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How Do I Choose the Best Used Backhoe Loader?

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  • Written By: Jordan Weagly
  • Edited By: A. Joseph
  • Last Modified Date: 12 November 2016
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Backhoe loaders are often essential to many projects that require digging or moving around large amounts of material. They are a popular piece of heavy equipment, so finding a used backhoe loader should be easy. Determining which used backhoe loader is best might be the challenge, however. To choose the best backhoe loader, it usually is important to consider the overall appearance, engine condition, front and back tool condition and other physical attributes. It might also be helpful to consider the used backhoe loader's history related to the advertised price.

Overall, the best used backhoe loader should look worn but not abused. Look for rust, especially rust that could potentially affect the stability or resilience of the machine. Writing down the manufacturer, model number and age can help when considering the price of the backhoe loader compared with its potential performance. The overall appearance of internal components can also indicate the best used backhoe loader in comparison with others.

Different types of backhoes have different engines, but checking the engine and tractor condition will almost always help when you are trying to determine the best used backhoe loader. The engine should be in good condition with a minimum of known or obvious issues. If possible, locate the machine’s service history to determine whether it has been well maintained. Any inherent problems should be addressed before you buy a used backhoe loader.

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Beyond the engine and the tractor, the front and rear tools usually should be examined. The best backhoe loader will often have a fully functioning bucket or shovel in the front and a fully functioning backhoe in the back. Machines with standard tool carriers or quick couplers for multiple tools should have all of the necessary connectors. Additionally, the hydraulic system that supports all of the tools should also be in good condition.

The best backhoe loader will also have physical features that support the type of work to be performed. For instance, four-wheel drive is usually necessary in situations where the backhoe loader will have to drive on mud, loose dirt or other unstable materials, and two-wheel drive might be enough for smaller operations. The best machine will also have the power, the operating weight range and the digging depth range relevant to your potential projects.

Another important consideration is how long a backhoe loader will last after purchase. The best used backhoe will be reasonably priced based on how long it will last. For instance, a barely working backhoe loader with some new parts might be bought for cheap so that parts can be taken from it later. Asking about where and how the backhoe loader was used can help when determining how long it will last.

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