Machines 101: 3 Must-Knows About Heavy Equipment

Unarguably, in the automotive field of machines and everything in between, heavy equipment is the king of them all. Not only does the size play a huge factor as they impudently take the mechanical crown. The actual applications of heavy equipment trample every machine or any other mechanism by leaps and bounds.

By definition, heavy equipment is described as heavy-duty vehicles which are specially designed for executing construction tasks. Alternatively called heavy machines, heavy trucks, construction equipment, engineering equipment, heavy vehicles, or heavy hydraulics, these motorized mechanisms are most frequently the ones which are used in earthwork operations. In essence, they are huge “vehicular tools” that are usually seen when construction is ongoing, especially in erecting a wide array of constructions projects such as bridges, commercial structures and residential buildings, among many others.

With this in mind, the recent boom of the heavy equipment industry is a reflection of the advantages and applications heavy equipment has on a wide array of fields. For one, these machines increase the rate of output through work progress with the best effective and efficient methods. That equates to reduction of the overall construction costs especially for large contracts.

Another evident advantage is that these mechanisms carry out activities which cannot be done manually, and similarly, they eliminate the heavy manual work by construction workers, reducing fatigue and other related health issues that entails with manual labor. Overall, the use of heavy equipment maintains the planned rate of production as well as the high-quality standards often required by present-day design and specifications.

Nonetheless, heavy equipment can be further classified in various types, depending on the needs of the construction. Overall, heavy equipment use can be very confusing without a guide on how to assess its usage. It is just proper to lay out the basics in order to assess the best heavy equipment to utilize for specific tasks and projects.

Know Functionalities by Heart

The initial move towards a smooth use of heavy equipment is having even just the basics with regard to using a heavy equipment. As stated above, heavy equipment can be further narrowed down to a wide array of types based on their different functions. In a general, heavy equipment can be classified to 4 basic types.

The first type is called earthmoving equipment. This earthmoving and mining equipment is intended chiefly to “move earth and minerals” in large excavation and mining projects, though some of this type of equipment can also be used in other applications. Under earthmoving equipment is its sub-type – underground mining equipment which is designed for moving material in a very little headroom and space environment.

It should be noticed that there are similarities with some of the surface mining equipment as well as some very specialized pieces developed specifically for the underground mining application. This equipment includes excavators, loaders, backhoe, Motor Graders, Motor Scrapers and Wheeled Loading Shovels.

Another classification according to function is Construction vehicles. Engineering or construction vehicles are heavy-duty vehicles specially designed for executing construction tasks most frequently ones involving transport of materials. Heavy equipment includes dumpers, tankers, tippers and trailers.

Material Handling Equipment is designed to handle, store, transport, distribute or dispose materials used in construction. This type includes cranes, conveyors forklifts and hoists.

Finally, there is the Construction Equipment which is comprised of mechanisms that perform various functions such as to excavate, mix construction material, reduce waste materials through compaction, lay asphalt and plaster road works, among others. In this type are pavers, compactors, concrete mixers and road rollers.

Given that a person understands each function of heavy equipment, he or she can easily assess what type to use. Also, knowing that each specific task is done by a special mechanism, productivity and quality may be improved drastically.

Assess Costs to Operate

A prerequisite to all construction projects is being economical and cost-efficient. This is because the construction process requires a significant amount to fund the whole project. As such, it can ultimately test the resources of the person, or company, responsible for the funding.

In the same way, the use of heavy equipment can be quite alarming if mismanaged. This is why a person should always take careful steps in acquiring heavy equipment and consider viable options as to how to effectively utilize these machines. In fact, it all boils down to two acquisition paths – purchasing for long-time and repetitive use, and heavy equipment rentals.

In acquiring heavy equipment, the purchaser should take into consideration the brand of the manufacturers as well as the costs that come after. Considering industry experience, Bobcat has made a stamp as a trusted brand in the heavy equipment industry. It is an American-based company that has proven themselves over the years to be a major player in the field of manufacturing a wide array of equipment, ranging from skid steer loaders, compact excavators, compact utility vehicles and other hydraulic equipment.

Construction managers and other people involved in construction can opt to buy new or used machinery. However, choosing slightly used and still reliable heavy equipment to cut down the costs is an alternative that has been growing popularity nowadays. Furthermore, to truly to cut costs, heavy equipment rentals can be the best option to still get consistent production efficiency that is far less expensive.

Overall, the costs of utilization of such heavy equipment depend on the amount of resources present. Heavy equipment costs should be managed with great critical thinking.

Plan and Prepare the Logistics

Logistics is the process of planning, implementing, and controlling the efficient, effective flow and storage of goods, services, and related information from point of origin to point of consumption for the purpose of conforming to customer requirements. In the field of heavy duty equipment, logistics may just draw the line between productivity and failure.

The fact is that contractors face some pretty tricky challenges when transporting and setting up heavy equipment especially in confined urban jobsites with space limitations. Though it is obvious that many of the heavy equipment manufactured is large in size, it is important for construction managers to take note of the way it will fit or be transported. Contractors need to check out everything before they bring the equipment to the site. Say, with cranes, it is very important to have a dedicated space and the correct ground conditions for the expected ground-bearing pressure of the crane.

In relation to the prices and the cost, heavy equipment transport is very expensive and there are other risks to having the wrong equipment, such as risk of injury or damage. For example, a bulldozer may not fit in an urban setting where the residences are closely spaced. A contractor or construction manager may opt to use a small dozer, a smaller alternative to the said machinery.

Many of the people who are experienced on this job suggests construction managers should take note of all the heavy equipment necessary, and the ample space that these machines are going to need in order to operate at their maximum efficiency.


Heavy equipment is the king of automotive. Not only is it big in size, it is also big in the applications it can be used for. Construction managers and aspiring contractors make use of this equipment to make production fast and meet the high quality standards which only heavy equipment can offer. However, there still are challenges that are present in using these machines. This is why it is important to grasp the concepts on how to assess the best heavy equipment to use.