How to Level the Ground for Pole Barn Building

Property owners looking for a large storage area will find a pole barn to offer an economical solution that is customizable to their needs. Its pole construction provides for a sturdy structure covered by sheet metal or wood siding to provide protection from the elements. Leveling the building location provides a safe working environment and a uniform base to pour a concrete floor.


It is critical that you prepare the building site before leveling to remove all obstructions and items that could affect the base quality. This includes removing all debris, large rocks and trees as well as any buried objects such as old underground tanks. If you remove trees, make sure you remove the roots and backfill the space to create a solid base layer. Clear an area wide enough to allow workers and equipment to maneuver around the building site.

Video of the Day

Control Elevation

Set a designated elevation to use as a guide to level the area. Place a length of pipe, rebar or wooden stake securely into the ground. Mark the height you want your floor with highly visible ribbon, paint or marker. It is essential that you do not remove the marker until the ground leveling is complete. Use this height as a standard to base all other ground levels.

Elevation Marking

Workers have two options to ensure that the ground is level throughout the area of the floor. String leveling requires perimeter stakes with a string attached to the stakes from the height control stake. A string level placed on the string ensures that the string is level, and workers then base the floor level from the strings. A laser transom utilizes a transom stick and rotating laser that adjusts to the standard ground level. You'd place this in areas to determine if the ground needs to be lower or higher.

Moving the Dirt

You can level the ground for a pole barn by hand or with the use of heavy equipment, depending on the size of the barn and amount of dirt you need to remove. Equipment such as a dozer, front-end loader or skid steer can grade the ground flat and easily move around large amounts of soil. Once the ground is mostly flat or graded, you can further level the ground with flat-point shovels and landscape rakes. These hand tools are ideal for ensuring the floor is within the depth and level requirements for a poured floor.