Making a wise investment in the right equipment for a construction project is crucial for the best results. If you have been pondering over Skid steer vs backhoe, the solution lies in your requirements. It would help if you considered different variables like the state of the construct at Your Construction Site-
The global backhoe loader market is poised to increase by $1.59 billion between 2021 and 2025. Another report suggests the global skid steer market is expected to be valued at $2.6 billion by 2025.
Investing in one of these machines is undoubtedly a big decision. So instead of adopting a universal approach, the article will go through standard requirements and the best machine to use according to them.
Skid Steer vs Backhoe: What works Best for Your Construction Site?
A skid steer is a small-sized engine-powered machine that can be used with several types of labor-saving attachments. On the other hand, a backhoe is excavating equipment typically fitted with a digging bucket at the back and a loader at the front.
Here are different factors to help you decide when to use a skid steer or backhoe.
Size of Construction Site
The size of work you will be undertaking should first be considered when choosing the right equipment to fulfill the job. For example, if you have a large construction site, it would be easier to operate a backhoe and make the most of the design features it offers.
On the other hand, if your construction site is in the middle of a residential area or busy commercial space, it would be better to use a skid steer. One can easily navigate the equipment in areas with space constraints.
Type of Materials Being Moved
What materials will you move to the construction site? If it is just dirt, you can use either of the two machines. But, if you will be carrying other materials like lumber and pipe, using a backhoe would be a convenient option.
Lumber and pipe can be strapped down on the backhoe’s bucket and moved around the construction site. One can also unload trucks by attaching pallet forks to a backhoe.
The Versatility of the Machine
When it comes to skid steer vs. backhoe attachments, skid steers comparatively support an extensive range of attachments depending on the job that needs to be done. Therefore, you need to figure out what attachments you will be using the most before deciding on the carrier.
For example, do you need different types of buckets like heavy-duty, ditch cleaning, soil excavation to optimize the digging process? Or do you need a hammer to break down concrete and rocks? Or laying pipework would be the primary requirement? Then, based on the attachment purpose, you can choose the appropriate equipment.
Type of Project
One can use these machines for different projects like construction, public and utility work, landscaping, mining, demolition, and quarries. For example, using a backhoe could be beneficial when undertaking a public works project. The equipment can quickly move between job sites and be used for multiple tasks like digging and loading.
On the other hand, a skid steer would be a better option for residential utility work as fiber optic. The same goes for landscaping projects. Reduced ground pressure, attachment versatility, and size of the site are factors that work in favor of a skid steer.
To maintain these pieces of equipment in proper order, you will be spending money on replacing tracks and tires, regular checks, and walkarounds. It would be best if you looked into fuel consumption, downtime, and the cost of servicing and repairs.
For example, using tracks might be the better option, but you need to spend time cleaning and maintaining them. Experts also suggest renting equipment for optimal utilization. Consider making a purchase when your business is scaling and requires consistent use of the equipment.
Ease of Operation
The consensus in the industry is that skid steers are much easier to operate. If you have relatively new and inexperienced employees, they would be comfortable with a skid steer. On the other hand, a backhoe requires some skill to operate. But it also provides better visibility as the operator will be sitting higher up in the cab. You might also want to train or hire experienced employees as operating skills for skid steer vs. backhoe differ.
When weighing your options of investing in a skid steer or backhoe equipment, it is recommended you look at variables like the size and terrain of the construction site if you have any space constraints or a particular type of task to perform. In addition, when preparing a budget for purchasing the equipment, consider the maintenance, parts, and repair costs.