When do you bite the bullet and buy new trucks

Discussion in 'Trucks and Trailers' started by dmk395, Nov 28, 2019.

  1. dmk395

    dmk395 LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Ma
    Messages: 1,027

    We have 3 older trucks 2003, 2005 and 2011. Repair bills get kinda heavy at times, however we have 0 payments. New trucks seem VERY expensive. They all look good, but are old. At what point to you decide to replace. Our main truck only does about 6k miles per year.
     
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  2. sjessen

    sjessen LawnSite Fanatic
    Male, from Knoxville, Tn
    Messages: 14,261

    I go back and forth on this also. My truck is an '03. The repairs are aggravating at times but when comparing the total cost of ownership including depreciation it makes the most sense to run the older trucks, unless they are unreliable. My thought is that as long as repair costs, other than regular maintenance, is under $5k/year I am still ahead of the game when all other costs are taken into consideration.

    That said, there is nothing wrong with getting newer trucks.
     
  3. Burnie

    Burnie LawnSite Member
    Messages: 238

    All 3 of my trucks are 2006 models. Some years I have spent over 6k in repairs, but most years it is under 2k, much less than payments. When repairs get to the point a truck is down more than it is running, then I will look at a "Newer" truck (I never buy a new truck off the lot).
     
  4. gcbailey

    gcbailey LawnSite Gold Member
    from WV
    Messages: 3,149

    When the accountant says you need to....
     
  5. Mdirrigation

    Mdirrigation LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,423

    I will buy a newer used truck when ever a deal presents itself . Even if I dont need a "new truck at the time .I found a service van with 80K on it for $5000 in excellent shape , I then sold my older van that had 160K . I like to replace them before I am forced to go get one
     
  6. sjessen

    sjessen LawnSite Fanatic
    Male, from Knoxville, Tn
    Messages: 14,261

    Agreed. Tires, brakes, etc. are just normal maintenance. Engines and transmissions are another story.
     
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  7. Mark Stark

    Mark Stark LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,149

    I can't see the logic in buying brand new trucks either. Some companies here buy new and it boggles my mind. Tax wrote off, fancy looking, reliable, etc...I don't buy into those arguments.

    Our trucks only get about 7k year put on them. For us, I like finding something at 100k or more, a small dent somewhere (I'll find it but most people will never notice), and a torn driver seat, and 2wd. Helps lower the perceived value and gets us a better price.

    We just use the trucks to make money. They're clean and they look professional with lettering. I'm the end, they're just another tool. I can't imagine sending our guys out in an expensive new truck. When I find cigarette butts, empty cigarette packs, and coffee cups everywhere, it fires me up. When they dent a new truck?? Don't think I could take it haha
     
  8. sjessen

    sjessen LawnSite Fanatic
    Male, from Knoxville, Tn
    Messages: 14,261

    I'm at the end game stage of business so the plan is to get a nicer truck after this gig is over. No sense trashing a nice vehicle.
     
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  9. sjessen

    sjessen LawnSite Fanatic
    Male, from Knoxville, Tn
    Messages: 14,261

    Giving new trucks to the help is similar to letting a chimpanzee play with a Stradivarius.Thumbs Up
     
  10. Mark Stark

    Mark Stark LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,149

    I can think of at least one of my guys where'd I probably trust the chimpanzee more :hammerhead:
     
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