Excavators are the giants of the construction site. They can dig through concrete, transfer building materials, lift objects into the air, and demolish entire structures. It is no wonder, then, that they are a staple for any construction project. When it comes to buying an excavator as an individual or for a business, there are several tips that can help make the process smoother when trying to choose the right machine for the job.
In general, the more knowledgeable the buyer, the better their chances are of finding a quality, user-friendly excavator. At the very outset, they should establish their own needs and expectations: this can help them in making many key decisions. Also important is knowledge of the excavator parts, their functions, available options, and product specifications. This way, they can interpret information about different models in a meaningful way, especially if considering a used model. Following these guidelines can help buyers to select an excavator that can get the job done properly.
Buyers should keep in mind the jobs that the machine is required for, so they can have a fixed idea of what they need and expect from an excavator before starting the search. First, what type of site do they typically work on? Is it a broad landscape, with plenty of space? Or do they normally work in narrow urban areas between buildings? Next, what kinds of jobs does the excavator need to be able to do? More specifically, how far does it need to reach, how deep should it dig, how high should it lift, and how much should it be able to carry? What functions does it need to perform?
Lastly, buyers need to consider factors such as how they will store and transport the excavator once it has been purchased. Clarifying these expectations can help buyers to make the right decisions during the buying process.
While a lot of buyers may be seasoned excavator users, others may not have experienced operating the equipment themselves. A familiarity with the parts of an excavator helps buyers understand the features of different models when comparing machines. Some of the basic structural elements which would be useful to understand before purchasing an excavator include:
Cab – Compartment on top of the machine where the operator sits. Can rotate 360 degrees independent of the undercarriage.
Engine – Diesel engine delivers power to the tracks and to the hydraulic systems responsible for moving the boom and attachments.
Undercarriage – Bottom part of an excavator. Steel or rubber tracks, propelled by sprockets and rollers, are the normal means for moving the vehicle, however, there are also versions on wheels.
Boom – Long arm that extends from the main chassis. Connects with a stick which holds an attachment via a joint known as the elbow.
Attachment – Performs the excavator’s functions. There are a number of different attachment types, most commonly, a bucket used for digging.
Decide on the Size and Type of Machine Before Shopping
Excavators come in a range of sizes and dimensions, so narrowing down your choices to a specific size range and excavator type will help to save time which searching for a machine.
There are a few different types of excavators for buyers can choose from. Perhaps the most common are crawler excavators, which feature steel or rubber tracks moved and guided by sprockets and rollers. These provide maximum stability on uneven surfaces. Slightly less common are wheeled excavators, which move on wheels instead of tracks. This gives them more mobility than crawler excavators, especially moving between jobs. Long-reach excavators feature an extra-long boom, allowing them to reach upper levels of buildings. They are often used for demolition, as they can pull structures down in a controlled manner.