Regardless of whether you need a large pumper or a small service truck, equipment investments are a big decision. Rising automobile prices and long lead times only add to the pressure. However, PROs expressed concerns about trucks and the purchasing process long before the pandemic.
Now, we’re asking you. What aspects of your vacuum, flatbed, and service vehicles do you love? Are there elements of the buying process that could be improved? Below are some common concerns, and we’d like your opinion. Drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org or reach out to JohnTalk on Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter. You can also leave a reply at the bottom of this page.
Let’s face it. It’s hard to imagine exchanging a Hemi V8 for a battery-powered engine in your service truck. At the same time, gas prices aren’t coming down anytime soon, and the added costs are taking a bite out of your profits. Low miles per gallon may feel inevitable, but could a new vehicle enhance productivity and boost efficiency?
Increasingly, PROs are looking for flexible vehicles that let service teams complete deliveries and standard calls on the same trip. For example, a Dodge or Ford 5500 with a vacuum tank could do double-duty by also carrying standard restrooms. As a result, a custom-built vehicle could reduce the number of trips your drivers make and deliver significant fuel savings.
Are you paying more attention to truck efficiency before purchasing? Or, thinking about ways to get the most out of your investment? To this end, how helpful are the sales teams in your area? Sure, they understand your weight and payload requirements, but are they willing to hear you out when it comes to building or sourcing a unit that’s flexible enough to handle multiple tasks along the route?
Conventional wisdom has been that buying trucks for the portable restroom industry is preferred over leasing. After all, you put many miles on your vehicles, and a few dings from the unloading/loading process aren’t uncommon. Moreover, few PROs can afford the downtime that occurs every time the lease comes due.
On the other hand, full-service leasing companies offer flexible financing options and contract maintenance plans. Both can give you some leeway in your budget while freeing up your shop crew. Have cash flow problems or does the lure of maintenance-included leasing make leasing a truck more appealing? If so, what could seal the deal and make leasing a better option over purchasing?
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Undoubtedly, there are truck features that increase the functionality of your vehicle, reducing downtime and boosting your crew’s productivity. Tank liners combat erosion, and hydraulic front lift systems make it easier to remove sludge. Are there specific truck, trailer, or tank features that are must-haves for your portable restroom business? Or, do you prefer to outfit your vehicle as the need arises?
Also, do maintenance and replacement costs factor into your decision? A higher-end model may offer more options, but if a failed diverter door requires removing the entire dashboard to replace a $75 part, are you really coming out ahead?
The days of selecting a truck and having it in your yard within a few months are over, as lead times now extend up to two years for some types and models. That’s putting a lot of PROs in a position where they have to consider their options long before the vehicle is needed or they feel ready to buy. We understand how this added pressure affects our portable sanitation community.
Moreover, we believe manufacturers can improve the truck-buying process to ensure you’re getting a durable, easy-to-maintain, and efficient unit. Our lines are open, so email us at email@example.com or message JohnTalk on Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter. You can also leave a reply at the bottom of this page. Describe your biggest complaints about trucks and what could be done to improve the process, price, and timeframe.
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Thinking About GETTING INTO the Portable Restroom Industry? Download our FREE Guide: “Your Guide to Starting A Portable Restroom Business.”
I love how you point out the importance of having flexibility in a work truck. I have a cousin who tows a lot of trailers and he’s been looking to get a new truck that can handle that. He’s been looking into finding dealers and what to look for.