Ask Your Mates Open Forum

Average Grader Annual hours

  • 1.  Average Grader Annual hours

    Posted 18 October 2013 21:05
    Good morning all, I would to canvas rural Shires, Councils to ask what sort of yearly hours that you achieve from your construction and maintenance graders. this given that there are 1800 - 1900 hours available.
    I am very keen to see what others see as "normal/average" usage hours.

    Garry McGraw
    Shire of Gnowangerup
    Gnowangerup WAau


  • 2.  RE:Average Grader Annual hours

    Posted 19 October 2013 00:16

    Pyrenees averages 500 - 800 hours on our graders a year. We are struggling to justify our fleet of two construction and two maintenance graders based on hours.

    However with the set levels of service and 1200 km of unsealed network to maintain we believe we would struggle with any less.

    It's a very difficult balancing act for our plant justification and budgeting.

    Robert Ladd
    Manager Engineering, Waste Operations and Contracts
    Pyrenees Shire Council


    Sent via IPWEA Mobile Application


  • 3.  RE:Average Grader Annual hours

    Posted 20 October 2013 17:38

    Cooma Monaro operate three graders that achieve averaged operating hours over three years of 1043, 911, 1090 per annum. These figures are around benchmark utilisation of 1000hrs per annum.
    There are a lot of variables to take into account within local government that make it nearly impossible to achieve 1900hrs.


    Stuart Sturgeon
    Fleet Manager
    Cooma Monaro Shire Council


  • 4.  RE:Average Grader Annual hours

    Posted 20 October 2013 19:49
    Thanks to all, it appears that somewhere between 1000 and 1300 seems to be good utilisation. I currently have 4 graders and the average hours is about 600 so trying to understand are we over equipped or under staffed . we have 1200kms of unsealed roads.

    thanks again.
    thought to all the NSW LG people, wish we could send you some rain
    Garry McGraw
    Gnowangerup Shire Council
    Gnowangerup WA au



  • 5.  RE:Average Grader Annual hours

    Posted 21 October 2013 21:55
    Both Garry and Stuart may be right to query the number of hours achievable per grader, but the more appropriate asset management question is "do we have the right plant and does it need to be operated for that time to achieve the require outcomes?" and "can we do it another way?".
    A similar small council in NZ used to own and operate 3 graders (at about 1000hrs each pa), but after a review of the grading practices decided they only needed 1 and occasionally to hire a second, with consequent significant savings in capital, salary and operating costs.  15 years later all the work has been contracted out and the current contractor uses 1.2 graders on the network (the other 0.8 grader is on the adjacent network) and is achieving close to 1900hr pa machine hours.

    The benefits were gained from upskilling the operators in best-grading practice, and concentrating on grading only when needed, rather than on a predetermined routine regardless.

    Peter Ollivier
    Senior Principal
    Spiire NZ Ltd
    Wellington, NZ



  • 6.  RE:Average Grader Annual hours

    Posted 20 October 2013 19:26
    Hello Gary,

    Our anticipated usage for most of our earthmoving equipment; backhoes, graders, excavators etc is based on 65% of 2080 available time sheet hours. In other words, our target utilisation figures for these machines amount to1352 hours annually or 113 hours monthly. Utiliisation is monitored on a monthly basis to ensure that we receive adequate income through actual timesheet hours.

    The IPWEA industry benchmark utilisation is 1000 engine hours per year. 

    Pat Whymark
    Fleet Plant Hire Coordinator
    Gosford City Council



  • 7.  RE:Average Grader Annual hours

    Posted 21 October 2013 21:44
    Bourke Shire Council in NSW run a 50 hour week system that does a great job in maximising grader efficiency. Essentially, the Grader Operators work three weeks on and one week off. On their off week, another operator is on that machine hence the machine isn't working the same monthly roster as a single operator.

    In my experience when I was the Director in Bourke, Annual Grader hours were very high up around the levels you are talking.

    Please note that the 50 hour week also brought along a few problems such as a perception of inequality in the workplace between different staff. Overall though I would say it was very effective in maximising production.  Any Council contemplating this though needs to be prepared to drop total machine numbers, and a number of staff due to the increased efficiency of the individual graders.

    I encourage you to contact Council's current Works Manager Mark Gordon, and he can give you some more specific information on the pros and cons of this system. It was implemented about 15 years ago or thereabouts. I assume it's still in place but not sure.


    Sean Rice
    Managing Director
    Rice Project Management Services



  • 8.  RE:Average Grader Annual hours

    Posted 23 October 2013 05:40

    Hi all,

    We do not have the kilometres of Bourke (thankfully). However for over a decade now we've operated our grading team based on the following:
    - grader
    - roller
    - water cart - contract
    - labourer

    Ccl crew works four days per week. Machinery works five days a week. Team starts and finishes on the job. Arrangements increased productivity from less than 30hiurs effective time grading to about 45hours per week. Outcome we now have one grader looking after 430km of unsealed roads.

    We've also modified our resheeting specification, established a gravel road hierarchy with differing levels of service, changed our standards of cross fall (now 6 percent minimum)and modified grading practise with good success.

    Warren Sharpe
    Eurobodalla Shire Council



  • 9.  RE:Average Grader Annual hours

    Posted 20 October 2013 19:27
    Rockhampton Regional is a mix of Urban & Rural population and this would affect our use but utilisation across 12 graders is as follows:

    Timesheet recovery average: 1070 hrs/yr  (850 - 1350 range)

    Actual engine run use average:  1010hrs/yr (700 - 1250 range)

    Michael Borg
    Operations Manager, Fleet Services
    Rockhampton Regional Council



  • 10.  RE:Average Grader Annual hours

    Posted 20 October 2013 19:48
      |   view attached
              I have attached a utilization report for my 3 graders ,the construction gradrs currently do a little less than 1000 hrs p.a. and the maintenance around about 1200 p.a..The construction season for us is about 7 months due to wet weather we have had a late start this year .

    Russell Pratt
    Workshop Supervisor
    Shire of Augusta-Margaret River



    Utilisationgraders.PDF   2K 1 version

  • 11.  RE:Average Grader Annual hours

    Posted 21 October 2013 22:03
    At Tamworth we have GPS tracking on our grader fleet, so have pretty good data on what the machines are doing.
    We were averaging just under 1,000 hours on our maintenance graders, but had our guys starting and finishing at the Depot - so there was a lot of productive working time lost travelling to and from the site.

    By changing our working arrangements (the guys now travel outside of normal working hours) we are now averaging just under 1,200 hours on our maintenance graders. This has allowed us to drop a crew, save a few hundred thousand dollars (after we pay the travel costs), without reducing the level of service.

    It is tricky to get a similar result when you only have a small number of machines (a 20% increase in hours on 2 machines will not allow you to reduce the fleet).

    Overall, I think that 1,800 hours is unachievable without extending the working hours and signficantly increasing you labour cost (which can still be cost effective, and could be worth another discussion topic in its own right!). There will always be down time associated with startup, shut down, traffic control, safety meetings, training, etc, - so unless you increase the available working hours, the machine hours will be limited.

    Murray Russell
    Manager Operational Services
    Tamworth Regional Council