When purchasing a piece of heavy equipment, it can be hard to decide which machine will serve your company the best. Do you need a skid steer loader or a compact track loader? What about a multi-terrain loader? To help make this decision a little simpler, we’ve compared and contrasted the pros and cons of each of these pieces of heavy equipment.
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What to Know Before Buying
What do you need to know before signing on the dotted line and making your purchase? Ask yourself four questions:
- How big is your workspace?
- Is the workspace finished or unfinished?
- What loads do you have to move?
- How far do you need to haul your materials?
Once you have the answer to these four questions, read on for the pros and cons of each type of loader.
Comparing SSLs, CTLS & MTLs
All three loaders are versatile and easy to maneuver, though they are not all suitable for all situations. They all require the same amount of time and effort on maintenance as well.
SSLs utilize tires instead of tracks, making them ideal for use on hard or paved surfaces. The tires also make them capable of climbing curbs or other blunt obstacles. The tires give them the ability to make tight turns in small areas, and their high ground clearance makes it easier to avoid obstacles on unfinished job sites.
CTLs use a steel track with embedded rubber that works best on hard or unstable terrain. It offers lower ground pressure than the tires on an SSL with better stability and traction. The tracks create a smoother ride and allow the CTL to function on rough surfaces like mud, sand or gravel.
MTLs use a rubber on rubber track which creates the lowest ground pressure, making it ideal for use on finished surfaces like sod, turf and athletic fields. The rubber tracks don’t disturb the surface of the ground and provide flotation in wet environments. They also offer the best stability and traction, even if they don’t turn as quickly as SSLs.
Equipment Impact on Profits
We’ve got one more question to add to those four earlier ones. How much money are you prepared to spend on a new piece of equipment, and when do you expect it to pay itself off?
In the short term, SSLs are the clear savings winner. Your initial purchase price will be lower, and replacement tires only cost a quarter of what you’ll spend on treads.
If you’re purchasing equipment for the long haul, CTLs and MTLs may be the better option. Mid-quality tracks can last three to four times as long as tires, and high-quality tracks can last even longer than that.
The important things to remember are that your company, your projects, and your focus will determine what loader your company needs. Take a close look at your needs and the information we’ve provided for you, to help you figure out which loader is best for you. For additional information, contact us today!