Dirt construction to complete projects such as landscaping, grading and trenching consists of excavation and unearthing using heavy machinery. Such equipment is also required for installing sewers, pipes, and wells. For these projects, you might be required to rent manageable yet heavy construction equipment such as skid steers or mini excavators. Both are reliable for completing a variety of projects, but there are some differences between the two. Below is a comparison between skid steers and mini excavators.
A skid steer, or a skid loader, is a compact four-wheel vehicle with lift arms that can easily be operated. This machinery is typically used for digging, loading and transferring dirt. It can also be used for plowing or removing massive amounts of snow. The attachment can be replaced by a snowplow or blade. A skid steer is most often used for excavation when digging up dirt. Attachments like a wheel saw, tiller, trencher or a ripper can be swapped out for the trench-digger. Sometimes, a skid steer can be attached to a pavement miller or a cement mixer to assist with cementing processes. The most common use of the skid steer, however, is for digging, so attachments such as the auger, trench-digger or backhoe are frequently used options. Be sure to have a skid steer operator who is familiar with the equipment and its uses.
A mini excavator is a vehicle available with either tracked wheels or four wheels. Similar to the skid steer, a mini excavator is powered by hydraulic fluid. Both mini excavators and skid steers have hydraulic pumps. Never use motor fuel on these vehicles. The mini excavator has tracks made of rubber or steel that supports the overall frame of the equipment. The mini excavator has an auger attached to the boom which is perfect for any excavation projects. Unlike the skid steer, which plows in a down-up motion, the mini excavator plows in an up-down manner. The augur may pick up smaller amounts of dirt per dig but has more accuracy than the skid steer if you’re working on a more sensitive excavation project. The skid steer will allow you to pick up more dirt in one dig.