How Much Is a Dump Truck Load of Sand?

A dump truckload of sand typically costs between $300 and $700, including delivery. The cost will vary depending on the load size and the sand type. For instance, river sand is usually pricier than arena sand or play sand. Fill sand, and all-purpose construction sand typically fall in the middle range. When pricing dump truck loads of sand, ask about delivery charges to obtain an accurate estimate.


Truckload Pricing for Topsoil

Topsoil is the uppermost layer of soil, about 6 to 12 inches deep. It supports plant growth by providing essential minerals, organic matter, and other materials. A truckload of topsoil usually ranges between 10 and 13 cubic yards, with a price range of $150 to $450, according to HomeAdvisor. However, the cost may be higher due to topsoil’s importance in supporting plant growth.

Truckload Capacity for Sand, Dirt, and Gravel

Large dump trucks can carry about 28,000 pounds, equivalent to around 14 tons of sand. Smaller dump trucks have a maximum capacity of about 15,000 pounds or 7.5 tons. A standard dump truck can carry 10 to 14 cubic yards of dirt, delivering 14 SuperSacks simultaneously. If your project requires 32 cubic yards of dirt, expect to receive three truckloads that cost between $150 to $200 each. A pickup truck can hold up to two cubic yards of sand, while a dump truck or trailer is recommended for larger loads.

Types of Soil: Fill Dirt vs. Topsoil

Fill dirt consists mainly of sand, clay, and small rocks, lacking nutrients and unsuitable for growing plants. It is used to level out land or fill in holes. On the other hand, topsoil contains essential minerals, organic matter, and a higher concentration of clay than fill dirt, making it ideal for growing crops in gardens and farms.

Calculating the Amount of Sand Needed

To determine how much sand is needed to fill an area:

  1. Measure the square footage and multiply by the depth in feet to calculate the cubic feet.
  2. Divide the cubic feet by 27 to get cubic yards, then multiply the cubic yards by the unit weight in pounds divided by 2000 to determine how many tons of sand are required.
  3. Note that the unit weight varies depending on the type of sand used.

Coarse sand weighs around 100-105 pounds per cubic foot, while fine sand has a unit weight of about 90 pounds per cubic foot.

Overloading Your Truck with Sand and Gravel

Overloading a truck with sand and gravel can lead to serious consequences. The extra weight stresses the braking system and increases wear and tear on the suspension and tires. Following the manufacturer’s recommendations for maximum payload capacity is essential to avoid damaging the vehicle. Consult a professional if you need clarification on your truck’s weight limit.


Dump trucks play a crucial role in construction projects, efficiently transporting large quantities of sand and soil, particularly for projects requiring a substantial amount of fill material. The cost of transporting sand or dirt depends on the type of material and the distance covered. 

When estimating the amount of sand required, one must consider the area’s square footage and depth. While most pickup trucks can hold up to two cubic yards of sand, anything beyond that should be transported via dump truck or trailer. Overloading a truck with sand can damage the brakes, suspension, and tires, leading to costly repairs. Therefore, it is essential to know your truck’s maximum payload capacity. This knowledge makes determining the necessary sand amount for your next project a breeze.

About the author, Laurence Perkins

Laurence Perkins is the passionate car enthusiast behind the blog My Auto Machine. With over a decade of experience in the automotive industry, Perkins has knowledge and experience with a wide range of car makes and models. His particular interests lie in performance and modification, and his blog covers these topics in-depth. In addition to his own blog, Perkins is a respected voice in the automotive community and writes for various automotive publications. His insights and opinions on cars are highly sought-after.