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Buying Used Heavy Equipment At Auction? Check Out These Tips!

Tuesday, June 25th, 2019
Tips for having a great far equipment auction with high plains auctioneers

If you are in the market for new heavy equipment, don’t quickly shop for a brand new machine. Consider looking for used equipment. Heavy equipment is designed to last for years and if properly maintained, it can be used for decades. You can save significantly if you buy your next equipment at auction. This post will go over how to inspect skid steer loaders, wheel loaders, and dozers to ensure that you are making the right purchase.

Inspecting skid steer loaders at auction

Skid steer loaders are compact and useful in a variety of settings. If you are looking at getting a used skid steer loader, then you should start with inspecting the bucket. Check out the edges, side panels, and the bottom. Are these areas thick? Do you see any signs of repair work? Is it of good quality? Check out the lift cylinders and arms to see if there are any cracks or leaks. If you see cracks or bends, that is a bad sign and may indicate it was rolled during operation.

Next, you will want to check out the canopy and confirm that it will protect the operator in the event of an accident. Inspect the integrity of the side screens and load bearing structures. The equipment should have an enclosed cab and have no missing parts.

You should also check out the general operation of this heavy equipment to make sure that the seatbelts work and the safety bar is operational. If the auction house allows you, listen to the engine and watch the exhaust. After 10 seconds, it should become clear. Make sure to lift the bucket too. If it lifts and drops slightly, this could be an indication that the hydraulics have a problem.

Wheel loader inspection tips

With wheel loaders, you will want to check out the bucket as well. Inspect the edge, bottom, and rim. Is it thick enough and are there missing bucket teeth? Check out the coupling arms, lifts, and hydraulics for bends or cracks. Finally, check out the lift arm cylinders.

You also need to inspect the hydraulics systems on the wheel loader. Start with the hoses and cylinders to see if there is any damage. Next, move onto the hose couplings to see if there are any breaks or scratches. You should check every cylinder to see if there are any dents, breaks, or scratches. These may allow contaminants into the system. You should also check the air filter to see the last inspection date, which indicates how well the wheel loader was cared for.

You should inspect the cab next. The seats and pedals should be in good condition. Turn on the machine and check the gauges to confirm they are operational if you can. Raise the bucket and listen to how it works. If you hear squeaking, that is an indication it isn’t working properly.

Finally, inspect the center articulation point which is in the bottom of the wheel loader. Check for signs of wear that show it was operated in uneven, rocky conditions.

Inspecting dozers at auction

Each type of dozer blade is designed for a specific task. Regardless of the blade type, you can use these tips to inspect them. First, check out the blade face for any plate lines to make sure there has not been excessive wear that has been repaired. You should also check out the top of the blade, the spill guard, and any damage that might have been caused by rocks. Finally, inspect the push arms and cylinders for cracks or breaks.

Next, move onto the undercarriage. This is where you will see most issues on this type of heavy equipment. Check both sides of the undercarriage because many operators favor steering left or right. This often results in uneven wear. Look for side, reversal, and radial wear on the idler as well. Don’t forget to check out the sprocket and segment pieces for issues with the teeth. If you see teeth that are sharp, pointed, or have a thin appearance, that could indicate damage.

Next, move onto the cab and hydraulics system. When inspecting hydraulics, check out the system for signs of leaks or damage including scratches and dents. Go through the engine panels and look for signs of leaks, dirty filters, and loose belts. Check all the fluids and don’t forget to look underneath for fluids.

Heavy equipment auctions in Texas

If you are interested in learning more about used heavy equipment, call High Plains Auctioneers at (806) 244-6776 today. You can also Contact Us by email to learn more about Bidding at our auctions. Don’t forget to check out our Upcoming Events to see what we will have available!