For one-time projects, renting a backhoe is usually a smarter option compared to buying one. It saves you money, and you don’t have to worry about maintaining a complicated piece of equipment. In this post, we explain where you can rent a backhoe, what to expect when renting one, and how much it’ll cost you to rent a backhoe.
What You'll Learn Today
Where to Rent a Backhoe?
The best place to rent a backhoe is at a local equipment rental. There are plenty of those in every state. A quick Google search should reveal whether there’s a heavy equipment rental company near you.
We recommend picking a rental company that has a website. That makes it easier to do some quick checking on them before you go in. You can look up their variety of equipment, terms and conditions, and sometimes you can even request a quote so you know what to expect.
Pick a company that has good customer reviews. You can usually find those on Google, Facebook and review sites like Yelp.
Does Home Depot Offer Backhoe Rentals?
Some Home Depot centers now offer rentals of large equipment like backhoes, excavators and skid steers.
Visit their official website to see if there’s a nearby Home Depot with this service.
How Much Is It To Rent a Backhoe?
Cost of renting a backhoe depends on the kind of backhoe you get (size and power), how long you rent it for, and whether you also request for a professional operator.
Generally, the cost of renting a backhoe ranges between $150 to $500 per day, between $700 and $2,000 per week, and between $1,500 and $4,000 per month.
Some rental companies will offer cheaper rental rates for a number of hours, if you need a backhoe for a quick job.
The specific rental rate will depend on the following factors:
- The horsepower of the backhoe. More horsepower means a higher rate.
- Work capability including max lift capacity, and max dig depth. A more capable backhoe will cost you more to rent.
- The size of the backhoe. You can get a compact backhoe (perfect for small jobs and spaces) for a lower rate.
- Additional costs such as insurance, professional operator, and delivery.
Don’t forget to add the cost of fueling the backhoe. Most rental companies will rent out the backhoe fueled, and ask you to bring it back fueled.
What to Consider When Renting a Backhoe?
When renting a backhoe, consider the same things you would if you were buying one. Here are the most important ones.
Tip: Most rental companies will have a professional on hand who you can consult regarding your needs. Do not hesitate to ask for advice regarding which backhoe you need for a particular job. If you have your own professional backhoe operator, that’s even better as they’ll give you unbiased advice.
Match the job you are planning with the right amount of horsepower. If you’ll be digging out tree stumps, moving rocks or carrying heavy loads, a higher horsepower backhoe is worth the higher rental cost.
But be careful not to spend too much money on power you don’t need. Modern backhoes have more efficient engines and advanced hydraulics that reduce reliance on lots of horsepower.
By the way, this is one big advantage of renting vs. buying. There’s no risk of being stuck with the wrong machine. If you rent a backhoe and realize it’s under or over powered, you can simply bring it back and rent another one.
2. Dig Depth and Max Load
Choose a backhoe that can dig to the depth you need. A project like digging a basement requires a backhoe that has a long reach and can go deep.
Also check the max lift capacity if the job involves lots of lifting and carrying. A higher lift capacity will increase rental cost but it’ll save time on the job.
3. Equipment Condition
Don’t get a backhoe that appears too beat up and has a lot of hours under it. This is where having a pro with you can be helpful.
They’ll be able to spot a bad machine that’s likely to break down often on the job. Even if you are not responsible for repairs, an unreliable backhoe will slow you down.
4. Additional Costs
Check whether there are any additional costs not included in the rental rate such as liability or property insurance.
You’ll also be charged more if you request for a professional operator.
Don’t forget to ask about delivery. Who pays for delivery of the backhoe to and from the jobsite?
Tip: If you are the one responsible for delivery costs, look for a rental company that’s as close as possible to cut costs.
5. Fine Print
Finally, go through all the terms and conditions.
What happens in case of a breakdown? How many exact hours is a daily rental? Are there any late fees? Do you need to do any maintenance while in possession of the backhoe?
Should I Rent or Buy a Backhoe?
If you are still on the fence about whether to rent a backhoe or buy a new or used one, here are some factors to consider.
The main thing to consider is the kind of work you want the backhoe for.
If it’s a one time project such as digging a basement or a trench, then it makes more sense to rent. The same is true even if you are planning several projects. You can rent a backhoe only when you need it.
The only situation where it might be better to buy a backhoe is if you think you are going to need it for multiple projects long term.
For example, if you have a farm and have many projects in the works. Buying is also better if you are a contractor.
In such situations, the cost of renting a backhoe often can quickly add up.
Also consider your current budget. You may not have the capital to buy a new backhoe at the moment, especially if you want a capable machine.
Renting has additional advantages.
- You can usually rent a newer and more powerful backhoe that would be expensive to buy new or lightly used.
- Lower maintenance costs. You only need to do basic maintenance (grease, oil, tires etc.) for the period you are using the equipment. Owning a backhoe typically comes with higher maintenance costs.
- You can rent the specific backhoe you need for a particular job. Save money by renting a smaller backhoe for light projects, and rent a powerful backhoe for bigger projects.