Everything You Need to Know About Hiring an Excavator

Construction site excavator.

Often in the construction industry, you will need more powerful equipment than you own. You might briefly think about purchasing the equipment, but the big machines are pricey. Hiring your equipment is an excellent idea for a situation where you know you will never use the heavy equipment enough to justify purchasing big machines.

One of the most frequently hired pieces of equipment is the excavator. Excavators are highly versatile pieces of machinery and are helpful in many areas such as construction sites, pipeline laying, forestry, and mining.

Here at ESM Resources, we offer a variety of excavators for your project needs. We find that many people are not comfortable hiring an excavator. This is understandable, especially if you have little experience. We have put together a guide to help you learn what about hiring an excavator.


Have a Plan

Long before the excavator rolls onto your job site; you will need to have a plan in place. When you contact the company that hires machinery, be ready with the details such as your location, what you will use the machine for, and how long you think the work will take.


Size Does Matter

To determine which excavator is the best for your project, you will need to know the terrain, the presence of obstacles such as fences or buildings, and any height limitations such as trees or power wires. Make sure you have enough space for maneuvering and a spot for dumping the soil as well.



Do you or someone else on your site know how to run an excavator? If you do not understand what you are doing, learning on hired equipment as you go is a terrible idea. It will cost more to hire an operator. However, you will make up for what you spend in salary with efficiency, safety, and a job done right.

Construction worker operator.

In addition to choosing an excavator that is the right size, you need to determine which type of excavator you need for the project. There are several different types of excavators, and all have job scenarios for which they are suited.

  • Standard Excavator – These are the most common type of excavators hired. They use numerous attachments and weigh between 10 tonnes to 80 tonnes.
  • Mini Excavator – Essentially, a mini excavator is a smaller version of a standard excavator. These machines are 5.5 tonnes in size. Most residential projects need mini excavators because of the tight workspace.
  • Long Reach Excavator – The increased reach of these machines makes them a good choice for demolition projects and earthworks.
  • High Reach Excavator – The high reach excavator is often used in demolition projects that involve tall buildings. The high boom keeps the operator safe from falling debris.
  • Amphibious Excavators – The amphibious excavators’ design makes them ideal for dredging and other types of work around water where standard excavators would fail.


Safety Protocols

Whether you are an experienced operator who has worked with many excavators or a novice who is just learning the ropes, you will need to have a strong understanding of the necessary safety protocols involved with using these machines.

  • Before you dig, double-check site plans and contact local utilities.
  • Check the excavator for any hazards or potential problems that may occur during the use of the equipment.
  • Wear all required safety gear. This includes a hardhat, safety vest, protective ear covers, and respiratory protection.
  • Wear your seatbelt.
  • Never allow anyone to dig under the excavator.
  • Map out the excavator’s route so that it is as flat as possible.
  • Travel directly up slopes never diagonally.
  • Make turns slowly and carefully, avoiding any sudden movements or sharp turns.
  • When driving an excavator, keep the bucket as low as possible. This will provide a clear view.
  • Lower the bucket when parked on a level surface.
  • Make sure that the excavator cab is clean and free from debris. Also, remove anything that is blocking the operator’s view.

Hiring an excavator is much less daunting when you are working with a company worthy of your trust. Since 2015, ESM Resources has been a top company for dry hire in Western Australia. As a family-owned and operated business, we are committed to running a safe, compliant, and cost-effective company.

Hitachi ZX360LC hydraulic excavator

To learn more about our machines available for hire and the details involved, feel free to contact us here at ESM Resources. Our experienced staff can answer your questions and set the hiring process in motion.