How Much Does a Skid Steer Backhoe Attachment Cost?
If you had to buy a separate piece of heavy equipment for every task you face on a jobsite, you'd be up to your eyes in debt. Luckily, a good skid steer loader is incredibly versatile, with dozens of attachments available to handle pretty much any project need. One of the more popular is a backhoe attachment, which costs only a fraction of the price of a mini excavator or backhoe loader.
A backhoe attachment turns your skid steer into a mini digger capable of a variety of tasks, depending on the capabilities of both your loader and the attachment you choose. Dig out basements, drainage ditches, footings, pipe trenches, and more, using nothing more than your track loader and backhoe attachment. You can even add more oomph to your equipment with a hydraulic-powered attachment, further increasing your excavation capabilities.
Backhoe Attachment Maintenance and Skid Steer Versatility
Even though you pay less for a skid steer with multiple attachments than you do for multiple pieces of heavy equipment, it's still an investment. Proper maintenance is vital toward protecting that investment.
The pivot points on a backhoe attachment require regular lubrication, either daily or after every eight hours of use (choose the more frequent option). Pivot points include the boom, bucket, dipper, and swing.
Your skid steer was built to adapt to whatever environment you need it. Machines as narrow as 36" are available, giving you the ability to move it through nearly any gate, whether commercial, municipal, or residential. Their adaptability allows you to go from excavator to compactor to grader, just by changing your attachments.
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Types of Backhoe Attachments and Pricing
Operation and control play a large role in how backhoe attachments are categorized and priced. For example, with a boom control backhoe, the operator uses the skid steer's levers to work the backhoe attachment. Typically, these are saved for lighter duty jobs, since breakout force and arm reach are limited. Operation of the bucket curl uses a single-cylinder design that doesn't overtax the unit's hydraulic system, requiring only 11 to 22 GPM. An attachment with an 8" bucket starts at around $1,800. As bucket size increases, so does price.
In-cab controls operate the swing option, which moves the backhoe attachment left and right. You'll pay around $3,000 for a 12" bucket without the swing option and between $5,000 and $5,500 for the same backhoe with swing.
For greater versatility, look for backhoe attachments with discrete controls. Some may be operated from within the cab and others from outside it. Operating pattern options include ISO and SAE. They typically cost around $12,000, which is a bit harder on your bank account but, to many, the extra price is worth it due to their greater versatility.
Buckets controlled outside of the cab require the operator to be seated on the attachment itself (the external seat is part of the attachment). Controls are the same as found on an excavator and dig depth typically falls within the 10' to 11' feet range.
Other options include:
- Boom attachments
- Buckets in sizes ranging from 8" to 40"
- Vertical stabilizers
- Stabilizer pads
Pricing for these items ranges from around $2,000 to around $7,000.
Skid Steer Backhoe Attachment Pricing
Exact pricing varies dramatically based on a variety of factors. Bucket size, dig depth, vendor, and manufacturer are just a few of the variables contributing to the cost. The following should give you a good idea of the prices you can expect to see and help you budget.
- Blue Diamond attachment without bucket, 6' dig depth, price range: $1,800 to $2,200
- Blue Diamond 12" bucket, price range: $600 to $800
- Blue Diamond 18" bucket, price range: $800 to $900
- Bobcat Titan, 16" bucket excavator attachment, price range: $1,200 to $1,400
- Spartan E-Z Digger attachment with swing arm, 7' dig depth, swing arc 45 degrees left and 35 degrees right, price range: $3,500 to $4,500
- Spartan mini backhoe attachment, stiff arm, 50" dig depth, price range: $2,000 to $2,500
- Spartan 485, 180-degree swing rotation, adjustable high-back seat, swing speed control, 8'5" dig depth, price range: $8,750 to $9,250
- Spartan 509, 180-degree swing rotation, adjustable high-back seat, swing speed control, 9'8" dig depth, price range: $10,000 to $11,000
- Spartan 611, adjustable high-back seat, swing speed control, full 180-degree rotation, 12'1" dig depth, price range: $14,000 to $15,000
- Triple S Power attachment, dual cylinder swing, 180-degree rotation, 9'4" maximum dig depth, price range: $10,000 to $11,000