Using Auger Rentals to Dig Holes Faster
If you need to build a fence, or create a deck frame, then an auger rental will make your project go significantly faster. With a power auger, you can dig up to 30 holes in a day, and you can ensure that the size and shape of those holes is uniform and consistent.
The power auger is a large, gas-fueled tool with a screw running up the outside of a pipe-like core. As the auger moves into the ground, the dirt is carried up the screw with each rotation. You can dig 4-, 6-, 8-, or 12-inch diameter holes, up the 3 feet deep with a standard auger, and up to four feet deep with an extension rod.
To ensure that you do not drill into any utility cables, you need to contact your electric, phone, and cable companies to find out if they have buried cables on your property. If they do, then have them send someone out to mark where they are. Typically the city or utility company will come out and mark these for free. Skipping this step will, at minimum, lead to an inconvenience if you hit phone or cable lines, and at worst will cause serious injury or death if you hit electrical lines.
It is also a good idea to carefully map out your holes before you begin digging. Changing the location or position of holes once you have begun is nearly impossible. Mark the center of each hole with a stake. Once you are sure about the location and spacing of your holes, dig a pilot hole with a spade or shovel. This will provide a starting point for your auger.
Most projects will require at least a 6 inch drill, but you get more flexibility with an 8 or 12 inch drill. This size auger requires two people to operate, and even then it will be quite a bit of work. The larger the drill size, the stronger the torque, and it is the operators' job to counter the torque.
As you drill your holes, you will need to shut off the auger and remove the dirt after every 12 inches or so; any longer and it will be too heavy to lift. Dump the dirt on the grass or use a tarp to protect your lawn. If your next hole is only a few feet away, feel free to leave the auger on as you move it; otherwise, shut it off first.
Operating a power auger is hard work, but it is worth it for the time you save.