An excavator is an important piece of heavy equipment for many construction projects. Quite often an excavator is called a digger. You can use an excavator for all types of jobs, such as landscaping, material handling, mining projects, demolition, construction, and river dredging. Every construction site should have an excavator because this machine does more than its share of work. An excavator is used for digging. It can dig a hole, trench, or foundation quickly, meaning this can speed up the task on your construction site. Because this piece of equipment is expensive, it’s a good idea to hire one at excavator rentals.
You can use an excavator to lift heavy amounts of soil on your job site. These popular earthmoving vehicles have an arm, rotating cab, bucket, and movable tracks. These parts offer superior mobility and power, allowing the equipment to do a variety of functions. You can find different types of excavators, such as small machines that can perform drilling and digging functions and large excavators that come with different tools designed to handle heavy-duty projects. Therefore, before you decide to rent an excavator, you need to consider its speed, size, and working conditions on the job site like the soil types and amount of space. This article discusses what you should know about excavators.
Types of excavators
An excavator features a bucket, dipper, and boom. These pieces attach to a cab that is on a rotating house, and many houses tend to rotate 360 degrees. An excavator is usually available with either wheels or tracks, though this depends on the nature of the project and manufacturer.
You can find excavators in a wide range of sizes and some of them can weigh at least 180,000 lbs. This equipment has several other attachments that work like the digging bucket to help the machine perform a variety of tasks. By switching the bucket with a drill, auger, rake, or ripper, you can use the excavator for many different jobs.
The right way to choose an excavator for your project is to figure out what you want the equipment to do. Therefore, you should identify the right size of potential excavator, the attachment required, and the length of times you need it. It’s a good idea to rent the right size equipment rather than trying to fit one piece for a variety of jobs.
The variety of excavator rental sizes and attachments you can find on the market makes it necessary in excavation work of all sizes. The different sizes allow these excavators to be utilized in large construction projects as well as small backyard renovation projects. For example, wheeled excavators are quite common in urban areas because their wheels don’t affect pavements and finished roads compared to the traditional metal track.
Remember that you can decide to choose the cable excavator or hydraulic excavator. The difference between these excavators is that a cable excavator utilizes a series of steel cables and wires to move the main parts. On the other hand, a hydraulic excavator works by letting the driver utilize levers to manage the hydraulic fluid movements which pushes and moves the cylinders that control the bucket and boom of an excavator.
One of the popular types of excavators you can decide to rent is called a crawler excavator. Unlike a large excavator that runs on wheels, a crawler excavator runs on two large endless tracks and is great for heavy-duty construction jobs and mining. Also called a compact excavator, this excavator uses a hydraulic mechanism to lift heavy soil and debris.
It has a chain wheel system that allows it to scale hills and slide down with less risk. Because of this, a crawler excavator is ideal for landscaping uneven terrain and grading hilly areas. It may be slower than other types of excavators, but it offers greater flexibility, balance, and stability.
A wheeled excavator is another type of excavator. Remember that a wheeled excavator is similar in appearance and size to a crawler excavator, but it runs on wheels rather than tracks. Using tracks instead of wheels makes this excavator faster and easier to maneuver on asphalt, concrete, and other flat surfaces while providing the same power capabilities.
Since wheels provide less stability on an uneven surface than tracks, a wheeled excavator is commonly utilized for urban and roadwork projects. But operators can decide to add an outrigger to enhance stability when transitioning between concrete or asphalt and an uneven surface.
There is also a dragline excavator which is a larger excavator that functions with a different process. This machine uses a hoist rope system designed to attach to a bucket through a hoist coupler. You should note that the other part of the bucket connects to a dragline that goes from the bucket to a cab. And, the hoist rope can raise and lower the bucket and the dragline tends to pull this bucket toward the driver.
Because of their weight, a dragline is usually assembled on-site. The system of this kind of excavator is often utilized in large-scale civil engineering projects, such as canal dreading.
Then there is a suction excavator which is also called a vacuum excavator. A suction excavator has a suction pipe that can provide at least 400 horsepower. This excavator can first release a water jet so that the ground can loosen.
The pipe which has sharp teeth at its edge can then create a vacuum that takes away debris and soil at least 200 miles per hour. And, the excavation is suitable for delicate underground applications because it can lower the chance of damage.
There is a skid steer excavator that you can hire. Unlike a standard excavator, a skid steer excavator has buckets and booms that face away from the operator. This design allows the attachments to extend over the cab rather than around it. This makes this excavator ideal for more narrow places and maneuvering tricky turns. They are usually utilized for site cleaning, digging pools, debris removal, and residential work, where there is more limited space and objects are far apart.
