Bulldozers or backhoe, which machine is best for your project?

 The heavy machinery and equipment required in construction varies depending on the stage in which a work or project is located. Without a doubt, excavators and backhoes are two types of machinery commonly used in the vast majority of projects. At allparts, we share the differences between these two powerful machines that are sometimes confused in the terminology of the sector and we will help you decide which one is best for your project.

We know it, sometimes it is a bit difficult to notice exactly the details that differentiate an excavator from a backhoe. This can make selecting the equipment you need for your projects considerably difficult. Perhaps you are looking at different excavators for sale or you just want to delve into the differences between the two.

What is a backhoe?

A backhoe is a machine made up of a standard tractor as a base, which supports an excavation bucket at the end of a two-part articulated arm.

The term backhoe can be confusing to many people. It is important to note that this refers to the way the machine pushes the materials towards itself instead of pushing it forward in a conventional way.

The uses of backhoes are among others: the opening of trenches for the installation of pipes, the movement of earth and preparation of land to lay the foundations of buildings.

What is a bulldozer?

Like the backhoe, it is made up of almost the same basic elements: arm, bucket, cab. However, an excavator is a vehicle specially designed to carry out heavier tasks. They also generally have tracks instead of wheels.

By having a different design and not having the cab attached to the tracks, the excavator chassis can rotate 360 degrees. Also, the vast majority of these models usually have a blade at the bottom.

While its versatility is less than that of a backhoe, an excavator can also perform other tasks besides just digging. Some additional uses given to it are drilling concrete, drilling holes in the ground, gutter construction, gravel foundations, demolition of buildings, cleaning of canals and rivers.

Differences between bulldozer and backhoe.

Despite how similar their appearance can be, it is easy to differentiate them by taking into account three main factors: size, versatility and rotation. Each of these variables makes each machine ideal for different tasks:


The main difference between both machines is the size. For one thing, excavators are larger and heavier, while backhoes are slightly smaller. Also, the former tend to perform effectively in demolition, mining, well drilling and, in general, large-scale industrial projects.

On the other hand, backhoes are smaller and much more adaptable. They work great for agriculture, earth removal, loading work, and medium-scale construction and excavation projects.


Excavators and backhoes are also very different in terms of versatility. While both machines give you different attachment options, backhoes offer you a much wider variety and are capable of doing many more tasks without hassle. Also, they can handle well on roads, making them the ideal choice for multi-job site projects.


Finally, both machines have different ranges of rotation. At first glance this might not seem like a big variation, but the difference is a lot from an operator’s point of view. On the one hand, an excavator is capable of rotating the entire chassis and arm in 360 degrees, which gives greater maneuverability, excavators usually come on crawlers, which allows working without stabilizers, even on uneven terrain. In contrast, a backhoe can only rotate the arm over a range of 200 degrees and the need to use outriggers limits its ability to maneuver and slows down work; every time you want to move you have to raise the outriggers, move it, and stabilize again.