Ground preparation

Once you have calculated the shape of your Biomeiler and the area you need to build it you can prepare the ground. For this example we will build a Biomeiler with a diameter of 6.0 metres (radius of 3 m) with 3 layers of coil, height 2.8m and an energy output of around 6.7 kWh. - The calculations can be found here - Size your Biomeiler.

Output in kW Diameter in m Height in m Base Area in m² Base Area Ground Cover Square in m² No of Layers - # Volume for delivery in m³ Weight for delivery in metric tons (t)
4.22 6.0 2.8 28.00 49.00 3 64 19.0
  1. Build-a-biomeiler-prepare-the-ground-red.jpgYou will need an area of 7 x 7 m, 49 m² for the preparation - 6m diameter plus 1m for the edge. The edge will be reduced later to around 0.5m. The biomeiler will cover an area of 28m². You may order the underlay just square and use the cut-offs freely. The membrane may be order cut to size - round in this case - radius 3.5m / diameter 7.0m.
  2. Level out the area and mark the radius of of the biomeiler (6m) and for the edge (plus 1m). Make sure it can take the weight of at least 22t plus a full watering up adding another 4 tons at least. With a fair safety margin the ground should take 30tons over 28m² = 1.1 tons / m² = 1,100 kg / m². You need to consider this especially if you have any substructures, cellars, pipes, etc. under the location of the biomeiler-to-be and/ or if your ground is soft.
    Soft grounds are not a problem if you are happy to compress them. Make sure this would be even across the area - otherwise you will get your private mini-tower of Pisa in you garden.
  3. Build-a-biomeiler-sunk-base-red.jpgRoll out the underlay for the membrane to protect it against sharp stones, etc. We recommend that you roll out the underlay and the membrane to the radius you want plus one meter to build an efficient collection edge around the Biomeiler.
  4. The drain water collection edge can be build in several ways and here are just a few options:
    1. When levelling you could dig out some 250 - 500 mm and sink the Biomeiler a little bit into the ground reducing overall height.
    2. Build-a-biomeiler-raised-edge-base-red.jpgYou can level the ground an use the excess earth to build a little rim around your future biomeiler with a radius of - in this case - around 3.25m.
    3. You can use a 100m flexible drain pipe and lay a rim around the 3.25m radius, lay the underlay and membrane out and fold under the drain pipe.
    4. More ideas .... - let us know, add them to the forum.
  5. You might want to add a second layer of underlay on top of the membrane to protect it against the wood chips and the work carried out on top of it.
  6. Build-a-biomeiler-water-butt-red.jpgWhen levelling the ground you could allow for a slight fall to the centre or one of the corners to sink a water collecting butt here. We prefer a butt on the edge. Here you can collect the drain water in the early days of watering up the biomeiler and recycle it with a small garden / submerged pump back over the biomeiler. You could automate the process by using a sprinkler system.
  7. You should also have the pipes to your heat exchanger / central heating system in place. You could bury the pipes or run them over ground. We recommend to use prepared, highly insulated "district or area heating pipes". You could leave them outside the biomeiler, prepare the connections there and later isolate them well or you could make all connections inside the biomeiler and cover them with wood chips. The external connections will allow you later to more easily take the biomeiler apart when the wood chips have to be replaced with a fresh load. and in case there is a connection problem you have easy access to the joints. The internal connections may look better.
  8. Now you should be ready to add the wood chips - constructing your biomeiler.
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