High-quality construction takes the proper tools, meaning the proper heavy equipment. What are the machines that are considered heavy equipment, though? According to the Cambridge Dictionary, heavy equipment is defined as “large pieces of machinery or vehicles, especially those used in the building industry.” That seems a bit vague, doesn’t it?
At West Coast Training, we know a thing or two about heavy equipment. We have both heavy equipment training and certificate programs available to anyone looking to build their skill set and experience in the construction business. We’re very knowledgeable when it comes to heavy equipment, and we want to share that knowledge with you.
Here’s a heavy equipment list to get you started.
A backhoe loader is a machine that’s used on multipurpose work. It’s similar to a tractor that’s fitted with a bucket, but the loader is on the front and the hoe is found on the back of the machine. This type of equipment is literally earthmoving.
The backhoe loader is very widely utilized. It’s useful for digging below the machine or at earth level. Additionally, having the loader on the front makes loading, unloading, and lifting much easier and safer, as the driver can easily see what’s going on.
As you can tell from the name of this machine, its primary duty is excavation. However, these machines can also be used for demolition, heavy lifting, tree cutting, and more. You’ve likely already seen excavators, as they’re very common and very important when it comes to construction.
This piece of heavy equipment is a simple design containing a long arm and a cabinet. To make things even easier, the entire cabin arrangement of the machine can be rotated up to 360 degrees. Furthermore, you can choose either a wheeled or tracked excavator.
There are also dragline excavators, which are used when digging needs to happen at a much greater depth. These machines vary from regular excavators because they have a longer boom; that is, the arm attached to the vehicle is longer. The bucket used for digging is also suspended from the top of this boom using a cable. If excavation needs to happen underwater, dragline excavators are the machines that will be used.
This is a machine you’ll likely recognize. Bulldozers are used to get rid of the topsoil layer of an area up to a certain depth. In the front, the machine has a sharp-edged, wide metal plate, which helps it easily move the soil. The operator has the ability to lower and raise this plate to enable the bulldozer to remove material at various depths.
It’s important to have a machine that’s able to load materials onto trucks and other dumpers, and that’s where loaders come in. These machines have a very large bucket located in the front with a moving arm that’s shorter. Loaders can be used to move raw materials, demolition waste, and excavated soil, just to name a few.
There are two different types of loaders that you’ll find on your heavy equipment list—tracked and wheeled loaders. Wheeled loaders are more common and can also be used in mining projects. Tracked loaders are found on sites where wheeled vehicles are unable to travel.
These machines are used especially in creating or working on roadways. They’re most commonly used to level soil surfaces. Additionally, graders can also be used to remove dirt or snow from roads and to remove any unnecessary soil from the top layer of the ground.
Graders have a blade that’s horizontal and found in-between both their front and rear wheels. While the machine is working, this blade is lowered into the ground.
This name should also ring a bell for you, as they’re extremely common. One thing you may not know, though, is that dump trucks don’t just carry heaps of materials solely to the dump yard. They can transport materials from one site to another as well. If a construction site is a long one, an off-road dump truck will be used instead of just a regular dump truck.
The tires on a dump truck are very large, and the tires found on an off-road dump truck are even larger. This allows the truck to be able to work and drive on any sort of terrain, in any sort of conditions.
The above heavy equipment list is a look at some of the heavy machinery most commonly used in construction projects. Of course, there are many more beneficial machines out there, each with its own purpose. For instance, you’ll find transit mixers, pavers, and concrete pumps, which are used when concrete is necessary on a construction site.
The type of heavy equipment needed for a job is going to depend highly on the type of construction and the site people are working on. It might be a different type of heavy equipment each time. This is an important thing to remember, as knowing the ins and outs of operating multiple machines on this heavy equipment list will improve your versatility on any construction site. You’ll want to train on a variety of heavy equipment machines.