A long reach excavator can also be rented for construction projects. As the name suggests, it has a lengthier boom and arm parts. This design allows you to have a good operation in hard-to-reach areas. The extendable arm of the excavator can reach at least 100 feet horizontally. This excavator is suitable for demolition projects, such as crumbling and breaking down a wall over a body of water. You can affix different attachments to the arm to do extra jobs like crushing, shearing, and cutting.
Lastly, there is a mini excavator. Recently, most contractors are utilizing mini excavators, which are smaller and lighter versions of the standard excavator. A mini excavator can reduce ground damage and tends to fit through narrow and crowded sites, such as indoor spaces and parking lots. Also called a compact excavator, a mini excavator usually incorporates zero tail-swing or reduced tail-swing to help it to maneuver tight turns and avoid hitting any obstacles.
Key attachment for an excavator
You can find different attachments for an excavator on the market. It’s a good idea to rent a specialized attachment so that your equipment can work smoother and function more efficiently for specific projects. You should note that there are at least ten most popular types of attachment for both standard excavators and mini excavators, so you can decide to rent the one that fits your job.
The traditional excavator comes with a bucket designed to dig towards the equipment and cab. You can fit the digging bucket with a thumb to make it easier to move and lift materials. You can attach the other types of buckets to an excavator.
A V bucket and rock bucket are two bucket types that you can attach to an excavator. You should note that rock buckets look similar to digging buckets, though they have a narrow V-shaped edge and longer sharper teeth for cutting. These reinforced structural parts of rock buckets allow them to break through hard rocks while still retaining their structural integrity. And, the V bucket usually makes it easier to dig trenches and is suitable for laying utility pipes and cables.
You can fit an excavator with an auger attachment to help you to dig holes. An auger is powered by a hydraulic circuit and they can reach objects and drill large and deep holes. Remember that augers can have different sizes and specifications for a wide range of digging conditions and terrains. They usually range between 4 and 50 inches in length and may dig at least 32 feet.
Another attachment is called a breaker that is similar to a jackhammer, but is much larger. It can offer at least 1,000 lbs of impact energy. This attachment can break into harder surfaces, such as concrete and stone.
There is also a clamp that allows an excavator operator to pick up big materials that are oversized and a bucket cannot pick up. These objects include concrete and tree stumps. You can use the attachment with a bucker or as pieces in a grapple. The good thing is that a clamp can easily be attached and detached from an excavator.
You can also attach your excavator with a coupler. A coupler allows you to switch between attachments and tools quickly without a crew. They are versatile when it comes to moving between processes and tasks on a job site.
It’s worth mentioning that you can also fit your excavator with other attachments. This includes a hammer, compactors, rippers, and many other various types of tools. The good news is that you can find some rental companies that offer shredders and other different types of tools. All these attachments can help to make your excavator multipurpose equipment.
The benefits of hiring an excavator
Hiring an excavator instead of purchasing one can be a cost-effective decision. You should remember that an excavator is a large piece of equipment that is very expensive. Worse still, it can be hard to figure out the right type of excavator ideal for your project. Hence, buying an excavator tends to be risky and may leave you with a significant costly mistake.
Hiring an excavator for construction projects means that you don’t have to worry about the maintenance costs. When you decide to purchase an excavator, you should know that the cost may not end after making the purchase. This is because you also need to invest some cash in maintaining and servicing the equipment regularly to make sure that it functions at its nest and doesn’t break down while working. In case your excavator breaks down, your project can be delayed and you may need to spend additional cash for repairs. This means that you have to spend your money which you could have used to invest in other important areas of your business.
On the other hand, when you choose to rent an excavator, you don’t have to worry about these maintenance costs. This is because the maintenance and servicing of the machine can be done by the company that owns it. You just have to utilize the equipment for a specific period and return it when you don’t need it any longer.
When you rent plant machinery, such as an excavator, the rental company can deliver it to your job-site and come to take it after use. A reputable rental company can have a secure and safe place to keep the machine, so you don’t have to worry about the safety of the machine. But if you buy an excavator, then you are responsible for storing it in a safe place and you may have to deal with the consequences once it’s stolen.
It’s worth mentioning that buying an excavator involves a lengthy process because of the slow delivery and stock shortages. This is unlike hiring an excavator since you can access the machine right away. Besides, it is usually easier to find the model, make, and attachment that you need. This means that there you may not experience any delays with the construction project and there are good chances that you can stick to tight deadlines.