May 9, 2019

Goodbye, Winter. Hello, Spring Rentals.

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A Guide to Renting Equipment for Your Spring Yard Work

early spring yard workSpring is here, and that means yard-work season.

Lawn care, landscaping and outdoor renovations require a lot of heavy lifting, hauling and digging. Home and property owners know that early spring is the perfect time to fire up those engines and get to work on their yards.

Professional landscapers are gearing up for the same jobs but on a much larger scale. With several projects to fulfill each week, teams need fast access to efficient tools suited for every purpose.

Whether you’re facing renovations, heavy outdoor construction, transplanting or removing trees, or any other form of heavy lifting, you’ll need the right tools for the job. But why buy when you can rent?

Renting equipment is the best way to complete your landscaping projects. Take care of your yard’s needs as efficiently as possible, without having to worry about researching and committing to expensive units.

If you want reliable, quality equipment, look to Cat® products. Altorfer CAT has everything you need for those spring renovations, including compact, medium and full-size units with additional attachments.

Not sure what you need to rent? We’ve got you covered. This guide will help you identify the right rental equipment for your intended uses and space.

Rent a Mini Excavator

Mini excavators provide you with the digging capabilities of a full-size excavator at a more easily maneuverable size.

These compact machines come in multiple different sizes and weights, depending on their use. Because mini excavators are smaller, they endure less stress than a larger excavator, giving them a longer lifespan and less need for repair.

But in this case, small is also mighty. With operating weights ranging from 2,000 to 19,000 pounds, these compact units are sure to meet your needs efficiently.

By switching out the bucket for a different attachment, you can make an excavator more versatile. There are several bucket, blade and hammer attachments available for you to rent alongside the machine. Excavators are also available with either tracks or wheels, and the bucket sizes range from 12 to 24 inches in width.

Some of the benefits of renting a mini excavator include the ability to work in small or tightly packed sites and the relative ease of transport, as they are much smaller and lighter than their larger counterparts. Their size also does less damage to topsoil, making them perfect for yards and areas with established grass.

With a mini excavator, you can tackle demolition projects, install a pool or hot tub, dig holes or trenches for planting and take care of other general landscaping processes.

Rent a Forklift

Forklifts are perfect for both indoor and outdoor environments, depending on the model. They come in several models, named for their power source and tire type. Each model has different weight capacities for lifting.

These various models include:

  • Electric cushion tire: The lightest weight, with a lift capacity ranging from 3,000 to 12,000 pounds. Also, the most environmentally friendly option.
  • Internal combustion cushion tire: The middleweight, with a lift capacity ranging from 3,000 to 17,500 pounds.
  • Internal combustion pneumatic tire: The heaviest weight, with a lift capacity ranging from 3,000 to 35,000 pounds, and the best option for outdoor uses.

Tires make a difference in where and how you can operate a forklift. Cushion tire lifts are low to the ground and do better on flat surfaces, while pneumatic tire lifts have more clearance, better traction and perform well in uneven, outdoor environments.

Available attachments improve the versatility of these machines. These attachments include brooms, dust mops and plows, used for anything from sweeping and clearing areas to shifting materials.

Forklifts are mainly for moving and lifting a broad variety of indoor and outdoor materials, such as lumber. In a pinch, they may also be used to lift workers to higher levels, if used safely and in line with regulations.

Rent a Boom Lift

Boom lifts are particularly useful when workers are dealing with heights. Whether you need it for reaching tall structures or trimming tree branches, a boom lift can make all the difference.

boom lift guide

There are several varieties of boom lift to choose from when renting:

  • Articulating: Available in electric and engine models, articulating booms are useful in indoor and outdoor environments. They feature multi-section arms with multiple hinges, making precise movements a breeze. The range of motion and controllability make this machine perfect for confined areas.
  • Telescopic: Better suited for rough terrain, telescoping booms are counterweighted, keeping them balanced with more weight than an articulating boom. They also feature heavy-duty chassis, keeping transport as smooth as possible, even over rough surfaces.
  • Trailer-mounted: Having a boom lift mounted on a trailer makes any transport easy. The trailers are naturally compact, so you won’t need to worry about space limitations. The mount helps broaden your reach, making the boom capable of moving over, up and out with ease.

