A Guide to Excavator Attachments: What You Need to Know

Excavators are an essential piece of machinery for any construction or demolition business. As the name suggests, they are used for excavating tasks and are made up of a digging arm attached to a rotating platform, which in turn sits on a set of tracks so it can be moved to where it is required on site. 

However, the true versatility of an excavator comes with the various attachments that are connected to the arm to carry out these jobs. To get the best performance from your excavator and keep your project running on time and, just as importantly, on budget, you will need to know what each of these attachments does. 

#1 Pulverizer 

Pulverizers are great tools to break down concrete or rebar. This is especially useful in demolition projects where it can be used to take down structures and then break down any debris and make it easier to move. A pulverizer consists of a powerful set of jaws that close together with massive force. By taking huge ‘bites’ out of any structure you are demolishing, it can speed up the process significantly.

#2 Buckets

Like pulverizers, these are standard attachments for an excavator and are used for digging and loading. The type of bucket will, of course, vary according to the job at hand, but the most common are digging and trenching buckets. These buckets are often used in combination with a tilt rotator, which increases the flexibility of the bucket – especially in tight spaces.

#3 Augers

These attachments are used predominantly at the start of a construction project as they are instrumental for drilling the holes in the ground used in foundation work. You may also see these used later on in the project to help with landscaping, but this is less common. 

#4 Compactors

Again, as the name suggests, this attachment is used to compact soil or gravel to prepare a site for building construction or possibly laying a solid base for the construction of a road. These can also be used for landscaping, as they are considerably more efficient than completing the process manually. 

#5 Other attachments 

In addition to those main types of attachments, you will also see excavators fitted with hammers for breaking concrete and rippers used for breaking up compacted soil. You might also come across grapples, which are designed to grab and move materials like logs and rocks. 

Another attachment you might need is a flail mower, which you might have seen trimming hedges by the side of the road. On a construction site, these can be used for the same purpose or for clearing stubborn undergrowth. These are often used in combination with mulchers that will turn that plant material into mulch and rakes, which can be used to clear the area quickly. 

A few final thoughts

Excavators are truly versatile and, therefore, arguably one of the most important pieces of machinery on any demolition or construction site. Knowing about pulverizers, augers, compactors, and all the other attachments can turn a difficult job into a far easier one, cutting down your costs and improving your bottom line.

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