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Spray trucks + new or used + which?

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by americanlawn, Dec 10, 2007.

  1. americanlawn

    americanlawn LawnSite Fanatic
    from midwest
    Posts: 5,859

    Curious what you guys try to buy. Other than a 'tanker truck spray rig' (big-ass Isuzu, etc), which pickups do you guys look for?

    We run GMC/Chevy 2500 HD's. Some of ours are 4x4's, and some are 2wd's. Except for our snow plow trucks, we only need 2-wd pickups for our chemical trucks.

    Since new pickups are now selling for nearly $40,000, we have switched over to buying "used" instead of new. Problem is....we need standard cab trucks (hard to find). We only buy white trucks (hard to find). 2500HD's are very expensive, yet they certainly hold up for many years.

    Then there's the resale value ........ seems if it ain't a GMC or Chevy....resale value ain't much if you're trying to sell a ford or dodge.

    Goin' to Skokie,IL Friday to pick up a C200HD for $6300. 120,000 miles, but in excellent condition. (Been looking for awhile for a deal like this).

    We'll see. One thing I know for sure: I need a 4x4 about 5 days per year.....that's it, cuz the roads are quickly cleared within 24 hours of each snow/ice storm.

    So anyways.......what trucks do you guys try to find???
  2. MStine315

    MStine315 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 789

    I'm with you. Haven't bought a new truck in 13 years. I try to find them with 30,000 miles +/-, but just added a Dodge to the fleet with 50,000 ('05 diesel). Mine are all 4WD, but they also all have plows. Have one of each so far, Dodge, Chevy, Ford, lol. The Ford had high miles on it ('96), but it's a diesel, too, so that's ok. The Chevy had 28,000 on it when I bought it, 145,000 now (2002).
  3. Tscape

    Tscape LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,373

    Chevy/GMC have about the lowest resale around here. Ford does OK. Dodge seems to be the best and I don't understand that. I run all Ford trucks: 95 crewcab 7.3 dually, 2002 F250 4x4, and a 1997 F350 4x4 460 auto. All white.
  4. naughty62

    naughty62 LawnSite Senior Member
    from iowa
    Posts: 368

    A few thing we look at is.Not so much the milage ,but was the injectors and pump been replaced , turbo charger replacement , does the manual trans have synchronizer problems or shift hard .wheel base , its harder to get a hold of a long wheel base one ton .could you mount a different box on it .some people cant or will not buy a 25-45 grand rig just for spraying .iT will take a lot of rounds to pay for a rig like that .
  5. LawnTamer

    LawnTamer LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,988

    We currently have 2 Chev 2500s one is a 2004 2500 HD extra cab 4x4, the other just a 2wd regular cab. They have been pretty good to me. I think that 2wd is the way to go unless you need the truck for something else like plowing or off road use. My 2004 4x4 is also my personal use truck, so I take it camping and pull our travel trailer/ 4wheelers around with it.
  6. turf hokie

    turf hokie LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,744

    I have bought used, but the repairs have killed me. To the tune of "I could have bought a new truck at this point."
    We run a 96 Mitsu 14' box and a 97 F350 diesel.
    But we are considering adding a new Dodge Sprinter to start fazing out the older trucks. I cant find a used Box truck with a GVW over 13,500 and under 150,000 miles for under 14k and to me that is too much for a truck with that kind of mileage.
    Around here everything is 4x4 and has usually been beat on b/c of snowplowing.
  7. PHS

    PHS LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 724


    Right now since I'm in the middle of restarting my business I've got one truck that has to suffice for everything but I'm planning on my next vehicle to be new or a low-mileage "new" truck. I'm planning to use it for around 8 years. At that point I can still get a decent amount of money out of it if it isn't completely beat-up and I can expect a reasonably trouble free service life.

    That may not be the absolute least expensive route, but the variables can eat you alive on old vehicles. Not to mention the hidden downtime costs and just general headache. The basic idea is that you can buy a truck for 40k and sell it for 15k and it cost $25,000 with a low variable cost. Or I can buy at $15k and run it into the ground. It looks I saved $10k until I include the considerably higher variable cost over a comparable service life and the savings per year my not end up being all that much.

    This is for your primary vehicle. For a back-up truck or a specialized vehicle that doesn't get used all that much then that's totally different.
  8. americanlawn

    americanlawn LawnSite Fanatic
    from midwest
    Posts: 5,859

    Four of our trucks were purchased new, and the other five were bought used. Our problem = the truck beds rust after a few years due to fertilizer. I figure a new truck will rust just as fast as a used one. Goin' to Chicago this week to get a 2001 C2500HD Chevy w/119,000 miles on it. Cost = $6300, and the truck is mint. I figure on selling our oldest truck - 1995 Chevy 3/4 ton 2WD w/almost 200,000 miles on it. I know there are advantages regarding buying new, but one local LCO went bankrupt last year cuz he bought all new trucks & equipment. He was in business less than 5 years. Our newest truck is a 2003 K2500HD -------I just don't want to spend $30,000 or more for a truck anymore. I'd rather spend money on equipment & employees. My opinion only.
  9. whoopassonthebluegrass

    whoopassonthebluegrass LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,214

    This might sound crazy to some of you, but I really like the C/K chevys. 99-01 they were still built as work trucks. They were the end of that generation, possessing many years worth of small refinements. Mine has been bulletproof.

    Plus, white is easy to find, and - while they look good - you'll never have a customer wondering if you're over paid. Also, parts are cheap and plentiful...

    Just my two cents.

    In addition, they're dirt cheap.
  10. PHS

    PHS LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 724

    Are you using any spray on bedliners?

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