Compactor in a construction site

Types of Compactors Used In the Construction Sector

Share to :

There is no doubt that the construction industry is currently a booming one. Many buildings are coming up along with infrastructure virtually everywhere you look. To this end, people are quitting their 8-5 jobs to invest in various construction projects.

While the profits to be made are staggering, they can only become a reality for your company with the right machinery and workforce. When most people think of construction machinery, they visualise a truck hire for their NZ-based projects.

Though essential for carting material away from and to your site, there is more to construction machines than transporting materials. One of the crucial preparation works for your site is compaction. This is a mechanical process that increases the density of soil.

It is meant for stabilising your site, reducing water seepage, swelling and contraction, preventing soil settlement and frost damage and decreasing the air voids in your soil. Here are the compaction machines that will handle this crucial process of your construction.

Vibratory Compactors

These operate on the principle of uniform particle rearrangement for your site. They will thus increase the load-bearing strength and density of your soils while decreasing its voids. There are two vibratory compactor variants, including Padfoot and smooth drum compactors.

The smooth drum compactors use three forces for soil compaction including vibration, impact and static pressure. Padfoot drum machines use the same force, plus manipulative forces. Smooth-run compactors are used for granular soils with particles ranging from fine sand to large rocks while Padfoot machines are used for soils with an equal percentage of fine sand and large rocks.

Tamping Foot Compactors

Compactor on an asphaltThese are self-propelled, high-speed and non-vibratory compactors that often have padded steel wheels and dozer blades. They will compact your site from the ground up, and their pads are tapered to avoid fluffing the soil when removing the lift.

The topsoil of your compacted ground will thus be sealed and relatively smooth. Tamping foot compactors are ideally used for large scale projects since they need uninterrupted passes so that they build up speed.

Sheepfoot Compactors

These have a cylindrical pad with lengths of 200mm and width of 3-5 inches. These pads will penetrate the top lift while compacting the layer below. Sheepfoot compactors will thus fluff your topsoil and leave a compacted base layer.

The fluffing proves beneficial for drying out and aerating wet silts and clays. The fluffed top layer can, however, become spongy when it rains and thus slow down your compaction process.

Pneumatic Compactors

These are used for medium and small construction projects where the ground comprises granular and bladed materials. Pneumatic compactors are usually utilised as finishing machines once a vibratory compactor has completed its lift.

They use the kneading action of their staggered tire patterns to seal and smooth the surface. Unlike other machines, pneumatic compactors are used on both soil and asphalt.

Most contractors will ignore the compaction of their construction site and instead focus on excavating and hauling materials. Without one of the above compactors, however, your work quality will be significantly compromised.

Hiring the machine from a contractor who is not keen on technology and maintenance will also leave you with substandard compaction.

Scroll to Top