Articulating booms are best for outdoor and industrial sites, or anywhere precise motion and high extension is necessary. They are also exceptional at accessing difficult to reach areas or spaces blocked on the ground by barriers and immovable objects.

Telescopic booms are best for getting workers to points of limited access, or anywhere with a need for further horizontal reach. They work well for maneuvering in tight spaces. Platform heights range from 29 to 150 feet, and the booms rotate from the base, allowing for adjustment while extended.

Rent a Utility Task Vehicle

Utility task vehicles (UTV) are designed for hauling and towing heavy loads of materials across rough, outdoor terrain. They can access tighter areas than trucks and are easy to operate, letting you and your team work more efficiently.

Far cheaper to rent, maintain and fuel than trucks, UTVs provide ample hauling capacity, allowing for up to 1,000 pounds in the steel rear cargo space and 2,000 pounds of towing weight.

These are perfect for working on large areas of land, where moving or hauling tools, machines and materials becomes more difficult. With reliable springs and shocks, UTVs provide a comfortable ride for passengers and drivers, all while working hard.

UTV rentals are available in two-wheel drive, four-wheel drive and four-wheel drive lock, which locks the front and rear wheels together. They can also run on either gas or diesel and have the capacity to seat two to five people.

Rent a Scissor Lift

Scissor lifts — also known as skyjacks — work like their name says. Supports configured in a crisscrossing pattern expand and contract to raise and lower a platform, generally occupied by workers. The motion is similar to an accordion — or a pair of scissors.

These lifts provide a broad, stable platform to hoist and lower materials and people to high areas. While they are only capable of vertical lifting, they provide a safer alternative to ladders or scaffolding. Their heavy bases ensure zero tipping and act as an anchor for the elevated platform.

electric vs rough terrainTwo main varieties of forklift are available:

  • Electric: Better suited for indoor application, such as maintenance or reaching high storage areas. Electric lifts are environmentally friendly, much quieter than alternatives and easy to maneuver in cramped spaces.
  • Rough terrain: Better suited for outdoor application and performs well on sloped, uneven or muddy terrain. These lifts generally have larger platforms and heavier lifting capability.

Scissor lifts are notably compact, as the base and platform of the machine share the same width and length dimensions. Since they only lift vertically, they’ll fit wherever the base can go.

Platform heights range from 19 to 50 feet, making these lifts ideal for smaller jobs. Typical applications of scissor lifts include painting, pressure washing and sandblasting — perfect for sprucing up any house or building that needs a little TLC.

While they don’t have much versatility or range, they are the safest form of lift available.

Rent a Telehandler

Telehandlers — also commonly referred to as rough terrain forklifts — can reach higher and haul heavier weights than a forklift without going to the extreme of renting a crane.

Exceedingly practical, these machines are most often used in construction, storage, agricultural fields and forestry. Unlike other lifts, the boom must be operated entirely from a cab located on the body.

Unlike boom lifts, the extending boom is not able to swivel. Operators must line up the entire machine to reach high spaces accurately. However, all four wheels turn with dual-axle steering, allowing for an extremely tight turn radius. Additionally, operators can adjust the fork at the end of the boom to tilt, swivel and slide materials into better positioning.

Their ability to lift heavy loads, with rated capacities ranging from 5,500 to 12,000 pounds, makes them efficient machines. Telehandlers are equipped to attach a variety of work tools to replace the fork function, including platforms for capabilities similar to the scissor lift, buckets for scooping and loading and tackles for crane functionalities.

Telehandler lifts can reach a height range of 18 to 55 feet, making them perfect for projects that require both an average height and weight capacity.

