Trenchless Technology’s Vacuum Excavator Spec Guide

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Contractors working in an increasingly crowded underground space know the value of calling 811 before they dig to locate utilities. Once located, the contractor can choose to hand dig around the underground lines, but a more efficient method – the vacuum excavator – is available. In addition to the pre-drill locates, contractors in the HDD world also use these large-scale suction machines to remove and transport drilling spoils.

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RELATED: Vacuum Excavators Give Contractors a Better View at What’s Underground

The vacuum excavator, most commonly of the hydro excavation variety, is a truck-based machine akin to sewer cleaners commonly owned by municipalities; however, those in the industry are quick to point out that the trucks are completely different animals.

The search for a vacuum excavator begins the same as any piece of equipment: know the job you’re planning to complete. By identifying the typical type of work your crew will perform, the equipment decision process will run a lot more smoothly.

RELATED: A Look at the Latest Vacuum Excavator Offerings

To help make that decision easier, Trenchless Technology reached out to the manufacturers to submit some of their latest offerings. All the information you see on these pages comes directly from the vacuum excavation manufacturers. No direct comparisons between equipment or manufacturers are implied.

Mike Kezdi is associate editor of Trenchless Technology.

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About Author

Mike Kezdi

Mike Kezdi is an associate editor with Benjamin Media Inc. where he covers everything from compact equipment happenings, to the latest in trenchless technologies and oil and gas pipeline projects. Mike joined BMI in 2013 after seven years in the newspaper world at the top weekly newspaper chain in Northeast Ohio. Contact Mike at

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