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Gardeners have long understood the importance of using a wheelbarrow to lift heavy loads. If you have ever struggled to lift a load of materials around your yard while outside, you know that especially if it is bulky (like moving wood) or never-ending (like mulch) that there is just no good way to carry it in your arms, buckets, or other makeshift techniques. Would it be easier to lift the load in a wheelbarrow?

Yes, loads are easier to lift in a wheelbarrow because they are designed to distribute the weight of their load evenly between the front wheel and the person pushing the wheelbarrow. This means the use of a wheelbarrow will make the carrying of heavy loads much easier and more convenient.

There are many elements of science that go into the understanding of carrying heavy loads. Read on to find out how you can make your life of yard work much easier by utilizing a wheelbarrow to lift heavy loads.

Picture of a Red Wheelbarrow - Is It Easier to Lift a Load in a Wheelbarrow

Can I Use a Wheelbarrow to Make My Yard Work Easier?

If you are the kind of person who loves to work in the yard, but is always dropping tools, flower pots, bags of soil or bags of mulch, and the like, there must be a better way. Whenever you need to carry things from Point A to Point B, a wheelbarrow can do the job for you. Consolidate your load in one place by using a wheelbarrow, and your burden will be much easier to carry.

Wheelbarrows use the science of compound machines to multiply your force as you lift, and will therefore make your work much easier when trying to carry soil, mulch, gardening pots, or wood in your yard. The combination of two simple machines will help you lift your gardening objects with ease. 

Is a Wheelbarrow a Compound Machine?

Yes, simply put, a wheelbarrow is a compound machine. In order to understand how a wheelbarrow works and how it will help you lift a load more easily, you will need to understand how machines work. A simple machine is a mechanical device that changes the direction and magnitude of a force. These simple machines can be used to your advantage in multiplying force, therefore making jobs easier while using the machine.

In the case of a wheelbarrow, two simple machines are combined to form a compound machine, which can make working in your yard a much more efficient undertaking. In a wheelbarrow, the wheel, axle, and lever combine to make carrying heavy, bulky loads possible. Because they work together, when you apply the force to the wheelbarrow they change the force you exert to get the job done more efficiently.

What Are the Primary Parts of a Wheelbarrow?

There are two primary parts of a wheelbarrow. First, there is a simple machine known as a wheel and axle. The wheel and axle is a simple machine that manipulates force to make work easier. The wheel is a round disk, and the axle is a rod that pushes through the center of it. This setup uses momentum and torque to do work on objects, and this simple machine is related to a gear.

In the case of a wheelbarrow, the wheel is at the front, and is generally 10 times larger than the axle. This means that the axle will work ten times harder but only travel 1/10th of the distance. Using the fulcrum of the wheel at the front, you are able to carry a heavy load with the handles at the back of the wheelbarrow.

The other part of the wheelbarrow is the lever, which helps you to lift large weights with a smaller amount of effort. the handles are used to lift the load, and these help you to balance the load as well as you lift. The whole wheelbarrow itself acts as a fulcrum.

Image showing a wheelbarrow labeled as effort, load, and fulcrum - Is It Easier to Lift a Load in a WheelbarrowIf you lift the handles properly as stated above, you can utilize these two machines in tandem, which will make your load much easier to lift.

How Does a Wheelbarrow Work?

A machine has the ability to change the force applied to it to make your work easier, and a wheelbarrow is no different. With a compound machine like a wheelbarrow, you receive a greater advantage, because the greater number of simple machines working together, the easier the work will be.

Although the wheelbarrow seems like a piece of simple equipment, it can do the important work of carrying a large, bulky load with minimal effort. Because of its design, you can conveniently carry a bulky or heavy load of gardening tools, bricks, logs, mulch, flower pots, or even a combination! As you pick up the handles, you are in effect applying effort to the lever.

This in turn will help the wheel start turning. Meanwhile, while the wheel is rolling, the axle will increase the force and make it much easier for you to push the load. Because all of the parts of this compound machine work together, you will have a much simpler job of moving this heavy load in your yard.

Final Thoughts

When you are working around the outside of your house, many of the tools and supplies you need to carry in order to do your work are not only heavy, but awkward. If you choose to carry them in a wheelbarrow, you can use the force of the compound machine in order to do the work for you. With a wheel and axle, as well as a lever, your energy is distributed more evenly and the work is done more efficiently. This makes it much easier to lift a load when you are using a wheelbarrow.

For More On Wheelbarrows See Also

What is the Best Wheelbarrow to Buy

How Many Wheelbarrows in a Cord of Wood

Will a Wheelbarrow Fit in a Sedan, Minivan, or SUV

How Much Sand Does A Wheelbarrow Hold (How Much Does It Weigh)

How Much Concrete Can You Get (or Mix) in a Wheelbarrow