Uses of Some Common Road Construction Equipment

30 November 2016
 Categories: Construction & Contractors, Blog

Equipping a civil construction site with proper tools and equipment is essential for ensuring timely completion of works and achievement of good quality results. The combination of tools and equipment used for a civil construction depends on the nature and requirements of that particular project, and it is up to the civil engineering staff to determine which tools and equipment to use. While the list of civil construction tools and equipment is long, the tools and equipment used for each project are project-specific.

Many road users usually see a number of different types of equipment being used at road construction sites but do not have a basic understanding of what the machines are used for. Here is a look at a few equipment commonly found at road construction projects, and what they are used to do.

Vibrating Rollers

Proper soil compaction is essential for every road construction project. If the subbase soil is not tightly compacted, the road built will quickly start deteriorating. Vibrating rollers are specially designed to ensure the soil beneath which a road will be constructed is properly compacted. They come in a variety of sizes, ranging from small, hand-push rollers to large towed or self-propelled machines.

Small vibrating rollers are popular for their ability to be used for a number of different working conditions. Thanks to their compact size, they can be easily be moved to different site locations on the truck bed. It is favoured for road repair and widening jobs. Large towed rollers drag behind vehicles with adequate horsepower and traction. They provide good compaction qualities, but they can prove difficult to operate in sloppy terrains. Self-propelled rollers can handle most slopes, but they are more susceptible to breakdowns.

Water Bowsers

Water supply is a staple requirement of the compaction process. Subgrade soil often requires additional water to reach moisture content levels necessary for effective compaction. Typically, this involves towing or trailering water tanks or bowsers to the work site on a flatbed truck.


Road construction works often extend over long distances. Therefore, it is important for project managers to provide the right means of transport. Vehicles are primarily needed to perform the following tasks: (1) transport construction materials, tools and equipment to the job site; and (2) provide construction workers and the supervisory team with easy access to the site.

Routine inspection and maintenance of all equipment used for road construction helps prevent breakdowns that may delay projection completion. It also ensures a long equipment lifespan.