I’m thinking of buying an enclosed cargo trailer instead of a van. Right now I have a pick up that I have to load and unload for each job.
I can get a 6x4 enclosed cargo trailer for around $1500 new. For those of you who use trailers, what size would you recommend. I want it to grow with the company so be able to hold WFP equipment and pressure washing equipment.
How about ladder racks for trailers? I haven’t done any search on that yet so I’m not sure what’s available out there.
I’d love to see some pictures of your set up as well.
I have a trailer, and I love it…but if I could have gotton a van I would have bought a van. Have you seen the set ups these guys have in the vans? Same as the trailers, which are nice, but the wear and tear of pulling the trailer all the time I dont like, haveing to hook it up and park it all the time, having to find bigger parking spaces all the time, having a hard time turning in small streets all the time- really makes it a pain in the butt. It looks great, but so does a van and you can fit everything you need in it. You can see a picture of mine on my website Professional Window Cleaning Services Of San Diego-Elite Window Washing
The van idea is more and more intriguing. Just checked on Autotrader, and there is a Ford E150 with ladder rack and interior shelves that I could get for less than 4k. High mileage and 6 years old but should pay for itself over the next year or two.
You also mentioned pressure washing. Depending on what type of pressure washing you’re doing, it’s going to be hard to fit it all in a van with the wfp set up. Maybe a small pressure washing trailer in addition to the van would be cool. We have a very nice compact PW trailer that is easy to maneuver and pull with the truck. I’ll post pics of it later today.
Man, I’m glad all these opinions are being spewed out.
I keep thinking :pickup truck and trailer. Or maybe an extended length van.
My problem is I have a full-size van Ford E350, but it’s a passenger van. I wish now I would have bought a cargo van, but regularly had a crew of four at the time so I needed the 2nd row. It is completely frustrating what a mess I end up with a few days after ‘reorganizing’ things.
Trailer is a pain to load and unload every day, but all this week I have been dropping the trailer at the jobs for the guys to keep working while i go keep an eye on some other jobs, so that’s a benefit a van won’t provide, unless you plan on having multiple vans. Also in the event of a mechanical failure, any vehicle with a hitch will still get you to work.
Four wheel drive is a must up here, and as sweet as the Quigley conversions are, I could buy alot of trailers for that price.
Also take into account how many ladders you are going to be hauling, the weight and impact on your suspension and drive train can be surprising. Very few paved roads up here, but Ive destroyed multiple CV axles on the four wheel drive Aerostar and even ripped the shock mount off my axle on my Jeep, it can also wreak havoc on your shocks and front end. Going to the trailer takes that force off of the vehicles. But if your picking up a used van, if you can pick up an e350 that would be better in the long run.
We’ve used a trailer for two years now for all our WFP work. Can’t be beat it for what we do. No moving of carts, hundreds of feet of hose (supply and pure water) easily accessible, pressure washer, water heater, spare parts, etc. And you stay organized. I agree with the earlier post: Drop the trailer and its crew, and then take the truck elsewhere for conventional work.
In The U,S,A, i picket up a folding trailor from one of your main line tool department stores found in every city. cost of $375 dollars for the frame wheels and all running parts. up grade the wheels $45 dollars each and build your own body for it they make a nice 8x5 trailor. for under $600 dollars then you custom make it as you like. also has the advantage of folding up and can be stored in a small space between jobs. does it work well i had 2 ton on it from Vegas to Victoria canada. with no problems
Trip hazards can be a major liablity issue with WFP work. 2 years ago we had a elderly woman climb thru barriers, around signs, all the while her husband telling her not to (don’t ask me why). She tripped on a wfp hose and cracked her head on the sidewalk…right in front of the hospital cafeteria at lunch time. The good news is she was OK; just a stitch, no concusion. The hospital’s risk manager came out to explain that since we had signs and barriers seen by half the staff in the cafeteria THEY would take care of her injury AND ANY FUTURE ISSUES RESULTING FROM IT. They put this in writing, removing us from the case.
As you can imagine, we hyper careful about trip hazards: mats over every hose, warning signs, and we go to the air whenever possible, as shown below.
I have been using a trailer for a couple of years now. I like having one. Aside from the great ad space (yet to get mine lettered). It allows me to leave everything locked up and not have to load and unload the truck. When I have small jobs I will load the truck with only that days required equipment. I got mine from craigslist used for $900.00. The only thing I dont like about having one is the tolls. In NJ they charge you extra for each axle. And I dont like the gas it uses. But again it’s much better then loading the truck everyday.