Underground power lines, stormwater drains, irrigation, sewage, telecommunication, fibre optic lines and so much more lies beneath our feet. To go in with a digger could up damaging any of these systems or causing a fatal accident.

What is a vac truck?

A Hydrovac Truck (also known as a sucker truck, sewer sucker or hydro truck) is a tank truck equipped with a high-pressure water jet, pneumatic vacuum and tank for excavation purposes. The high-pressure jet breaks down the surrounding fill (soil, clay, gravel etc.) for the pump to suck the liquids, sludges and all things alike, from the site (usually underground) into the tank of the truck. Once the truck is full, the truck takes the waste load and empties out at a treatment facility or waste site.

What industries use them?

I’m sure we’ve all heard the term “Safety First”, though so few have heard the term Vacuum Excavation. With more and more infrastructure being put in place such as the NBN, large organisations like Telstra jump at the chance to perform their excavations safer (and more cost-effective). Below is a list of industries that utilise Hydrovac Trucks.

Horizontal Directional Drilling (HDD)

Also known as Directional Boring, HDD is a method used to install underground cable, conduits and pipes. This task involves drilling horizontally with minimal surface disruption as opposed to drilling straight down. As Hydrovac Excavation is suitable for a wide variety of soil conditions (sand, clay, mud etc.) and when needing to pass under roads, rivers and other landscapes.

Utility Location Services

As mentioned above, just before cables, conduits and pipes are laid, it is paramount that existing services are located.

As Hydrovacac Excavation is a safer environmental alternative than traditional methods and for the safety of their employees, contractors do not waste time when it comes to Utility Location Services. Vacuum Excavation reduces the risk of damaging underground services by using a high-pressure water jet and soil vacuum. Utility Location Service contractors can ensure their employees are going home and the job can be done without the risk of a utility outage such as burst water lines or worse, gas explosions. Hydrovac Excavations can also help in the maintenance and repairs of existing services.


Mining occurs across an extensive range of terrain, soil, clay or gravel to name a few. Mechanical Excavation is not only an unsafe option but also not near as cost effective. The metal claws on the digger buckets ware out over time, needing replacement, involving downtime and labour costs. Mechanical Excavation does not match the efficiency of Hydro Excavation in numerous areas, this is why more industries like the mining industry, are turning to the alternative use of Hydrovac Trucks.

Liquid Waste Removal

Depending on the type of liquid waste, this can be a very dangerous process resulting in harm to animals, humans and the environment. Vacuum excavation is considered a more advanced way of Liquid Waste removal. Hydro Excavation is a very clean and very safe process. With the liquid being securely removed and stored in the truck, the chance of the contaminated substance being swept onto the ground or into waterways is eliminated. Once in the truck, the liquid is then transported to a facility to be treated for the correct way of disposal or recycling.

Pot & Post Hole Digging

Installation holes for post’s & poles have varying factors such as the depth and diameter. The days of manual labour and a blunt shovel are gone thanks to Hydrovac Excavation Trucks. The high-pressure jet provides an accurate hole for the installation of the pole. There is less waste, mess and chance of an injury. It is far more time and cost-effective, benefiting the client and the labourer.


Often after a flood or runoff, drains and sewers can be blocked with soil and debris. By breaking the debris down and sucking it out for removal all at once, the two in one service Hydrovac Trucks offer is the ideal tool to get the job done.

Hydrovac or Vacuum Excavation Trucks are quickly becoming the go-to method for most forms of excavation. It is a safer, environmentally friendly, more efficient and cost-effective than traditional excavation methods.

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