What To Look For in Heavy Machinery Shipping Companies

Published on
May 11, 2023
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When it’s time to ship heavy machinery, like bulldozers, cranes, excavators, and forklifts, you don’t want to put your expensive equipment in the wrong hands. Heavy machinery is the large industrial equipment used in mining, agriculture, construction, and similar industries, so unique shipping requirements must be considered. Finding a shipping company with experience in heavy machinery is essential so you can rest assured that your shipment will arrive safe and sound.Before choosing a company to transport your equipment, you must research key factors that’ll tell you whether they fit your needs well. Let’s take a closer look at how to ship heavy equipment with the right heavy machinery shipping companies.

Factors to consider in choosing a heavy machinery shipping company

While many companies may offer heavy machinery shipping services, they don’t all have the same features. Here are the key factors to investigate when searching for and choosing a heavy machinery shipping company.

Experience and expertise

Experience and expertise are two major factors you can’t overlook. You want to choose a shipping company with years of experience in transporting heavy machinery. This company should have a specialty in heavy machinery and a proven track record of shipping heavy machinery efficiently.When considering different companies, explore their depth of knowledge regarding regulations and requirements for heavy machinery transport. There are strict guidelines for this type of shipping, so any company you want to work with should know how to navigate these regulations.Flock Freight, for example, helps you find experienced carriers who know these laws and regulations. Still, if you need assistance, you can get reliable support from your dedicated representative on anything and everything.

Equipment and resources

Any shipping company you want to work with should offer its own specialized equipment and resources for heavy machinery transport. A company specializing in machinery shipping should already have an adequate fleet of appropriate trucks and trailers, like flatbed trailers or lowboy trailers.Choosing a company with lifting equipment for safely unloading and loading heavy machinery is also crucial. Always ask about their equipment availability and resources to ensure your shipment arrives on time.

Insurance and liability coverage

You want to work with a company offering insurance and liability coverage to protect your heavy machinery during shipment. Inquire about the types of insurance provided, like cargo or liability insurance. The coverage available should be enough to cover the value of your machinery.It’s also a good idea to consider the limits of liability coverage. Liability coverage refers to the amount of money the shipping company will pay in the event of loss or damage. This number should be adequate for your needs.Read and understand the terms and conditions of the insurance policy before agreeing to do business with any company.

Shared truckload optionality

Some shippers struggle to find a heavy machinery shipping solution that fits their needs.You may opt for less than truckload (LTL) shipping, but this can result in high accessorial fees and an increased risk of damage to your expensive equipment. An alternative to this is a dedicated full truckload (FTL) service for heavy machinery, but this may be too expensive for some shippers.Another option is Flock Freight’s shared truckload (STL) service if your heavy machinery can ship without a flatbed. This provides additional flexibility and cost savings when compared to LTL and FTL. You can ship your heavy machinery from the origin to the destination without any stops or transfers, reducing the risk of damage and giving you more control over the whole process.Some of the other benefits of Flock Freight’s STL service include:

  • Shippers only pay for the space they need (saving up to 20% compared to truckload).
  • Deliveries are on time 30% more often than with LTL.
  • STLs incur 8.7x less damage than LTLs.
  • Easy booking is available online with integrated tech.
  • Shippers can track deliveries in real-time to make empowered business decisions.

Freight quote

Cost is a huge factor when considering heavy machinery shipping companies. Some factors influencing freight quotes include:

  • The size or weight of machinery.
  • The distance of transport.
  • Special handling or equipment requirements.
  • The time of year (seasonality).
  • Insurance coverage requirements.

To make sure a heavy machinery freight quote is competitive and fair, you should look at quotes from different shipping companies. You can request a detailed breakdown of the costs and ask about potential discounts or special offers.The cheapest way to ship heavy equipment may not always be the best option, especially if it means sacrificing quality. But, if you choose to ship with an STL instead of a traditional TL, Flock Freight can help you enjoy more on-time deliveries at cheaper fares.

Reviews and testimonials

Companies with a track record of success and good reputations in the industry could be better options for shippers wanting to ship heavy machinery. By looking at online reviews and ratings, you can find out how previous customers or others in the industry feel about different shipping companies. This information provides valuable insights into the company’s service level, reliability, and customer satisfaction.Reviews and ratings can also help you see patterns, such as recurring comments or complaints about similar circumstances. Testimonials and positive reviews are beneficial to showcasing expertise in handling heavy machinery, giving you peace of mind. Additionally, if the company already has a reputation as being the best of the best in the industry, you can feel confident in your decision.With Flock Freight, you can work with experienced carriers who adhere to your standards. This means less damage, fewer fees, and more predictable deliveries.

Additional services

When you choose a heavy machinery shipping company, you may also want to opt for professionals offering additional services. Here are some common additional services carriers may provide.

Loading and unloading services

A huge service many shippers appreciate in their heavy machinery shipping company is loading and unloading services. These processes are often where the machinery is most vulnerable to damage, so safety measures are essential. You can ask about the company's expertise in these processes, the equipment they use, and any additional fees.

Storage and warehousing services

Some shipping companies may offer storage and warehousing services, meaning you can keep your heavy machinery in one spot for some time before transporting it to the final destination. This service can be valuable for shippers who don’t have a lot of their own storage space.If this is a feature you want to explore, make sure the heavy machinery shipping company has security with measures like fencing, security cameras, or security monitoring. You should also ensure the company has climate-controlled storage or warehousing options for machinery affected by temperature or humidity changes.

Customized shipping solutions

There is no “one-size-fits-all” solution for heavy machinery shipping, especially since different equipment types have their own requirements and challenges. So, you should work with a shipping company that offers customized shipping solutions to meet your unique needs.Examples of customized shipping solutions include specialized handling or packaging and expedited heavy-duty shipping. Working with a company that can meet your needs will help reduce downtime and minimize disruptions to business operations, making it easier to meet deadlines.

Revolutionize your heavy machinery shipping with Flock Freight's expert insights

Every shipper wants to know that their heavy machinery will arrive at its destination safely. Choosing heavy machinery shipping companies with experience, expertise, and the right equipment will keep your mind at ease.With so many factors to consider, you may feel like finding the perfect carrier option is impossible. But with Flock Freight, you can get matched with carriers that meet your exact criteria with top contracted rates.Our innovative approach to shipping and our commitment to customer satisfaction solve many of the issues shippers like you face every day. Ready to start shipping heavy machinery with professional, vetted carriers? Get started today.

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