The Difference between Excavator and Wheel Loader

In mining, of course, you need a lot of heavy equipment to help dig and move the products. Heavy equipment comes in different types and can do different things, so it can be made to fit the needs.

The excavator is a piece of heavy equipment that is often used to dig holes. This heavy equipment is not just used for mining. It is also used for other things, like building.

Wheel loaders are another important piece of heavy equipment used in mining and building. At first glance, it might seem like excavators and wheel loaders do the same thing: moving things from one place to another.

But as was also found out, the two big pieces of equipment differ. And to find out, let’s look at how excavators and wheel loaders differ.

Differences in Meaning

Difference between Excavator and Wheel Loader

An excavator also called a dredging machine, is a piece of heavy machinery with a rod or arm, a stick (shoulder), and a basket that works as a dredging tool.

A diesel engine powers the hydraulic system of an excavator, and the wheels are in the shape of a chain or track hoe.

Difference between Excavator and Wheel Loader
Wheel loader

A wheel loader is a piece of heavy machinery that looks like a bulldozer but has rubber wheels instead of metal ones. This machine works well in areas or fields that are flat, dry, and stable.

This is because it has rubber wheels, which make it easy to move and give it a lot of space.

The Function Differences


Excavators play a very important role in mining, building, and plantation work, among other things. Excavators are useful in so many ways, including:

  • Do things like dredging, digging, and moving dirt, rocks, mud, and soil.
  • Dig a hole in the earth.
  • Make drains like ditches.
  • I am moving mud or sediment from the bottom of a river or pier’s edge.
  • Material is crushed or taken apart.
  • Getting the surface of the soil level and packing down.

Wheel Loader

In general, the job of wheel loaders is to move materials into trucks. This stuff can’t just be given away for no reason.

The area should have a flat surface, and the truck carrying the materials should be close to the wheel loader.

The wheel loader also does the following:

  • It can be used to clear land or clear land.
  • Leveling out or filling in holes.
  • It is not a good idea to strip or dredge the surface of the soil.
  • Using a flat or finishing plane to level the surface.

The Type Difference


Excavators types are divided into several types that can be tailored to the needs. The types of excavators include:

  • Excavator Dragline

This excavator is connected by an iron rope which is usually used to dig material into transport equipment such as trucks or stockpiling areas. The coverage area for this excavator is quite wide and very suitable for mining land use.

  • Compact Excavator

Compact excavators are often used for jobs such as digging, loading, grabbing objects, and lifting materials. This excavator uses a diesel engine to produce motor movement and a hydraulic pump.

  • Crawler

The crawler model is often used for landscape planning, digging trenches, and mining, among other things. This excavator is a good choice for use on uneven ground.

  • Wheels

This type can be used on flat, hard surfaces. So it makes sense that this excavator can move quickly and easily on asphalt and concrete roads.

  • Suction

A suction excavator is also available. This machine is often used to dig in cracked areas, work underground, and clean up debris. This excavator has several tools that can be used to protect areas that are likely to crack from damage.

Wheel Loader

In general, wheel loaders are divided into two types: light loaders and heavy loaders. But in the market, various wheel loaders can be tailored to your needs. These wheel loaders include:

  • Compact Wheel Loader

It can be used for production tasks that take place in a small space. Extra tools can be added to and changed on this model as needed.

  • Small Wheel Loader

Small wheel loaders can be used in tight places like compact wheel loaders. Besides being small, it is also. This wheel loader is easy to move and gives you more options.

  • Medium Wheel Loader

This wheel loader is very popular because it is easy to change and is a common model used in mining and construction.

  • Large Wheel Loader

Large wheel loaders have strong machines that meet industry standards. The efficiency level is at its best and can even get through rough terrain.

This type can be paired with backhoes, scoop loaders, baskets, front-ends, or whatever else is needed. Like other wheel loaders, this one can move things from one place to another or clean up trash.

Differences in How it Works


The workings of the excavator use a hydraulic system to move the boom. Simply put, the components contained in the excavator work with the control settings of the hydraulic system carried out by the operator.

There are various ways of working with an excavator, namely:

  • Swing: The excavator can perform a swing motion which is a full 360-degree rotation according to the operator’s control.
  • Traveling Left and Right: The excavator can move forward and backward, controlled using a control valve.
  • Raise down: The excavator moves up and down with a controlled boom when the lever on the cab causes the boom raise valve and the boom down valve on the control valve to be connected by the boom cylinder.
  • Arm In Out: The arm on the excavator can be moved because of the arm cylinder. This section can open and close according to need.
  • Bucket Crawl Dump: Buckets or baskets on excavators may open due to the presence of a dump bucket and will close due to bucket crawl performance. Dump buckets and crawl buckets work in opposite directions.

Wheel Loader

A hydraulic system is used to move the wheel loader. This is done so that the amount of energy used goes up. This makes doing heavy work like dredging soil or moving things easier.

The wheel loader can do some basic moves, starting with a basket or bucket that digs up the material and lifts it to the transport truck.

This is done by lowering the bucket to the ground, pushing it forward until the material falls into it, lifting the bucket, and carrying the material to the haul truck.

That’s what you need to know about the differences between excavators and wheel loaders. Both of these pieces of heavy equipment have very important jobs to do. But how these two big pieces of equipment are used must be changed based on what needs to be done.