Rent a Wheel Loader

Wheel loaders — also referred to as bucket loaders or front-end loaders — are heavy hitters for agricultural and landscaping purposes. Available in compact and medium-sized models, these machines haul heavy loads with ease.

High-pressure hydraulics allow for more force behind the bucket than other loaders. They also feature center point articulation for ease of turning and box-section frames that reduce stress and absorb shock while the loader is in motion.

Choosing between compact and medium-sized models means saving money and increasing efficiency. With your choice of models, you can find the right attributes for your needs.

medium vs compact equipment

Renting a compact wheel loader has all the benefits of a smaller machine. Electronically controlled hydrostatic transmissions allow for easily adjustable power and ground speed control. Predictable hydraulics self-adjust flow and pressure to work demands. Displays in the vehicle feature real-time machine information as you work, including fuel usage, adjustments of functions and a backup camera monitor.

Medium-sized wheel loaders offer the same functionality as the compact sizes, but with a heavier counterweight, allowing you to haul heavier loads and increase your team’s efficiency.

As size increases, so does hauling capability. Rated load capacities for the buckets range from about 1.2 to 2.5 cubic yards for compact sizes and 2.5 to 6.5 cubic yards for medium-size.

Rent a Skid Steer Loader

Skid steer loaders are the do-it-all machine for your needs. With many models to choose from and optimal versatility, this machine can handle whatever you need it to do.

These loaders excel at landscaping and agriculture processes. Skid steers are perfect for digging, loading, earthmoving and handling heavy materials. They are one of the best machines for working on rough terrain, and they also have excellent load retention, keeping your cargo where it needs to be.

Advanced hydraulic systems allow for maximum power in lifting and hauling, and ensure reliability for you and your workers. If you’re looking for strength, a skid steer loader has what you need. The operating capacities of various models range from about 1,500 to 3,700 pounds.

Specialized buckets and attachments are available to make these powerhouses even more versatile. The many options include backhoes, pallet forks, augers, rippers, grapples, snow blowers and more.

If you don’t need that much strength but want the functionality of a skid steer, walk-behind mini skid steers are a compact version, perfect for smaller-scale landscaping. The compact size saves space and gives you the capability to work in smaller areas. They perform well for augering, stump grinding, earth moving and soil cultivation.

The Benefits of Renting Equipment

The question remains — what makes renting machinery better than buying?

Renting gives you access to guaranteed quality equipment without requiring any long-term investment — in money, storage or maintenance.

Buying machines new is a significant expense. Buying them used can be both expensive and problematic. Renting is a smaller cost and lower commitment, enabling you to try machines before deciding on a major purchase or simply use and return them. Facilities also keep a close record of machine use and repair, ensuring you don’t get stuck with any issues.

Homeowners and landscapers also face the issue of storage space, but that issue doesn’t exist with renting. You won’t have to worry about storage fees, emptying your garage or building an entirely new shed to fit that new machine.

Maintaining a machine can be even more daunting than using it. Quality equipment needs quality repairs, all of which are taken care of by trained technicians at a rental facility. You’ll get a working, well-oiled machine every time — no troubleshooting necessary.

Knowing your equipment will be reliable every time you need it is easy with rental services. All you have to do is request a machine, use it for its intended purpose to your heart’s content, and return it.

Trust Altorfer CAT With Your Rental Equipment Needs

request a machine to rentAltorfer CAT offers all of this equipment and more, making sure you have the right tools for all of your spring yard work.

Professional Caterpillar® technicians regularly service and maintain our rentals, so you’ll receive young, well-working equipment. On average, our fleet is 24 months old, meaning you have access to the newest technology available as industry upgrades occur.

Our experienced rental specialists will provide you with a detailed comparison of all our models, ensuring each machine and tool matches your job specs.

We also offer a rent-to-own program, where we apply part of your rental fees to a downpayment, should you choose to purchase any equipment.

Visit our equipment rental page for more information and to browse our various machinery.