Construction mats, also referred to as access mats, crane mats, or equipment mats, serve a few important purposes. They protect the environment from the harm that could be caused by heavy equipment, create temporary roads and bridges, and provide a stable platform for heavy equipment to ensure safe operation.
While it’s usually obvious when a construction firm or contractor needs construction mats, it can be more difficult for business owners and independent equipment operators to determine whether they should buy mats or rent them for individual projects. Read on to find a few questions contractors or business owners can ask themselves whose answers will help clarify which solution will be a better fit.
How Long Will the Mats Be Used?
First, determine how long the project will take to complete. As a general rule of thumb, contractors should purchase mats for any project that will take six months or longer to finish. Spartan Mat offers a wide variety of new and used construction mats and also offers rental options for those who decide it’s not worth the money to buy the products outright.
Those who want a more precise idea of how much they will pay can add the amount of rent they will pay to the cost of shipping the mats back to the rental company. If it is approaching the amount of money it would cost to buy the mats outright, that’s usually a better choice.
How Likely Are the Mats to Break?
Most rental companies charge clients the price of the mats if they break, so it’s important to take the likelihood of this happening into account. There are many factors that influence how well construction mats will stand up to use, including the age of the mat, the number of times it will be moved throughout the project timeline, what type of machines will be placed on it, and whether it will be sitting in the mud.
Companies that plan to use their mats heavily in less-than-ideal environmental conditions should expect some breakage, even if they rent high-quality products. Ask the rental company about its policy regarding broken mats and consider the particulars of the job in question before deciding whether to rent or to buy.
How Much Will It Cost to Ship the Mats?
Rented construction mats must be shipped to and from the job site, and renters are often responsible for paying the return freight. If the rental company is far away, the cost of shipping the mats back after the job has been completed can make a huge difference when it comes to economic feasibility.
How Often Will the Mats Be Used?
All other things considered, if a company needs to use construction mats on a regular basis, it’s worth buying them instead of renting them. When renting other types of equipment, contractors can take advantage of perks like not having to deal with maintenance and equipment breakdowns, but since most rental companies require renters to pay for broken mats, this is a different story. As long as the company has a safe place to store them, buying mats will save money on shipping.
The Bottom Line
There’s no one right answer to the question of whether it’s more economically viable to buy or rent construction mats. Every situation is different. Contractors and business owners should now have a better idea of what factors they should consider when making this important decision.