What is Hydro-Excavation?

Hydro excavation (vacuum excavation) is the safest available method for digging near utilities and underground services. It is safer than a shovel and much faster, increasing efficiency!

One of the most dangerous factors of any excavation project is the complex network of pipes, wires, cables, etc. that lie below the surface. This vital underground infrastructure carries such things as electricity, gas and water, and gives life to everything above ground. Thus, whenever excavation work is performed on a project, it must be done in such a cautious manner so that the network is not disrupted. After the underground service locations have been electronically identified excavation work is either done by conventional machinery or using shovels to dig by hand. Unfortunately, when the project takes place in sensitive areas where there are utility lines running in various directions, conventional machinery is usually too cumbersome and the risk of severing one of the lines is quite high. Typically, the only other method to use in these areas or tight spaces is to hand dig using picks and shovels.

Hydro excavation is a non-mechanical and non-destructive process which combines pressurised water and a high flow of moving air (a vacuum) to simultaneously excavate and evacuate native soils at a controlled rate. The soil and water slurry are conveyed by vacuum via a “sucker tube” to a truck-mounted debris tank. Our vacuum excavation trucks are completely self-contained, meaning the excavated soil is deposited directly into the debris tank. This clean and environmentally friendly method of excavation protects the surrounding area, and when the excavation is complete, the area is immediately ready for inspection. This process allows for quick, clean and precise excavations which require less backfill, less labour force, less restoration, and less environmental impact than conventional digging methods.

A controlled flow, low-volume high pressure water stream allows for surgeon-like cutting accuracy. This process removes only the amount of material necessary for repair or inspection, minimal material needs to be removed when compared with the large, less-than-accurate excavator or back hoe bucket.
Other uses of Hydro-Excavation are:

  • Depth gauge for excavator sight.
• Uncover – Pipelines, Phone lines and fibre optics.
• Excavation for Poles (power) & Signs.
• Foundation hole & Auger hole vacuuming.
• Hard to access digging where conventional excavating can’t be concluded.
• Replacing the shovel.
• Tree root guard channels for root barriers.
• Tree planting holes.
• Mature tree removal, relocation & hole digging.
It dramatically reduces the risk of personal injury and death from cutting & opening services.

Damage Prevention
Avoid the financial liabilities, inconvenience to service users and embarrassment to companies by cutting underground services.

"RSP Environmental Services vacuum up everything we excavate & leave your site clean"