The Top Heavy Equipment Used in Home Construction: A Guide for Aspiring Contractors

Contractors and construction firms manage a fleet of heavy equipment, including excavators, cranes, and bulldozers. These are expensive, so they sometimes rent instead of buy to save costs. Either way, contractors and construction firms must manage their equipment fleet well to maximize the value of their spending.

If you’re still an aspiring contractor, the question you need to answer every year or so is whether you are more profitable because of purchasing your equipment. If your goal for buying equipment is to increase efficiency, that should result in more work done in fewer hours, and a higher profit. Otherwise, your purchase hasn’t met its goal.

Hence, start your home-build business by focusing on entry-level homes. It’s one of the most affordable types of homes for first-time buyers. Building them can give you a significant advantage because it has a constant demand, especially in this period when people are rushing to buy homes.

Plus, entry-level homes don’t require costly heavy equipment. These basic ones can give you a good headstart:

1. Generators

You need a power source to make your power tools, lighting, and other electronics work. A medium-powered generator is standard in home construction sites. Supplying 5 to 20 kilowatts of power, it’s more than enough to make circular saws, air compressors, power drills, tile cutters, cement mixers, and temporary lifts work. You can also use it to power up tools and equipment for building low-rise apartments and small roads, like driveways.

2. Backhoe

A backhoe helps in excavating trenches below the machine level. You’d need it if you build homes on sloping lands so that you can make the ground level. A backhoe can also aid in small demolitions and transporting lightweight building materials. If you’d build amid heavy snowfall or after a hurricane, your backhoe can dig up snow and clean up debris as well. Simply put, it’s a versatile tractor that can make your construction work faster and easier.

3. Bulldozer

Though building a starter home doesn’t always require a bulldozer, consider including it in your fleet. Some sites need to have their topsoil layer removed first before building a structure on it. A bulldozer uses hydraulic pistons to lift and lower the plate, sinking into the soil and stripping it off. It removes weak soil or rock strata, helping make a home’s foundation more stable.

construction compactor

4. Compactor

As its name suggests, a compactor or roller makes the earth’s surface or a particular material compact. For example, if you’ll apply a layer of asphalt on a driveway, you’d need a smooth wheel roller. A pneumatic tired roller would work well, too, especially for compacting finely grained soil.

5. Feller Bunchers

To remove trees from the construction field, you’d need a feller buncher. It cuts the trunk, grabs it, and gathers it in a separate area to make their loaders’ jobs easier.

6. Dump Trucks

The cut-down trees and other construction waste all go to the dump trucks. They transport the discarded materials to another site or a dump yard.

7. Air Compressor

Air compressors used in construction come in different types. A heavy-duty air compressor trailer, for example, can be easily transported to separate work areas, which may help you save costs on several units of compressors. As for its purpose, an air compressor serves many. It can clean up the mess from woodworking when set at 30 psi or less. That’s enough for a short burst of air that will instantly shove debris and dust away.

You can also use an air compressor for painting jobs. It can power a spray gun, helping you achieve a smoother finish than you’d typically achieve with an ordinary spray can.

8. Lighting

Lighting up a construction site isn’t as simple as buying a few light bulbs or floodlights. It requires a plan, which should indicate the appropriate level of lighting needed for safe and effective work. It should also include a traffic control plan for tractor or truck drivers, and most importantly, a safety plan.

There are three levels of lighting for different work zone considerations. Level 1 lighting is essential for workers who constantly move and use slow-moving equipment. Level 2 lighting helps equipment operators, such as those applying asphalt or even out ground surfaces. And finally, level 3 lighting is for pothole fillers, pavement patchers, electricians, and other professionals that install utilities.

As for the specific types of lighting, you can choose between light towers, balloon lighting, roadway lighting, and headlights installed on the equipment.

These pieces of equipment are already a handful to manage, and it’s just for an entry-level construction job. If you’re ready to deal with them all, you’re well on your way toward a promising career in building homes.

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