If you’ve never heard of vacuum excavation, it’s time to learn more about this technique.

It’s often the best way to excavate when working in close quarters, such as on a service line or underground utility, and can even be used in archaeological dig sites.

Vacuum excavation uses high-pressure air or water to loosen soil or other materials before they’re removed with a vacuum device.

It combines two things namely vacuum cleaners and excavators—making it easy to picture what’s going on and allows for many applications.


Here’s Everything You Need to Know About Vacuum Excavation

1. Vacuum Excavation Is Not The Same As Hydro Excavation

Vacuum Excavation Is Not The Same As Hydro Excavation

You may have heard of hydro excavation, which uses high-pressure water to break up soil and then vacuum pumps to remove it.

Vacuum excavation isn’t the same as hydro excavation though.

The two processes do use a similar process, however, and can be easily confused with one another.

Hydro excavation is generally used for commercial or industrial projects, whereas vacuum excavation is used for more residential projects.

2. You Can Hire Vacuum Truck Services

Before you can handle a vacuum truck, you must first learn what a vacuum truck is.

A vacuum truck is a tank truck with a pump and a tank. The pump can effectively vacuum out any liquids, sludge, slurries, or solids from a location.

You can hire these trucks for industrial or commercial locations that need regular cleaning.

The best part about hiring vac truck services is that they’ll be flexible enough to provide you with the equipment you need for your business.

You can hire these trucks to clean out waste from landfills, storm drains, and other types.

These services will even go so far as to rent the trucks to you if you’re interested in doing this service on your property.

3. Minimal Digging Means Fewer Utility Line Strikes

Minimal Digging Means Fewer Utility Line Strikes

One of the most significant benefits of vacuum excavation is that it makes it easy to avoid utility line strikes.

When you’re digging, you risk cutting into an underground utility line, which can be a hassle.

Aside from damaging your equipment or injuring people, it can shut down your project altogether if you have to wait for the utility company to repair the damaged line.

Vacuum excavation reduces this risk substantially because there’s minimal digging involved in the process.

This means less area needs to be cleared to find a point of interest lines and lessen the odds of inadvertently striking them.

It also means less time spent excavating and more time spent uncovering utilities.

4. You Can Use Vacuum Excavation In Hazardous Waste Cleanup

You can use vacuum excavation for hazardous waste cleanup. If you’re a homeowner and there’s some hazardous waste on your property, vacuum excavation is an efficient way to remove it.

This method of digging doesn’t release any hazardous materials into the environment because no one breaks through the contaminated soil.

Other digging methods—like using a mechanical backhoe—result in soil ending up in the air, where people could breathe it in, or ending up in water sources, where people could drink it.

Further, vacuum excavation prevents water from contaminating hazardous material because no fluids are used during this process.

It’s an environmentally friendly way of removing hazardous waste and debris that can help you comply with the Environmental Protection Agency’s or EPA rules, avoid fines or penalties, and avoid harm to human health and the environment.

5. The Smaller Dig Site Means Less Damage To The Surrounding Property

The Smaller Dig Site Means Less Damage To The Surrounding Property

Vacuum excavation is also preferable for smaller dig sites, which means minor damage to the surrounding property.

The process of vacuum excavation has a lot of positives: less mess after the job is completed, less danger for people working in the area, and a lower likelihood of damage to other underground utilities.

Additionally, vacuum excavators are much faster than traditional digging methods. They allow your contractor to complete jobs quickly and pass along those savings.

6. Vacuum Excavation Is A Precise Method That Can Be Used For Both Large And Small Jobs

Vacuum excavation is a precise method used for both large and small jobs. For example, it’s often used by utility line installation companies when they have to dig to lay down new lines.

In these cases, the vacuum excavation service provides an efficient means of removing dirt from the hole so that it can be replaced once the job is completed.

Nevertheless, it isn’t just used for big jobs like this—it can also be employed for smaller tasks, such as drain cleaning or plumbing repairs. These services are exact with how they remove dirt from around pipes and other areas where you want them to work.


To summarize, vacuum excavation is a cost-effective and safe way to solve problems related to underground utility lines. Because it doesn’t require as much digging or material removal, vacuum excavation minimizes the risks of damage to both your yard and the utility lines themselves. With its precise digging capabilities and non-destructive digging tools, vacuum excavation is a valuable solution for homeowners who need underground utility work.

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