Cheaper Machinery May Be More Expensive in the Long Run


Champagne taste on a beer salary. An old saying that rings true, even in the heavy equipment field. You want a really nice piece of equipment, but right now it doesn’t quite fit the budget. So what do you do? There are two options – you can save and plan for the piece of equipment you want or you can buy a cheaper machine right now to fill the needs your company has at the moment. Buying a “right now” machine might seem like the ideal solution to get the job done, but have you considered the long term repercussions? Cheaper, “right now” machines have a smaller impact on the corporate wallet at the forefront; however, repairs and unscheduled maintenance add up quickly in the big picture.

Does it roll with the punches?
The answer is: probably not. Heavy equipment – be it a feller buncher, class 8 truck, or boom lift – goes through a myriad of misapplications on a daily basis. Simply said, cheaper equipment doesn’t have the gusto to handle such manipulation. When this happens, your company is looking at spending money more often to fix repairs that wouldn’t have otherwise been needed.

What does it really cost?

As hinted at above, it costs more to repair cheaper equipment simply because you have to fix something more often. So, already you’re accounting for the cost of the actual piece of equipment and the repairs. That’s it, right? Think outside the proverbial box… now what are you paying for? You’re not only paying for the upfront costs of purchase and maintenance, take a look at what Fleet Harmony said:

“On the surface, basing heavy equipment repair costs entirely on your accounts payable financial records sounds logical, right? …Many of these considerations are intangible, and the return on investment can only be measured over the entire life of the equipment.”

In other words, your operating expenses go through the roof because you chose a piece of cheaper, lower quality equipment. The long term consequences add up.

Your other options are…?

You might think a piece of John Deere machinery or a Kenworth truck might be out of your equipment league, but don’t be too hasty. There are plenty of options to think about when looking towards purchasing a new (or even used) truck, tractor, forklift, you name it. Sure, it would be really nice to have a 9620R tractor, but think about what your applications really are… Do you need the monster 4-wheel drive? Or would a 6140M be a better fit for your overall needs? The same principles can be used with a Kenworth truck or a Hyster forklift. Because we are a John Deere dealer, a Kenworth dealer, and a Hyster dealer (just to name a few), we would be able to help you find what you need in your price range.

As a heavy equipment owner, you don’t have to break the bank to buy a new piece of equipment. Focus on what you need and don’t skimp on the quality of the machine. In the long run, a cheaper, low quality machine will cost you more heartache and more money to maintain. Sometimes, champagne is a better fit for the celebration… go ahead, get the higher quality.

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