If so, if I used gravel or even the crushed granite, wouldn't that not wick anyways? I mean, since it's a non-absorbent material with air gaps?
 

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walkin...how big are the pieces of #2 base rock??
...
It’s big enough the would be better off if someone with a single axle dump could deliver it but they could manage a small amount in a truck.


Living in Central Texas, we have a lot of crushed granite that you can buy. It's nice and soft and crunchy. Would that work? Size of pieces is anywhere between large grains of sand and maybe nickel sized.
^^^^Thats great for the top layer. If you want to do this right, you need something like road base to not only help with drainage but to keep the smaller gravel in place longer.

Using just crush is ok if the barn stays dry to begin with but even then, over time, it deteriorates and needs replaced.

Mats - I do not like solid mats. I much prefer 3/4” thick restaurant grid mats. Even When the holes fill with shavings, the urine still drains pretty good. And you never have to pick them up to clean all out that smelly rotten urine mold, and whatever else might grow under them:).

Grid mats aren’t bulletproof in that regard but they are a whole big bunch less smelly than solid mats and you don’t have urine squishing up between the seams like can happen with solid mats.


I can’t remember the cost per grid mats but I think they may be cheaper than solid stall mats- maybe, lol. My stalls are 12’ x 14’ and it cost me ~$300 per stall to redo them with restaurant grid mats.

Or you can buy the thinner wash rack grid mats from TSC for less money.. I used those the first time and they lasted me 13 years in two stalls, 15 years in the run-in stall which really takes a beating.

The fourth stall still has the original TSC mats, as it is now used as a shavings stall, which the bags sit on pallets on top of the old mats:)

Mats are to keep the horse comfortable (directly off the gravel) and also to keep the manure from getting mixed into the stones. Allowing the manure to have contact with the stones means you can’t help but scoop some stones up every time the stall is cleaned. The stones or crush will disappear a lot faster without mats:)
 
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How often does this stall actually get/remain wet? Every time it rains, or only when you get a big storm? A couple of weeks in the spring or is it constant? If it's not a year-round issue, I'd put mats down to prevent the worst of the mud from getting mixed into the bedding, and make do since the horse isn't in it 24/7. Working on ground/drainage issues with property you don't own could end up being a lot more trouble than it's worth.
 

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The point of putting a stall mat on top is to create a moisture barrier so that moisture doesn't wick up the base? If so, if I used gravel or even the crushed granite, wouldn't that not wick anyways? I mean, since it's a non-absorbent material with air gaps?
No, it wouldn't. The crusher rock needs to be compacted. It is more porous than dirt, but that does not stop water from passing through, thus wetting the shavings. The mat is intended as a barrier between the base (whatever it is made from) and the shavings.


There is crusher rock in two of my stalls, the ones in the addition, basically because the ground needed building up. The construction men I hired could not even get a whole load for one stall in the bed of the pickup truck because of the weight. Amazingly expensive!


I personally, would never attempt to load crusher rock in a stall, way too heavy. Plus needs to be tamped down. Since I used to work in Civil Engineering, designing is not the difficulty and I always just hire labor to save expenses. By labor, I mean manpower. I never hire a general contractor, as I can easily do that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 · (Edited)
Could you all look at this link? Page 2 is a list of what they deliver and prices. Which of those things would you get, and how much?

austinlandscapesupplies.com/docs/ALS_Retail_Price_List.pdf

Also @SilverMaple that's a good question. It only gets wet when there is a storm that dumps a lot of rain in a short time. This has happened maybe half a dozen times since we've been there (one year).
 

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Acadian is onto something...3 - 5 hours a week, not per day of standing on this... :|

If you are set on doing something though...
This is a small amount of product you are referring to having delivered.

Per the ad policy about delivery...
3 yard minimum or you pay surcharges...


Road Base................................ per yard $23
Crushed Limestone 3/8" x 1/2" per yard $29


Depending upon surcharge it might be cheaper to get a extra yard and just allow the B/O to use/spread say on a wash area, grooming area or even parking area so ground packed "dents" and water accumulation areas are no longer.
I would want to see in person the road base versus the crushed limestone for ease of you handling, spreading and "compacting" in the stall effectively.
You are handling and need to be practical about what you can manage without hurting yourself, exhausting yourself and the material handling equipment you are going to be using.

Personally, crushed limestone is where I would go.
It will raise the floor height, be easy to handle, level with a asphalt {hard/rigid} rake and then add mats over the top, then do your shavings.
We actually used this size for our feed room floor as it was easy to handle, packed down, does not shift and I can walk on it without twisting a ankle carrying 70 pound hay bales when stacking my hay.
We do not have mats in the feed room.
However...
My stalls are just dirt floors, that we have replenished with more "plain" dirt that does compact some after the horses walk on them for a bit...no mats.
Bagged shavings placed over the top, dirt and shavings do not mix after settling occurs. Yes, my stall can get damp during wet season {daily 3" or more torrential rains in 20 minutes} but not terribly.
When we get 18" or more of flooding storm {hurricane} you can bet we flood a bit while the ground soaks in what came down in a few hours takes about 12 hours to disappear completely from any lower lying spots.
We bank the outside of the barn with dirt so least seepage under the walls occurs...we don't trench as no point when so much standing water exists...
If you are suffering from flooding from roof drainage, then you need gutters/leaders to channel water away honestly, not trenches. And your barn owner needs her land graded to protect her investment of barns on the property.
Land grading is not a expense you as a boarder should be paying...nor should the expense of raising a stall floor even if you rough board, it is still her property she should be maintaining jmo.

How soon are you planning on moving to your new property???
Based on that time-frame would also be factored into how much I would invest financially & in sweat equity to walk away from versus whose benefits and true need..
:runninghorse2:...
 
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