I started BNR Commercial Cleaning a little over a year ago here in SW Manitoba. I've been steadily growing. However I'm starting to wonder about my choice of transportation. Right now I'm driving a '97 Dodge Ram. It's in very good shape (for being about 13 years old). It's been serving me well, however yesterday it was raining all day and most of the night. And I have a couple clients who have no where for me to keep my cleaning supplies at there building. So I need to hall some things around. And with the rain yesterday, the cab of my truck was jam packed with garbage bags, dust mops, vacuums, etc. lol. Must have looked quite comical, however not too professional.
I've been trying to decide what the best route would be, either getting an enclosed trailer, or buying a van or SUV to keep things dry and safe when travelling. I need to haul around an autoscrubber or two every now and then. So the trailer would be great. But having to hook up and unhook everyday would be a pain in the butt. And just hauling supplies for S/W jobs, etc.
Anyways, I was just wondering what some of you on the website use for transportation, or what you think the best vehicle would be for our profession. I look forward to your thoughts, and maybe pics of your work vehicles now. Pics always make for good ideas, and free advertising.
Well, like you I am cheap, Ha Ha I 'm driving a 97 Dodge Ram B2500 cargo van. It works very well for the business and can carry one or two swing machines along with my 17" autoscrubber. I am looking at switching soon but am deciding whether to go with the new Dodge/Mercedes van or switch to GM or Ford. Have also considered a truck and trailer set up but consider it would be difficult in the city.
I agree, a truck and trailer set up would be difficult in the city. I used to drive semi, so pulling the trailer doesn't bother me at all, but the parking situation would likely be difficult in the city. I'm in a town of only 3500 people. So I need to leave town to do some of my contracts, so the fuel mileage plays a factor for me as well. I was thinking of just putting a 'cap' on my truck so I could haul stuff without getting wet or snow covered. But that's a really high lift to get a auto scrubber in the back. I have a 17" and a 24", also trying to sell a 33" kent, but may need to haul it around till it's gone.
I over the years have had all sorts of transportation for my business. I have had nice vans lettered up nice, box trucks, pickups with campers, and pickups without campers. Vans are nice for general cleaning; box truck is great for carpet equipment and truck mounted unit; regular truck is great for going out to do bids. But when it comes to stripping floors or going out to do maint/buffing , nothing beats a trailer with a ramp door on the back, spring loaded that is for easy closing of the ramp. We have used them for years, in big cities and small cities. On very rare occasions it may be a little hard to get parked but there are usually ways that can be figured out. Trailers are a little intimidating if you have not pulled one. It does not take long to get use to them. I hired a new guy once that was horrified at having to pull the 6X8 trailer. He worked for me for three months and then went to a two week school and became a truck driver pulling a 60ft trailer. Trailers have much much more room then vans. You can stand up in them and mount brackets, hangers , shelves on the walls. You can hang things from the ceilings. One thing to keep in mind is that the bigger the trailer the easier it is to back up. All this is my opinion from my experience. You can be cheap as Bill puts it and still own a trailer nice trailer for around $2000.00
Another note is that your vehicle insurance from what my agent said, is only covered in an accident as long as the trailer remains connected to the vehicle. If it comes loose than insurance does not cover it. That is why I have a separate policy for my trailers.
The choice size enclosed trailer I like is 6x10for all stripping equip. I would not go no smaller than a 5X8 for buffing/maint. trailer. You can also get them with extra height added on. They also make a great traveling Billboard. Look at trailer pics on our website at bottom of page titled , "Services".