Telehandlers for Snow Removal

October 16, 2019

Construction equipment VS snow removal equipment.

What makes construction equipment different from snow removal equipment? Is there a specific trait that separates one equipment type from another? Or is it simply the use of the equipment itself that categorizes it? If you put telehandlers in the snow, do they become telehandlers for snow removal? Well, as we have seen with tractors, it does. 

As the demand for efficiency bleeds from construction into other construction-related fields, operators are responding by using equipment in new ways. The movement from trucks with plows to tractors with plows was a massive transition for snow removal; the level of efficiency and cost saving that came with this transition was extraordinary. 

A shift in the industry is happening once again. Trends indicate that this will bring another dimension of efficiency into the snow removal industry, far beyond what the tractor did. 

Telehandlers. 

That’s right. Telehandlers. The first telehandler was a two-wheel drive machine which combined the forklift, crane and backhoe into one Frankenstein machine. It was used a lot in warehouses and commercial buildings to lift materials to new heights. 

It then gained popularity in the agriculture industry as a machine that could handle heavy bucket loads like a wheel loader and stack hay bales higher than a tractor or fork lift. It is speedy and can fit into tight spaces like a skid-steer, but does so much more. Farmers could even attach a trailer to it if they really wanted. 

These same benefits are what drew the attention of contractors who found that the versatile and compact machine could be used on construction sites. 

What we are seeing now is that these same benefits are drawing the equipment into snow removal: power and efficiency is just as important in the snow.

4 Reasons You Should Use Telehandlers For Snow Removal

There are 4 ways that Telehandlers are great for snow removal: speed, fuel efficiency, lifting capacity and maneuverability.

Telehandlers have many attachments which help them move and remove snow efficiently. 
Photo borrowed from Canadian Mining & Energy.

Speed

Telehandlers can travel up to 40km (24.8 miles) per hour. For an industry that relies on equipment to move along routes and travel from site to site, this kind of travel speed truly sets the telehandler apart from other equipment types.

Being able to reduce the travel time between sites is going to help you and your snow removal business work as quickly and efficiently as possible while still being able to meet the expectations of your contracts.

Fuel Efficiency

According to the Caterpillar performance handbook the fuel efficiency in a telehandler rivals that of tractors, backhoes and even some skid steers. Not only does it save money by getting more work out of a single tank of fuel, it also means less time travelling for fuel, actually fueling up, and then getting back to site to continue with the job. This time saved is money saved as well. 

Lifting Capacity

The very nature of telehandlers is to be able to lift and move materials up. Telehandlers are made to have a lifting capacity of 4,400 to 12,000 pounds. A cubic yard of snow can way around 1,200 pounds. Light material buckets for telehandlers can hold over 3 cubic yards – so close to 4,000 lbs of snow.

If this is at the lower end of the lifting power of a telehandler, then this means that the machine can operate at minimum power and achieve maximum fuel efficiency while moving full buckets of snow.

For pushing snow and lifting it, there is really no better machine. The telehandler makes moving snow look like a walk in the park. Check out this video of a telehandler clearing snow to see just how easy it is. 

Maneuverability

Telehandlers are compact machines who move as swiftly as a skid steer. They are four-wheel drive machines made for rough terrain: basically, they were made for the snow. Even if it’s the first equipment on site, they won’t have a problem getting the job started and finished.

Telehandlers are a powerful type of snow removal equipment. Telehandlers have great maneuverability in the snow.
Photo borrowed from SMH Merlot.

They can fit into tight locations like parking structures that have low clearance and sharp turns. When plowing and gathering snow with the arm lowered, visibility from the cab is good which makes for safe operation and easy driving for the operator.

Believe it or not, parking structures gather snow in the corners of each floor as the wind blows in through open sections. The top floor of a parking structure also needs to be cleared. Only a compact machine could fit through the clearance allowance and be able to both gather snow and lift it up and over the side Telehandlers are able to do this, and do so with a large bucket to get the job done quickly. 

Two Pieces of Equipment In One

What it really comes down to with the telehandler is that you get two pieces of equipment in one: you get the push and gather power of a tractor or truck with the scooping and gathering ability of a bucket loader. 

