Common construction equipment and why malfunctions occur

Many different things can cause construction accidents, but equipment malfunction is one of the most common causes.

All equipment must be in good working order when construction workers use heavy machinery. If something goes wrong with the machinery, it can easily lead to an accident. In this article we look at some of the most common causes of malfunction and accidents.

Are workers being exploited? 

Construction workers are some of the most vulnerable employees in the United States. They frequently work long hours in dangerous conditions for little pay. Some construction workers are paid as little as $5 an hour, and many do not have health insurance. Which is a liability in case of serious construction injuries

Working in construction is notoriously dangerous. In 2017, there were 991 fatal occupational injuries in construction, more than in any other industry. Common causes of construction worker injuries include falls, being struck by an object, and electrocutions.

Getting exposed to toxins and chemicals

Equipment malfunctions cause many construction worker injuries. Defective ladders, power tools, and scaffolding can cause serious injuries or even death. When workers are injured due to defective equipment, they may be able to file a personal injury lawsuit against the manufacturer or another responsible party. 

Construction workers face several workplace hazards, including exposure to toxins and bacteria. For example, construction workers who work on sewer and water lines are exposed to sewage and wastewater. 

Back pain injuries among workers due to heavy equipment

Construction workers are susceptible to back pain injuries due to heavy equipment daily. The most common type of construction equipment is the forklift, which can weigh up to 8,000 pounds when fully loaded. Other heavy equipment used in construction include excavators, bulldozers, and cranes. Work-related back injuries can occur when this equipment malfunctions and workers cannot brace themselves properly. 

Improper lifting techniques are also a common cause of back pain injuries among construction workers. To avoid these injuries, construction workers must use proper lifting techniques and be aware of their surroundings when working with heavy equipment. 

The critical role of hydraulic components 

Hydraulic systems are pivotal in operating construction equipment like excavators and backhoes. These systems depend on various components, such as hoses, pumps, valves, cylinders, and seals, to function smoothly.

A malfunction in any of these components can lead to significant equipment failures. For instance, a hydraulic hose failure can cause fluid leaks, resulting in a loss of pressure and power. 
Similarly, compromised hydraulic pumps and valves can lead to inefficient operations or complete system failures, disrupting construction. 

Choosing high-quality hydraulic components from reputable providers is essential for ensuring the safety and efficiency of construction equipment. 

Quality hydraulic hoses and parts, such as robust cylinders and reliable seals, reduce the risk of malfunctions, thereby minimizing potential accidents and equipment downtime. For example, a well-made hydraulic hose from a reliable hose shop can withstand the high-pressure demands of construction equipment, ensuring smoother and safer operations. 

Furthermore, selecting the right provider provides access to expert advice and support, which is critical for maintaining and troubleshooting hydraulic systems. In summary, investing in reliable hydraulic components from trusted sources is crucial for preserving construction equipment’s functionality and the safety of the workers.


Excavators are one of the most important equipments on a construction site. But, like all machines, they’re susceptible to malfunctions. The most common problems include:

  • Engine problems are perhaps the most common type of issue with excavators. Over time, engines can accumulate dirt and debris, leading to decreased performance and engine failure. 
  • Hydraulic problems are also relatively common and can be caused by leaks or blockages in the system. 
  • Track problems can be caused by various things, including wear and tear, misalignment, or damage from objects on the construction site.

To ensure productivity, you might want to use John Deere excavators for your construction projects. These excavators are reliable and trusted by many.


Standard construction equipment such as forklifts is essential in any construction site. These powerful machines are used for heavy lifting and transporting materials, making them a crucial component in construction. However, malfunctions can occur unexpectedly, causing delays and potential safety hazards. 

One of the primary reasons for these malfunctions is the need for forklift repairs. As these machines are constantly being used, wear and tear can occur, leading to issues that require professional maintenance. Maintaining regular and service forklifts is crucial to prevent costly and time-consuming breakdowns on the construction site.


One of the most common pieces of construction equipment is the backhoe. While backhoes are incredibly versatile and can be used for various tasks, they are also susceptible to several problems.

The engine is one of the most common areas where problems can occur. Notoriously finicky diesel engines typically power backhoes. Diesel engines can be difficult to start in cold weather, requiring regular maintenance to keep them running properly.

Hydraulics is another common area of concern for backhoes. The hydraulic system is responsible for operating the backhoe’s bucket and arm; any issues can cause major problems. Hydraulic leaks are particularly concerning, as they can lead to losing power and control over the backhoe’s movements. 

Dump trucks

Dump trucks are one of the most common construction equipment items and can be very useful for various tasks. However, dump trucks can also experience several problems, including issues with the engine, brakes, and tires.

One of the most common problems with dump trucks is that the engine can overheat. This is often due to a build-up of debris in the radiator or a leak in the cooling system. If the engine overheats, it can cause serious damage to the truck and may even result in a fire. 

Another problem that can occur with dump trucks is brake failure. This is usually caused by a leak in the hydraulic system or worn-out brake pads. If the brakes fail, it can be difficult to stop the truck, leading to accidents

Make sure your equipment is safe

Construction workers use a variety of equipment daily to complete their tasks. While this equipment is generally reliable, malfunctions can and do occur. When they do, it is important to address them quickly and efficiently to avoid any potential injuries. This why monthly equipment and construction tool maintenance is suggested to prevent future disasters and protect your employees from unprecedented accidents

Regular maintenance is the best way to prevent construction equipment from malfunctioning and fix them before they cause serious issues.