Backhoes are heavy equipment used for digging, trenching, backfilling, and loading...Show More
Backhoes are heavy equipment used for digging, trenching, backfilling, and loading. They’re equipped with a digging bucket that is on the front of the machine, not the back. The backhoe’s bucket faces toward the cab, pulling earth inward rather than scooping it up and away.
Standard backhoes, which can dig to depths of 12 to 14 feet, are designed to move heavy objects, and, depending on their size, can range from 60 to 105 horsepower (hp). Smaller mini backhoes can dig 6 to 8 feet down. They can also be used to move heavy or bulky materials such as concrete, rubble, and debris. Check out the FAQs below to learn more.
Equipment ID: 20-230
Equipment ID: 20-247
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A standard backhoe can cost $287 a day to rent, but your cost may change depending on size, horsepower, and how long you need it. A weekly rental for a John Deere 310/Case 580 Standard Backhoe runs at $822 a week or $2,128 a month.
The size of the backhoe you need depends largely on the size of the job you’re doing. You’ll want to choose a backhoe with enough horsepower to complete your task and the capacity to dig as deep as you need to go.
Mini backhoes are good for small jobs, while standard backhoes work for medium-sized tasks. Most standard backhoes can dig to 14 feet deep and have lift capacities ranging from 5,500 to 8,200 pounds. Most buckets range from 12 to 36 inches. Larger buckets can be better suited to large-scale projects if you need to carry more or heavier materials.
Backhoes aren’t just for digging. They can be fitted with a variety of attachments that can allow you to do things like compact or break up soil, move snow, and break up ice. Attachments include tampers, augers, hammers, rippers, grapples, and thumbs — which work like a human thumb to grasp objects such as debris for removal and loading.
Because backhoe attachments are removable, they can be used on other construction machines that take attachments, such as tractors and skid steers.
Backhoes are great for small to moderate-sized projects, while excavators work well for tasks that require more machine power, such as demolition. Because they’re smaller, backhoes are easier to transport than excavators and, because they have tires rather than tracks, they can even be driven on roads at up to 25 mph.
The bigger your project and the more power you need, the more likely you’ll be to need an excavator.
A backhoe license is not required. However, operators should be trained on how to safely use the equipment. It’s beneficial for the operator to have a commercial driver’s license to transport the backhoe from one job site to another. There are heavy equipment certification courses to help operators build their skills.