An excavator is a significant investment; similar to a car or any other machinery equipment. It’s a machine that promises to reap continuous rewards and offer effectiveness in your business if used correctly.
That being said, there’s much debate around whether or not buying a used excavator is worthwhile. Aside from the obvious perk of saving money, can used excavators bring value to your operation and function as well as new excavators would?
The answer lies in a series of necessary tips and tricks to keep in mind during your investment.
When heavy debris needs to be loosened and lifted—such as rock, metals, land & rubble—an excavator is needed to do the work.
Excavators are large pieces of machinery with claw-like arms. They can both dislodge and move significant portions of debris for construction purposes.
Excavators are used on building sites, road construction, bridge building, tunnel digging and an array of other land based work.
They’re essentially the largest mechanised lifting vehicles apart from full sized cranes that need a lot more space and cost more money. Excavation is an intricate part of day to day life for construction teams and these vehicles come in high demand.
Why Buy Used?
Making the decision to buy used excavators instead of new needs to be an informed one. You’ll need to attain the necessary checks and certifications before making your investment.
Finding a quality, used excavator for sale definitely comes with its list of pros.
The obvious yet most beneficial benefit: Buying a used excavator will be significantly cheaper than any new excavator on the market.
You’ll save money on your initial investment, and assuming no further maintenance is needed on the unit you’ll be saving money in the long run. The trouble comes in when a used excavator requires more work than initially anticipated and the bills continue to rack up before it has even been used.
Buying used always means you’re reducing the demand on the excavator manufacturer industry. This in turn reduces your carbon footprint as there’s no need for more plastic, metal, rubber and other materials to be taken from the earth to build new units.
Buying a used excavator is a form of recycling. It keeps the parts in use for longer and there will be less waste piling up from discarded systems.
Tips to Keep In Mind When Buying
By taking all of the following pointers into account when buying a used excavator you can ensure that you’ll at least get your money’s worth and make a safe investment.
All excavators, new and used, come with titles under their names. The validity of this title needs to be checked before you make your purchase.
Using the serial number of the excavator and the engine inside you’ll be able to pull up the history of the parts & manufacturer. There’s always risk of excavators containing stolen parts to cut costs; this puts the safety of your unit at risk. A clear title is the only way of ensuring this isn’t the case.
As important as checking the serial codes of your used excavator, you’ll need to check the existing oil in the same way.
Take a sample of the oil and send it off the be tested for contamination. Any trace of contamination within the oil of a used excavator is a good indication that the unit probably won’t last very long.
It’s equally as important to check you boom and dipper cylinders to confirm there are no leaks that will require repairs down the line.
Percentage of Wear
- The overall percentage of wear need to be checked on the following areas:
- Tracks and track rollers
- Buckets and bucket pins
- Dozer blade edges
- Final drive sprockets
Neglecting to check these prior to purchase can result in a very high maintenance bill to follow.
Aside from the percentage of wear, the overall structural integrity of the used excavator needs to be checked in the following areas:
- Welding checks
- Boom and dipper arms for cracks
- Warranty coverage and relative parts
- Safety features including: ROPS, double locking quick hitches and pre-cleaners
In short, there’s nothing wrong with opting to buy a used excavator even when there is a new excavator for sale. So long as the unit meets all of the safety and structural certifications listed above you’ll no doubt get many years of quality performance out of it.
Investing in a used excavator is an effective way to save money and make use of a system that was not necessary to destroy yet.
Simply keep these tips in mind and be extremely thorough in your checking of the unit prior to purchase.
3… 2… 1… dig!