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Most and Least Profitable Heavy Equipment Machinery to Own

November 15th, 2021

Power Equipment Company Home Page

If you are considering heavy equipment for sale, you are likely wondering whether you can make it profitable, or if it’s going to be a terrible loss.

It’s hard to know how any given piece of equipment is going to work out for you, but talking to our friends in construction, we’ve come across some wisdom about the most and least profitable heavy equipment to own.

Most Profitable: Mini Excavators

Everyone agrees that mini excavators for sale have a competitive advantage. They are relatively low cost to buy, but you can charge a relatively high price when billing. The cost for mini excavators also benefits because transportation is inexpensive, fuel use is low, and maintenance costs are mini, too!

The other benefit mini excavators have is that they are very useful. You wouldn’t choose a mini excavator for rent when owning one lets you hustle up numerous side jobs that keep your mini excavators running all the time.

Most Profitable: Wheel Loaders

It’s also a good idea to look at wheel loaders for sale. Like excavators, wheel loaders are highly flexible machines that get a lot of use. They are easy to transport – you can drive the medium-sized ones to many jobs! The billing rates are good, too, and maintenance is reasonable. The big variable here is what size wheel loader is right for your company. They range in sizes from tiny skid steers to nearly 300-ton monsters. Rightsizing your loaders for your typical jobs is essential to maximizing profitability.

Wheel loaders also get a lot of side work. Why pick a wheel loader for rent when you can keep your wheel loader busy essentially all day every day at side jobs? There’s a catch here, though. There are so many accessories for wheel loaders that it’s easy to think you need them all. Especially when you get an offer for a job that requires one, and you think you might get more. But if you invest in too much specialized equipment, the loader isn’t profitable anymore. Buy the loader. Get the key attachments for your steady work. Then if you need special attachments for a particular job, consider renting.

Least Profitable: Trucks

We know, this sounds like it’s too broad a category, but trust us, this is the story we hear about many different kinds of trucks: haul trucks, tractor-trailers, and more. Trucks are necessary for practically every job, but they can be a cost sink. Between the expense of buying them, the cost of maintenance, and the heavy fuel consumption, it’s hard to be able to bill enough to make them pay.

There are two main ways people make trucks pay. One is to get a truck that’ll do double-duty. Like a tractor you can use both as a dump truck and for transporting your other equipment. Of course, this limits the types of jobs you can take: that semi-trailer dump isn’t going to get to all the jobs. The other way is to specialize. This is how trucking companies do it: streamlining their operation by specializing. And, of course, charging a lot to construction companies who need their services.

The thing is: trucks are often a necessary evil. You own them because it’s even less profitable to pay someone else to transport your equipment and haul your debris.

Least Profitable: Smooth Drum Roller

A smooth drum roller has one job: it rolls earth flat. That’s what it does. That’s all it does. And because it does it well, you don’t even use it that much on most jobs. Just a few hours here and there, unless you’re doing roads full-time.

If you are doing a lot of roads and drives, it might be worth it to carry a smooth drum roller at a loss because, like a truck, you need it all the time. However, for many companies, a roller is the perfect choice for renting or even hiring a roller and driver.

Is Buying or Renting Right For You? Contact Us and Find Out

If you are looking for the heavy equipment your business needs, whether you are looking for heavy equipment for sale or for heavy equipment for rent, we can get you a quote on the price. Please call 800-883-9284 or email us today.