When you're ready to start your own construction business or are looking to expand the work you offer, you may need some earthmoving equipment. Not only do you often need to clear land before work begins, but you may also need to grade and level it, and even bring in lime, gravel, and other materials to treat the soil, as well as heavy equipment used for construction.
Before you simply buy a bulldozer and assume it's the only piece of equipment you need, note a few other pieces of earthmoving equipment that can be useful for various jobs. Remember, too, that you can usually rent these as needed rather than invest in their purchase and upkeep.
An excavator has a long crane arm with a bucket attachment and a cab that usually swivels to the left and right. While it's good for most digging jobs, it's also used for land clearing, as the long arm can reach deep underground and pull up tree roots and even plumbing pipes as needed. The bucket is also used for carrying and delivering heavy pieces of equipment to remote areas of the jobsite where a standard truck cannot reach. The long arm also allows for safely reaching into bodies of water, so it can be needed for river dredging.
2. Skid steer loader
This piece of equipment is very compact so it's good for smaller jobsites, although it may not have the long arm or be able to handle the heavy materials handling of an excavator. A skid steer loader is good for drilling, as its shorter arm allows it to use a drill to reach straight down into the soil. It's lighter weight is also good for not disturbing soil and to avoid sinking into soft or moist soil. For jobs on residential properties, it can be the better choice than a larger, heavier excavator.
3. Scraper and grader
If your work often means digging up or renovating sites that are already developed, you'll need a scraper and grader. This does exactly as the name implies; it can scrape up pavement, aggregates, asphalt, and other surface coverings with minimal disruption to the soil underneath. The grader can then quickly make that area level and even. The scraper may also have a bucket attachment that makes loading the old materials onto a truck quick and easy, and the grader can also be used to crush gravel and other materials you set down for a smoother area that is ready for construction.