How to Choose the Best Mini Excavator | Lewis and Tibbitts, Inc.

How to Choose the Best Mini Excavator

Getting ready for a new construction job? It’s important to make sure you’re outfitted with all of the equipment you need to get it done, and that includes the mini excavator.

Whether you want to rent or buy an excavator in San Jose, CA, it’s important to make sure you’re getting the best excavator to fit your needs. Here’s a quick look at the most important characteristics and stipulations to keep in mind when researching mini excavator options for your upcoming job.

Simply put, will your chosen mini excavator be able to take on the job you have in store? You’ll need to have enough power for your specific project. Check the power measurements for the equipment. More powerful hydraulic systems allow for greater efficiency and productivity.

Performance doesn’t just mean power, though. You also need to consider all the tasks you’ll be performing. Zero tail swing and zero house swing features are important to consider, as these could allow you to work closer to walls, dig sites or other obstacles safely. If you know space or obstacles will be an issue in the job, these are important features to have.


The size of the mini excavator you choose will again depend heavily on the job you have in mind. Homeowners might be able to get away with a one- or two-ton mini excavator if the project is just a small landscaping project. However, you can get mini excavators in sizes up to nine tons. Residential projects are likely to have much smaller demands than industrial or municipal sewer projects.

You’ll need to make sure the mini excavator is actually able to fit on your site, and that the excavator is not so heavy that it will damage your site and result in a lot of rehabilitative or repair work.

Bucket capacity

Buckets are among the most commonly used features with excavators, so you’re going to need to check on the kind of buckets the excavator supports and the maximum capacity for each potential bucket option you could work with. Your capacity needs will again depend on the type and size of the job you’re taking on. If you’re going to be excavating more material, you’ll probably want a bigger bucket for the sake of efficiency with the job.

Type of job

The type of excavator you use and the features you need with it depend heavily on the type of job for which you’ll be using it. Are you using the excavator for digging trenches for utility line installation? Will you be excavating material for a building construction project? Are you working on a demolition of an existing building or structure? Carefully consider the kind of job you’re taking on and the specific equipment needs you have for that work.

These are just a few of the primary considerations to keep in mind as you choose the best mini excavator for your job. For more information about buying excavators and other construction equipment in San Jose, CA, contact us at Lewis and Tibbitts, Inc.