The 4 Most Reliable Dump Trucks in Construction

Many of our projects will need dump trucks to get the work done. Dump trucks are used to move aggregates from one point to another and using the hydraulic components to lift up the rear contents so it can fall to the ground.

These trucks are available in many configurations and sizes, so here we are presenting the dump truck equipment commonly used in the construction industry. Always remember to check your federal and state weight restrictions or frost prohibitions when selecting your dump truck.

Off-Road Dump Trucks

Off Road Truck

AlfvanBeem [CC0]/Wikimedia Commons

Also known as articulated trucks, off-roads are big trucks used essentially for mining operations or in situations where large amounts of aggregate needs to be hauled. Their big size and heavy load makes them ideal for off-road situations (rough terrain) and not recommended for being used over roads or developed areas. Also, they are among the best when hauling long distances. They are capable of handling loads up to 60 tons. Articulated dump trucks have a hinge between the cab and the bed box. 

Transfer Dump Truck

Photo Wikicommons

Transfer dump trucks are trucks pulled by a separate trailer. The main characteristic of transfer dump trucks is that the separate trailer has a movable cargo container. This configuration will maximize loads capacity without losing maneuverability.

The separate container is powered by an electric motor mounted on the tractor that travels on wheels rolling into the trailer frame of the main dump truck. There is a variation of a transfer dump truck allowing you to add other cargo containers to the main truck. Be careful, as this type of configuration is not allowed in all states due to weight restrictions.

Side Dump Trucks

Side dump truck

Side dump trucks are among the fastest dump trucks to unload. They have one of the largest capacities of these types of trucks, and they have the characteristic that it will tilt to the side to dump the material to the ground.

They offer safety against tipping over, but because of their length, they have limited maneuverability. Due to this characteristic, these trucks cannot always be used and they are preferred in projects on which the site has plenty of space to maneuver. Side dump trucks will carry less volume of a load than traditional standard dump trucks.

Standard Dump Truck

Dump truck

Ky MacPherson/Wikimedia Commons 

The regular dump truck is the most common one used in the construction industry. The dump chassis is lifted by a hydraulic ram mounted between the cab and the truck body. It has one front axle and one or more rear axles. The common configurations for standard dump trucks include the six-wheeler and ten-wheeler. They offer great maneuverability, however, they can not be used over soft soils.

Other Dump Trucks

Belly Dump Trailer

Ky MacPherson/Wikimedia Commons 

There are other dump truck configurations, though they're not as common as the previous ones. These are some additional dump truck types:

  • Truck and Pup: Very similar to a transfer dump truck but it differentiates by having its own hydraulic ram. It is capable of stand-alone dumping.
  • Superdump Truck: A unique dump truck capable of carrying large loads. The Superdump truck is particularly useful for asphalt and concrete paving applications.
  • Semi-trailer end dump truck: A side dump truck where the two-axle trailer has its own hydraulic hoist.
  • Semi-trailer bottom dump truck: Similar to the semi-trailer end dump truck where the dump feature is a clamshell dump gate in the center-bottom of the trailer. The biggest advantage of a semi bottom dump truck is the ability to lay material in a specific location and narrow areas.
  • Double and triple trailer bottom dump truck: Consists of a two-axle tractor pulling a single-axle semi-trailer and one or two full trailers. The biggest disadvantage is the difficulty in going in reverse.

The configuration of all of these alternatives and the previous ones discussed will change from country to country, depending on regulations and restrictions. There are many other types of dump trucks but these four are the ones preferred by professional drivers and construction pros.