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Heavy equipment is very expensive if you purchase it in brand new condition.
This is the reason that most people prefer buying heavy equipment. You must however be careful about certain things even while you are buying heavy equipment at auction.
Age: Age of the equipment is easily the most important thing you must consider. Age must not only be considered in calendar years but also in the terms of usage units. Usage units are counted in hours of usage. As the machinery is used, its parts tend to wear.
This may be fast wear and tear in case of belts and such rubber parts of slow in case of metallic parts. You must check the degree of wear and tear that a machine has gone through before bidding for it.
Usage History: The second main thing that you must consider in such a deal. As a rule of thumb the heavy equipment is built very sturdily. It can withstand most of the wear and tear of normal usage. Generally for heavy equipment, normal usage means exposure to extreme conditions.
It is however not consider rough handling. You must understand the difference between usage in rough conditions and rough handling
While the former involves use of equipment in tough terrain, the latter means general negligence in the manner in which equipment is handles. Naturally while the former is considered acceptable, the latter is not as it exposes machinery to undue stress. If equipment has been roughly handled, purchasing it is a foolish decision.
Price Differential: The main reason that you opt for buying heavy equipment at auction is the low cost involved. However this is more like a compromise between lesser price and decreased lifetime of device. It is not really a great idea to purchase heavy equipment at auction unless the price to value factor is favorable along with the overall price differential.
Naturally purchasing new machine is better in comparison to a nearly priced machine at auction.
Technology Used In The Equipment: Heavy equipment is one area where technology advances at a blinding pace. You could not want to invest your money on equipment which has aging or outdated technology. It is not a great idea to spend big money buying heavy equipment at auction and still be leasing the equipment because what you purchased comes with outdated technology.
Generally the auctioneers perform extensive testing on the equipment they are about to auction. Keep in mind that you may be required to raise money from loans and such means even for buying heavy equipment at auction. Ask the auctioneers for the results of their testing and always cross check before the hammer falls.