Augers come in a huge array of sizes, from tiny handheld ones that can be turned by hand or with a cordless drill to huge ones that need to be attached to a JCB. They are a great aid for many reasons and jobs but you need to ensure you choose the right one.
What the Auger Does
The easiest way to describe an auger is that it looks the same as a drill bit. In fact, it operates in the same way. The difference is an auger bit is designed to cut into the ground and can be used to make very deep holes.
In effect, auger bits are used to drill into the seabed for oil or into the land to create a well.
Of course, with so many different applications, it is important you choose the right one for the job at hand.
Here is what you need to consider when choosing the right auger bit:
The Material You Are Cutting
The most important part of the equation is what are you drilling into? For example, rock augers are designed to cut into rock while a soil auger is better designed for cutting through the soil.
You’ll need to assess what you are cutting in order to get the right auger bit.
However, this is also where it starts to get complicated. The ground where you are digging may not be made up of the same material all the way to the depth you need. If you are drilling relatively deep it’s a good idea to work out what you are drilling into. 3D mapping can be very useful for this.
You’ll then know if you start off with soft soil and move into solid rock or some other compound.
Once you understand what you are cutting and the approximate depths, you’ll be able to order the auger bits you need to drill the different materials. In other words, you may need more than one type of auger bit.
Size of Hole
Naturally, when choosing an auger bit you need to know what size of hole you wish to dig. Auger bits range in size from as little as a few centimeters to as much as 1.2m! Choosing the right one for your job is essential if you want a hole that is neither too big nor too small.
Of course, you should also consider the likelihood of an auger bit getting stuck or broken. This is generally rare but is possible. You’ll need to know that you can get a spare bit quickly if necessary. If this isn’t possible then keeping a spare handy is a good idea.
Small augers can be powered with a handheld drill. Larger augers use an independent power source that can be carried around with the auger. This can be heavy. These power sources can be made for electricity or gas.
The largest auger bits will need heavy-duty equipment, such as a JCB to turn the bit and give it the power it needs to cut through the ground.
You need to consider what power options you have available for a specific job and then choose the right auger bit based on what power you have available.
You should note that, just like drilling into a wall, it is sometimes necessary to make an initial hole with a smaller auger bit and then expand it to the correct size with another one.
Training / Experience
When you start using a heavy-duty large auger bit you need to have the training and experience that ensures you can do so safely. That means the auger bit will be properly fastened and the speed at which it drills will be controlled to prevent issues.
A well-trained auger operator will know the limit of the power source and how the auger feels. This will help to ensure they don’t overload it or get it stuck. Both of these scenarios can be expensive and time-consuming. That’s something you don’t need on any job.
There is a big difference between the space you have to operate an auger bit when creating new homes versus making a hole in an existing garden.
This illustrates the importance of assessing the space before you order an auger bit. You need to know that you can get the power source into the right place to support the auger bit. If not, then you’ll need to choose a smaller auger and decide the best technique to widen or deepen the hole.
Check out the entry points to confirm whether your JCB will fit or if you need to consider an alternative power source and a smaller auger.
Hire Instead Of Buying
You may be tempted to purchase an auger bit for the job you are doing. However, you need to consider how often you are likely to use the auger bit. If the answer is just once or twice then it is more practical and cost-effective to simply hire the auger you need.
There are plenty of specialists that can help you decide the size and the material you are cutting, as well as providing an auger bit and a spare if you need it. All you have to do is contact the professionals in rock augers and they will take you through the entire process.
When taking an auger bit for a job make sure your insurance company is aware and has adequate cover in place to cover any issues you may face. This will ensure you and your workers are properly certified and can work in confidence.
Don’t forget, an auger bit is a lot easier and less disruptive than many ways of digging. Whenever you are asked to create a hole consider the depth and size of the hole needed, an auger bit may be the best item for the job. It is certainly worth considering to make your life easier, and potentially reduce the cost of the work.