The foam panels are normally 16 inches high, but that means having steps in the footing that are
16 inches high. That would have required either really deep trenches or lots of forms, neither of
which we wanted to do, so we elected to put 8 inch steps in the footings and cut some of the
panels in half lengthwise. That is also a lot of work because of the heavy gauge metal webs in
the panels, but we only have to use the shorter ones in a few places and even then only every
other step. Here my wife is getting some help from our 10 year old son as she uses foam
adhesive to lay a run of the 8 inch panels.
Although we intend to terraform the hillside sufficiently to achieve positive water drainage
around the house, the entry way is a special concern of ours, it being uphill and recessed into the
wall on that side of the house. Just in case, we installed two four inch drain pipes under the
house that can carry away excess rain water if necessary. The two pipes have already been
buried and exit the downhill wall through ports we pre-formed in the foam wall. The portions
sticking up will be trimmed to ground level once we've completed the backfilling.
Also in the picture is the plate compactor we use to compact the soil as we backfill. It works
great, but is very noisy and doesn't like rocks very much. I suspect the rocks share the