Whether you own or rent equipment for your jobsite, it’s very likely that you have a skid steer or skid loader in your fleet. They are extremely versatile machines that can be useful on a variety of terrains and environments.
Skid loaders have dozens of different attachments available. This means that you can fit them to perform tasks you might not expect, such as tiling soil or destroying rocks and debris. To help you understand your options, here are 10 of the most useful skid steer attachments.
Pallet forks — or just forks in a general sense — are probably the most common attachment for a skid loader. They function the same way a palette on a forklift does: primarily lifting, stacking, and moving objects. But unlike a forklift, a skid steer’s fork is detachable, making these attachments useful for quick lifts that don’t require a forklift that serves only one purpose. Plus, skid steers can use their fork attachments to lift heavier objects, such as lumber.
These attachments are on par with forks in popularity, and they perform similar functions, like lifting and moving materials. However, buckets are more suited for scooping materials, such as soil or rocks. Simple buckets are usually inexpensive, making them easy to find, use, and change. There is a huge range of buckets out there to choose from — buckets that handle delicate loads to buckets that dispense cement. You are very likely to find at least one that suits your needs.
Known for their efficiency and power, augurs are another popular skid loader attachment that serve a slightly more niche purpose. Their long, thin shape and large teeth dig deep holes in soil while minimizing damage to the surrounding ground.The average augur can dig around 72 inches deep, but sizes vary. The size you choose should depend on the soil condition and overall climate in your area. If you need to dig deep holes, but only plan to do so infrequently, an augur could be a useful and inexpensive option.
Rake attachments are particularly useful for anyone working in landscaping, since their primary function is to gather rocks and sticks without wasting manpower or time. But beyond that, they can also crush small debris, aerate the soil, and level the ground. Not every operation needs a rake, but they can be an indispensable addition to landscaping or soil grading projects.
If there is a hole that needs digging, you will likely want to use a backhoe attachment. It grapples, digs, scoops, and carries objects. That might sound similar to a bucket attachment, but unlike buckets, the backhoe’s bucket is connected to a single-boom cylinder. Since it’s just an attachment, it will not have the mobility you would expect from a machine with a permanent boom and bucket. However, its lightweight capabilities actually make it useful for landscaping.
As the name would suggest, trencher attachments are suited for digging trenches — which is not an easy feat. It can take multiple people and many hours of hard physical labor to dig a trench, but this attachment makes it easy. Plus, it can rip through tough, rocky soil much more effectively than any human could. Trencher sizes vary anywhere from 30 to 60 inches. Choose your attachment based on the desired depth and width of your trench. Generally, a 42-inch trencher will dig an appropriately-sized trench for things like utility lines, drain pipes and irrigation systems.
If you’re working with soil, you will want to make sure you have a tiller attachment handy. It tills soil, breaking through rocks and dense clumps to soften it. You can also use this attachment to mix compost or other types of additives to soil. Although not every operation might benefit from a tiller, it is extremely useful for groundwork specifically.
Brush cutters — also known as brush hogs or stump grinders — are best used for removing thick foliage. This cutter can rip through thickets and even some trees. Usually, skid loaders with this attachment are sent in to clear out a worksite before other machinery is brought in. Brush hogs are not indestructible, though. They are best suited for cutting through greenery thinner than 60 inches.
Rock breaker attachments are almost exclusively used on concrete or asphalt, since the attachment’s primary purpose is to break apart extremely hard materials. They are powered by the hydraulics of the skid steer they are attached to, so you will want to make sure you have a machine with enough hydraulic power.
If you need to remove something large and heavy, such as boulders or logs, then a regular bucket might not cut it. Grapples — or grapple buckets — offer an extra advantage with big debris. Unlike a normal bucket, grapples are fitted with two grapple arms that help hold onto whatever you need to move. They are an excellent addition to any fleet.
Finding the right machines and attachments can be a hassle, with so many types of both available. Luckily, EquipmentShare can reduce that headache. We offer everything you need, from earth moving equipment and attachments to specialty gear such as generators and pumps. Whether you’re looking to buy, rent, or have your own equipment serviced, EquipmentShare has you covered. Find your nearest EquipmentShare location to learn more and get started.