When you first see the word “excavation” you might immediately associate it with an excavator, but there are other methods of excavation that can work much better. Hydro excavation trucks or “hydrovacs”, are one such method. Industrial hydrovac operations are perfect for precise excavation due to how a hydro excavation truck works. Unlike excavators that rely on metal blades, hydro excavation trucks use a high–pressure hose and vacuum combination to break up dirt and suck up all the debris respectively.
Not only does this reduce the clean-up process, but it’s also safer than using traditional tools and requires less manual labour. We explore some of the main uses and applications of hydrovacs below.
Industrial Hydrovac Use: Daylighting
Easily the most widespread use of hydro excavation trucks is the process of daylighting. This refers to the practice of exposing underground utilities like pipes and plumbing lines. Because water is the only thing that’s being used to expose these utilities, the utilities don’t get damaged by excavation and can be properly fixed or replaced.
Because sometimes it’s unclear as to the layout of piping, contractors use hydrovacs to daylight and discover whether piping is vertical or horizontal.
Using Hydrovacs for Soil Trenching
Because hydrovacs are perfect for precise digging, they’re often a natural choice for soil trenching to lay pipes, cables, or other underground utilities. Because these utilities often aren’t very large, hydro excavation trucks can dig out what’s required and minimally affect the nearby area. Unlike other digging equipment, these trucks can also switch to using hot water to break up ground in cold weather which brings us to our next point…
Using Hydrovacs for Digging in Cold Weather
As we just mentioned, you can use hydrovacs in cold weather because they can dig with hot water. Normal heavy-duty equipment requires the ground to be warm enough to break which slows down operations.
Because hydrovacs only carve out a small area, they require less restoration following the completion of a project and are perfect for a wide range of tasks and projects. Plus, because hydro excavation trucks are also equipped with powerful vacuum equipment they can clear away debris with ease.