Vibratory plate compactors are designed for use on granular soil in trenches, parking lots and driveways. They have the power and durability for large, flat work areas such as repairing streets, backfilling trenches and preparing sites for asphalt or concrete. Plate compactors complete jobs fast and are ergonomic for increased productivity and operator comfort. United Rentals has a fleet of vibratory compactors with various weights and impact forces for your jobsite needs.
Learn more about our plate compactors in our FAQ section below.
Before choosing a compactor, you must know what soil type you will be compacting. Plate compactors work best on granular soils such as gravel, sand or light asphalt. If you are working with soil with clay or silt content, a compactor with higher-impact force will be more productive because those materials are not easily compacted with vibration. Even if you use a compactor with high-impact force for your site, you can experiment with lift thickness to ensure good compaction without cracking. Learn more in our article How to Choose a Plate Compactor.
Vibratory plate compactors are ideal for granular soils such as gravel, sand, stone, dust and 2A aggregates (sandy gravel). Their vibrations move the particles of soil together for higher-density compaction. They can also compact soil with some clay content or asphalt, perfect for finishing the top layer of backfilled trenches. However, a roller or jumping jack rammer compactor would be a better fit for deep compacting if you are working with a high-clay or high-silt content material.
Jumping jack rammer compactors are narrower, and they have increased impact force. They are ideal for high-clay or high-silt (cohesive) soils and high-moisture soil. The rammer compactor is best if you need to compact the material in a narrow trench or around utility pipes. The plate compactor is the right choice if you need to compact a large, flat area with granular soil. Instead of relying on impact force, the plate compactor vibrates, moving the soil particles closer together, resulting in high-density compaction. However, the jumping jack and plate compactor work well together: Use the plate compactor to prep the area, the jumping jack to compact the cohesive soil and the plate compactor to finish. You can learn more about the different types of compacting solutions in our article, Choosing the Right Roller or Compactor for Your Project.