Do you think you want to be a paving contractor? If you enjoy being outdoors, are not bothered by traffic whizzing by you and are not intimidated by using equipment that can be two stories tall, then perhaps you will be one of the latest to enter the field of paving contractors.
As a paving contractor, you might work in the commercial arena, the residential arena or both. Don’t assume that just because they are both called a paving contractor that they do the same thing using the same equipment. In the commercial arena, you will be bidding for the job against others. If you win, usually this is the lowest bid of all the paving contractors, you’ll be reporting to the construction manager or general contractor. You might be pouring concrete for a parking lot, sidewalks or the ground floor for a new development. As a residential paving contractor, you’ll be working for the owner of the property. In this situation, you may find yourself pouring concrete for a driveway, a patio, a walkway or tiles leading to the back yard.
The machines used a big – think huge sometimes. You’ve probably already seen them in action along the road or on your neighbor’s property. First in is an excavator. This machine will prepare the land for paving. The surface is readied next. Once dirt and/or gravel has been laid down, you’ll see a tamping machine come in to help flatten it out. After that, a paving machine comes in to make it all smooth. And during the whole process, a dump truck is collecting and disposing of excess waste and dirt. These are also used to haul in the surface substrate.
If you’re the type that doesn’t mind busy, noisy and dirty conditions, you might find it helpful to approach other paving contractors and ask if you could spend a day with them out in the field. After this, if the career still excites you, ask them for advice on how to follow your chosen career path and happy paving!