Excavator Types and Their Applications on the Construction Site

An excavator is essential on your job site if you need to raise large volumes of earth. Excavators are earthmoving machines with buckets, arms, rotating cabs, and movable tracks. These components give this heavy equipment more digging strength and mobility, allowing it to do everything from digging trenches and breaking holes to hauling rubbish and excavating mines.

What are the functions of excavatorsExcavators are used for a wide range of contractor and industrial applications, including mining, road construction, building construction, and demolition.

Excavators come in a variety of sizes and shapes; smaller machines are used for digging and drilling, while larger excavators have varied equipment for heavy-duty operations. When renting an excavator, think about its size and speed, as well as the working conditions, such as the amount of space available and the varieties of soil.

Crawlers, dragline excavators, suction excavatorsskid steer excavators, and long-reach excavators are the most common excavators. We’ll go over the many types of excavators and the jobs that each one is best suited for.

Crawler Excavators

Crawlers, unlike other huge excavators that operate on wheels, operate on two massive, endless tracks. They are commonly employed in mining and heavy-duty construction. These excavators, also known as compact excavators, employ hydraulic power mechanisms to lift large waste and soil.

Their chain wheel system makes it easier for them to slide down and mount hills, making them ideal for grading hilly areas and gardening uneven terrain. Crawlers are slower than other excavators, but they offer more overall balance, flexibility, and stability.

Dragline Excavators

The dragline excavator is a larger excavator that uses a different method of excavation. A hoist rope system connects to a bucket via a hoist coupler on the apparatus. The bucket’s other side is attached to a dragline that connects the bucket to the cab.

The bucket is raised and lowered by the hoist rope, while the bucket is pulled toward the driver by the dragline.

Draglines are frequently assembled on-site due to their weight. This excavator’s innovative technique is widely utilized in large-scale civil engineering projects like canal dredging.

Suction Excavators

These excavators, sometimes known as vacuum excavators, have a suction pipe capable of sucking up to 400 horsepower of air. To loosen the earth, the excavator uses a water jet.

The pipe’s sharp teeth at the edge produce a vacuum that pulls soil and debris away at speeds of up to 200 miles per hour. A suction excavator is perfect for sensitive subsurface applications because it reduces the risk of damage by more than half.

Skid Steer Excavators
Skid steers feature booms and buckets that face away from the driver, unlike normal excavators. Because the attachments are oriented this way, they may reach over the cab rather than around it, making them useful in tighter spaces and tighter turns.
When space is restricted and objects are spread out, they are frequently employed for digging pools, site cleaning, domestic chores, and debris disposal.
Long Reach Excavators
A long-reach excavator has a longer arm and boom section, as the name implies. The design makes it easier to operate in difficult-to-reach areas. The excavator’s extendable arm has a horizontal reach of nearly 100 feet.
These excavators are ideally suited for demolition operations such as structural crumpling and wall demolition, as well as applications that require working over water. The arm can be fitted with various attachments to accomplish additional tasks such as shearing, crushing, and cutting.

Excavator Attachments and Parts

Excavators are designed in such a way that they can be used for a variety of tasks. Digging and holding functions are provided by hydraulic cylinders, booms, arms, and attachments, while the driver controls the excavator from a house-like cab. The mobility required to lift and remove debris from the work site is provided by a rotating platform and wheels.

Hydraulic attachments are used by excavators for a variety of functions. Other popular attachments include an auger, breakergrapple, auger, lantern, and quick coupler, in addition to a bucket.


On excavators, buckets are the most common attachment. The teeth-like edges of these steel extensions can be used for digging and scooping. Buckets come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Ditching buckets, which are used to grade stones, and trenching buckets, which are used to dig trenches, are the most prevalent.


Boring into the ground is possible with the use of an auger. These helical attachments, which are powered by hydraulic circuits, can reach over obstacles and drill deep holes. Augers are available in a variety of specs and sizes to suit a variety of digging circumstances and terrains; they range in length from 4 to 50 inches and can dig up to 32 feet.


Are comparable to jackhammers, but they are much larger. These attachments, which can deliver up to 1000 pounds of impact energy, are used to break through stronger surfaces like stone and concrete.


Excavator operators can use clamps to take up huge objects like tree trunks and concrete that are too big for a bucket. The attachments can be utilized in a grapple or with buckets. Excavators’ clamps are simple to attach and disengage.


Couplers make it possible to swap between tools and attachments rapidly and without the need for a crew. This is useful when switching between different jobs and procedures on a construction site.

Difference Between a Digger and an Excavator

Backhoes, sometimes known as diggers, are frequently seen on construction sites, however, they are frequently confused with excavatorsBackhoes and excavators are different in size, weight, and functioning, although having similar digging and lifting capabilities.

Excavators are massive machines that can weigh up to 200,000 pounds. They can rotate a full 360 degrees because of their bucket and boom design.

backhoe, on the other hand, is usually much smaller and resembles a tractor more in appearance. A backhoe can only rotate 200 degrees side to side due to the design. The buckets on the front and back of the machine may extract materials, load waste, and move rubbish toward the vehicle. Backhoe rentals are ideal for light to medium-duty operations with a variety of uses.

When Should a Mini Excavator Be Used?

More contractors have been adopting a mini excavator in recent years, a smaller and lighter pint-sized counterpart of a normal excavator capable of avoiding ground damage and fitting into crowded, narrow places such as parking lots and indoor spaces. Mini excavators, also known as compact excavators, have a decreased tail-swing or zero tail-swing to facilitate tighter turns and minimize contact with obstacles.

While excavators come in a variety of shapes and sizes, their basic functions are the same. They’re a must-have on any construction site because of their lifting and digging capabilities. Because of their high cost, the majority of businesses find that renting them is the most cost-effective option.

Source: https://www.bigrentz.com/blog/types-of-excavators