Concrete Pumps Pros/Cons Feedback??

Discussion in 'Heavy Equipment & Pavement' started by RipT, Jul 4, 2006.

  1. RipT

    RipT LawnSite Member
    Messages: 41

    This may be a bit too off-topic for LawnSite, but am hoping a few here can provide some valuable insight regarding trailer-mounted 30 to 60 yd/hr size piston-type concrete (not grout) pumps.

    Main application would be for residential foundations/footers & slabs with perhaps some taller formed or ICF walls. Largest aggrigate likely 3/4" and distance 200'. Max height 20ft. High volume not the key.... looking for less mess, less stress, fewer crew, better job at end of day.

    Any feedback ? ?

    Hope everyone is having a Great 4th!!

  2. Mowingman

    Mowingman LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Texas
    Messages: 4,714

    I used to work around concrete pumps a lot, but never owned one. They are very expensive to purchase, and they are very expensive to maintain. Without proper maint., you can be looking at expensive repairs. Even with proper maint., costs to operate them are quite high.
    I would suggest you have a lot of work lined up to keep a pump busy, or you will not recover your investment. Also, never buy a used one, that is just asking for trouble.
  3. Dirty Water

    Dirty Water LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,794

    Around here, its $250-$300 to rent a pump for a pour. In my opinion it would take a very long time to for a pump to pay for itself, especially if you factor in downtime and repairs.

    I'm not talking about a little trailer mounted pump for $300 either, I'm talking about a fullsize pump with a boom that can reach over a house to do a pour.

    Also, that $300 pays for the pump operator to run the thing while you can focus on pouring and finishing.
  4. ksss

    ksss LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,157

    Bobcat sells a concrete pump that goes on a skid steer. They are about 25K or at least thats what they were when they first came out. May be more now. When they first released them, the dealer here was doing demos with it. I heard cleaning is a pain. I don't know anyone who bought one. If you just need one when you need one kinda thing it may be the way to go. Especially if you already have a skid steer. Do a couple jobs a month for other guys and it would help pay for itself.
  5. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,544

    A concrete pump is big money a tow behind pump is rarely used unless your doing a small job. If a pump is required then a boom pump is brought in other wise concrete is moved in wheelbarrows or chutes. There is a truck around here that is a Mitsubushi COE 2 ton 4x4 it has the line pump mounted on it. The company that has that also does the placing and finishing and its used for specialty jobs.

    You might loose money instead of making money with a line pump your going to need to buy a F-450 4x4 with a flatdeck on it to carry the hoses and other micellanous items and tow the pump. A regular P/U isn't going to last long doing a job like that.

    Concrete is the most abrasive and corrosive stuff on the planet. You work on a job where they are using accellerator in the concrete its starting to kick and the guys that are placing the concrete isn't working fast enough. Or the job requires the use of kitty hair in the the concrete (fiberglass strand) it sticks to the pump and causes more wear.

    I have don't quite abit of ready mix and help place concrete its not a easy job not a fun job when the form blows out.

    Good Luck :laugh:
  6. RipT

    RipT LawnSite Member
    Messages: 41

    Thanks all for the input..... as I said we are just "thinking" about one of these. The various downsides may well outweigh the advantages of having one less thing to be at the mercy of someone else for. I do know they are high maintenance, thus why they are hard to rent as well.

    Keep the comments flowing.... must be someone out there who has something good to say about them.... or maybe not?
  7. gammon landscaping

    gammon landscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 553

    around here there are 3-4 guys that pump with the smaller pulll type units and they get 100-150 an hour for them. and i think a 4 hour min. one guy that i see do alot of work has a deal with the concrete company. they call it a pump mix it costs 10 more a yard and he splits it with the concrete company, and they always have his there when he wants it. as with all buesnesses that are high cost it is easirer to charge alittle more, more money you have to spend less low ballers and start ups to deal with. it is hard work though that hose is heavy as hell and cleaning is a pia
  8. jazak

    jazak LawnSite Senior Member
    from NJ
    Messages: 843

    I saw a guy who had a concrete pump on his bobcat. Does anyone know more about this? Maybe this would be a little cheaper for him no?
  9. tylermckee

    tylermckee LawnSite Member
    from wa
    Messages: 248

    The guys that do our concrete work place at LEAST 50 yards of concrete a day on average (foundations, flatwork, etc), the concrete company they order from has trucks reserved for them, and the pump truck company saves a pump for them too. I was talking with one of the owners and he said he looking into getting a pump truck but its just not worth it for them. the initail investment is large, plus maintaining it, keeping it busy every day, its pretty much running another business. as long as you can find get a good relationship with a local pump outfit i wouldnt really see the need to buy your own, just pass the cost along to the customer
  10. RipT

    RipT LawnSite Member
    Messages: 41

    Thanks again for the feedback.....does seem like it may take quite a while to recoup investment much less actually make a profit from one of these. Too bad one can not rent this size unit more readilly.

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