When it comes down to snow removal, the ability to both gather and scoop snow all with the same equipment can make snow relocation a whole lot easier. Their value is especially apparent in the ability to build proper snow piles.

Best Kept Snow Piles

Instead of driving snow into a pile like you would with a tractor and a plow, telehandler arms facilitate the lift needed to stack snow and build a pile up and back. It reduces the spread of a snow pile base, minimizing the loss of space around a pile. As long as the pile is not impeding visibility by growing so high, you can just keep on stacking it up. 

Telehandlers can pile snow like no other piece of snow equipment. Get unmatched peaks with this powerful tool.

The more efficient your snow piles are, the less often you need to relocate your snow. Ideally, the telehandler can reduce the need to transport snow from a pile into a dump truck and move it off site.

If you do need to relocate snow piles or use transition zones for clearing larger lots, then the telehandler can facilitate that as well. No need to rent a separate front loader while your plow sits idle on the side of the site; do it all with one piece of equipment. 

 

Cost Benefit Of Telehandlers For Snow Removal

Needing only one piece of equipment to complete the job of two is more cost effective, reduces labour costs and makes a worksite safer. It can reduce wait times between gathering the snow and stacking it properly. This makes a difference not only in your own overhead costs as a contractor – renting another piece of equipment, hiring someone to drive it, etc – but can make your lower-cost of operation more appealing when bidding on snow removal contracts. 

Telehandlers are also cheaper or comparable to rent than other snow clearing machines. The cost savings for telehandlers are sure to set your snow season up for success.

Equipment Is What You Make It

Tractors were never marketed for snow removal. Today they are seen as one of the most efficient pieces of equipment for clearing snow. Telehandlers are the same; just because they aren’t really used for snow removal doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be. 

The telehandler is set up to become the next best type of equipment for snow removal, especially for large projects. They are powerful machines with the benefit of being able to move, plow, gather, and lift snow all with a single machine. 

With all jobs, it is important to have the best type of equipment for the job.

When it comes to snow, the telehandler is the way to go.

Equipment Is What You Make It

Tractors were never marketed for snow removal. Today they are seen as one of the most efficient pieces of equipment for clearing snow. Telehandlers are the same; just because they aren’t really used for snow removal doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be. 

Start using telehandlers for snow removal to stay ahead of the industry. The telehandlers is set up to become the next best type of equipment for snow removal, especially for large projects. They are powerful machines with the benefit of being able to move, plow, gather, and lift snow all with a single machine. 

With all jobs, it is important to have the best type of equipment for the job.

It’s clear that telehandlers for snow removal is the way to go.

Brent Giles

Brent Giles is Director of Customer Success at DOZR. He is a veteran in the landscape and snow industry with over 20 years experience. Brent’s favourite piece of equipment is the wheel loader because of its versatility and year-round applications. His favourite thing about working at DOZR is being able to disrupt the industry and provide equipment rentals to people in a whole new way. Brent’s love of the outdoors goes beyond the construction industry and his favourite way to spend a Saturday is fishing with his family.

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recent Posts

Cranes: Everything You Need To Know

Cranes: Everything You Need To Know

Cranes have been around for over 2000 years. One of the f equipment that hasn’t really changed since it’s invention, the crane is a mighty machine which can take credit for all the amazing buildings we build today. Allowing us to touch the skies and build to new heights, the crane is a pretty awesome piece of equipment.

Read Time: 8 Minutes

The Truck: Everything You Need To Know

The Truck: Everything You Need To Know

Trucks of all sizes and capacities are beneficial on construction sites. From moving materials to transporting employees, trucks have many uses on site. Learn everything about trucks, including popular models and the history of the truck, here.

Read Time: 7 Minutes

Cranes: Everything You Need To Know

Cranes: Everything You Need To Know

Cranes have been around for over 2000 years. One of the f equipment that hasn’t really changed since it’s invention, the crane is a mighty machine which can take credit for all the amazing buildings we build today. Allowing us to touch the skies and build to new heights, the crane is a pretty awesome piece of equipment.

Read Time: 8 Minutes