Compact excavators, also known as mini excavators are suitable for construction projects that involve digging holes and trenches, removing stumps, flattening landscaping and demolishing small structures. Though small, compact excavators are powerful and can handle a variety of tasks efficiently. If you are undertaking a short-term project, it is more cost-effective to hire a compact excavator instead of purchasing one. However, before hiring the equipment, you need to ensure that it is in good physical condition. Here are some tips on how to choose the best equipment and get the best value from the hiring process.
Inspect the body of the excavator
Most compact excavators for hire are usually used; therefore, you should physically inspect the body of the equipment to ensure it is structurally sound. Although most plant hire companies adhere to a strict maintenance schedule for their equipment, it is still important to inspect them. Check the general housing, boom and undercarriage for dents, cracks or any other signs of physical defect. Some of these defects may be insignificant, but identifying them can prevent you from paying for repairs for dents, bends or cracks that you did not cause.
Inspect component connections
The connection points of components should be in proper working condition to ensure that the parts of the excavator operate smoothly. Worn or broken connections can compromise the performance of the equipment, check the links around the boom, bucket, and stick to ensure they are steady and reliable. Also, moving parts such as the pins should be lubricated and not worn out. You can ask the dealer to lubricate the parts before transporting the excavator to your project site.
Check the attachments
Different types of attachments can be used with compact excavators, and this allows the equipment to perform various types of tasks. Some of the common ones include trenching and grading buckets, plate compactors, hydraulic breakers, clamps and grapples. Check that the attachments you require for your project are available and in good working condition. You can also fit them onto the compact excavator and operate the equipment to observe their performance.
Check the hydraulic equipment
Compact excavators make use of hydraulic fluid power to create mechanical energy that's necessary for lifting, hauling, trenching, and other applications of the equipment. Hydraulic equipment consists of a hydraulic pump and other components such as hydraulic cylinder, seals, and rings which should be in good condition for the machine to work efficiently. Check the hydraulic hoses, pump and cylinder for signs of leakage. Also, ensure that clean hydraulic fluid is fed into the system as contaminated fluid can corrode the cylinder components.
Once you have inspected the compact excavator, familiarize yourself with the controls and practice operating it. Also, ensure that the operator's seat is comfortable and adjustable to your desired height.