As petroleum gas prices continue to climb, alternative fuel options have become a popular topic of discussion. This isn’t just because of cost, but also because of rising environmental concerns. The U.S. Department of Energy recognizes six major types of green fuel options: biodiesel, electricity, ethanol, hydrogen, natural gas, and propane.
Which Alternative Fuel is Best?
Choosing an alternative fuel option for your utility fleet depends on the needs and circumstances of your business. Making the switch from petroleum gas is a big decision. While turning your business green will save you cash while saving the planet, there are many things to consider.
Here is a basic run-down of your alternative fuel options to help you decide if going green is right for your business.
Biodiesel is made from vegetable oil, like corn or canola, animal fat, or recycled restaurant grease. The greener, earth-friendly version of regular diesel, biodiesel can be used in most [...]
When operating a dump truck, safety is essential. The loading and unloading processes are most dangerous. This is when most accidents and injuries occur. However, following these safety tips will reduce the risk of injury to crew members, as well as damage to equipment both on and off the job site.
Tips for Dump Truck Safety Before Loading
Before any material is loaded, a thorough inspection of the vehicle should be completed. Essential safety features should be checked to ensure they are all in good working order. Any parts that require lubrication should be inspected. The dump truck’s suspension needs to be inspected by the operator before loading. The air pressure of a
ll tires should be examined to ensure proper inflation. Properly inflated tires provide a stable base which is important during loading and unloading. An unstable truck will tip more easily causing potential injury or damage.
Diesel engine trouble can leave you and your utility vehicle stopped dead in your tracks. That’s why you need to make sure your utility trucks receive regular preventive maintenance. Preventive maintenance is the best way to ensure your truck’s diesel engine runs smoothly and reliably for years to come.
Because of advancement in technology, most diesel engines are now computerized. This means that for most repairs and upkeep, you will have to rely on a professional diesel engine technician. However, there are still several things you can do on your own to ensure your diesel engine continues to perform in peak condition.
Most utility truck operators have a fundamental understanding of how their vehicle’s diesel engine works, so it shouldn’t be difficult to regularly perform these simple maintenance tasks. To keep your diesel engine in peak performance [...]
Bucket trucks and bucket lifts are both aerial work platforms. They both serve the same function: to lift a worker to areas that are not otherwise easily accessible. However, there are some crucial differences. Knowing how both work will help you choose the right equipment for the job.
The “bucket” is an aerial platform that is secured to a hydraulic lift system. This lift system in both bucket trucks and lifts are essentially the same. They are designed to lift a crew member into the air to reach places that would difficult or dangerous to reach with a ladder.
Both pieces of equipment are mobile and used for temporary access. This sets them apart from permanent lifts like elevators. They are lightweight when compared to other lifts such as cranes, typically weighing less than a ton. They are also intended to hold only one or two people.
Bucket trucks and other equipment that use a knuckleboom to raise weight above the height of the vehicle can easily be tipped off balance as the weight is raised. This unbalance poses a danger to the equipment, as well as equipment operators and other workers in the area.
Fortunately, most modern standard-production commercial equipment is equipped with safety outriggers. They work to securely stabilize the truck while the boom is in operation.
Be careful when purchasing a used, older model truck. Always make sure that the vehicle you are purchasing comes equipped with safety outriggers. If not, make sure to have them installed before using the knuckleboom.
What are Outriggers?
Outriggers are like extendable “feet” that keep bucket trucks and other utility vehicles balanced. They provide extra stability to prevent the vehicle from tipping or completely flipping over. When the truck’s outriggers are extended, it has the additional support it needs if the [...]
A bucket truck is a work truck with an attached aerial lift. They are designed to safely lift people into the air to perform work that can’t be easily or safely reached even with a ladder.
Bucket trucks are commonly seen on highways, suburban side streets, and country back roads. While most people tend to think of bucket trucks as utility vehicles only used to work on electrical poles, they can also be used for various tasks from the mundane to the unusual.
Here are just a few uses for the common bucket truck, although some of these are anything but common.
Uses for Bucket Trucks
#1 Electrical and Telephone Line Maintenance
This is the most common and obvious use for a bucket truck. Special insulated bucket trucks elevate workers while [...]
Since bucket trucks first came into being, they have been powered by diesel-run internal combustion engines. In recent years, despite advances in technology, this has held true. The clear majority of bucket trucks still rely exclusively on a diesel engine for power to drive as well as to operate the hydraulic lift. Recently, however, as fuel costs continue to rise, engineers are re-imagining the traditional design, giving birth to the new hybrid bucket trucks.
What is a Hybrid Bucket Truck?
A hybrid bucket truck has two distinct types of engines. When you lift the hood of a hybrid bucket truck, you’ll find a diesel engine that looks exactly like the one you would find under the hood of a traditional bucket truck. This standard diesel engine powers the transmission of the truck for on-road driving.
If you want a piece of work equipment that really delivers for its size, you can’t beat a knuckleboom truck. Also called loader cranes, articulating cranes, and picker cranes, the knuckleboom has transformed the way many industries load and offload materials.
A knuckleboom crane is similar to a standard crane in the way it performs. The major difference being that a knuckleboom hinges at the “knuckle” near the middle. This allows it to fold back like a clenched finger creating a more compact size and easier maneuverability than a standard crane.
Why You Need a Knuckleboom Truck
A versatile piece of equipment, a knuckleboom crane truck can handle multiple jobs. Their smaller size offers a lot of performance for the money invested. This makes them a smart investment for companies to do a lot with [...]
Finding a replacement part for your bucket truck can often be problematic, especially if you have an older model. Bucket truck parts aren’t exactly something you can run out to your local auto parts store to pick up. However, purchasing an entirely new piece of equipment may not be practical, especially if you are dealing with a minor issue.
Where to Find Replacement Parts for Your Bucket Truck
All is not lost, however. There are few places you can look for bucket truck replacement parts. Here are a few suggestions.
Finding Parts Online
You can find almost anything for sale on the internet, and replacement parts for bucket trucks are no exception. You can with your favorite search engine. Typing the part you need into Google, Bing, or Yahoo will bring up plenty of relevant results. Unfortunately, many of these results won’t necessarily be parts for sale.
Diesel fuel is definitely the life’s blood of any utility fleet. It is what keeps your trucks going. Without it, you would be out of business.
Commercial carriers consume over 38 billion gallons of diesel fuel annually. If you’ve been paying attention to the rising cost of diesel fuel, you can probably imagine just how many dollars that translates to. Diesel fuel is one of the biggest expenses of any company that operates heavy trucks. In fact, fuel expenses can account for as much as 25 percent of a company’s operating costs. Fuel is expensive, but it is necessary.
The cost we pay at the fuel pump is largely out of our control. Consumers have watched fuel prices rise and fall like a wild roller coaster ride over the past several years. There is nothing we can do to influence the price of a gallon of diesel fuel.