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Telehandler for sale: new vs. used

While there are plenty of benefits for hiring a forklift, telehandler or any other piece of equipment for your worksite, there are significant upshots to putting in the initial investment to buy one, so as to save money in the long run. With that, you are then faced with another decision: do you buy a new telehandler, or do you nab a used telehandler for sale? Like most decisions, the answer comes down to your specific needs, budgets and the longer term goal you have with the machine.

Why would I buy over hire?

Hiring a forklift or telehandler is an excellent option if you have a tighter budget or needing one for a singular project. It gives you a bit more freedom in the ‘purchase’ and the maintenance work is left to the hirer. You are just paying for the time you’re using it, it can typically be picked up and delivered, and you can even hire an operator if you have no one on site licensed to do so. Typically, from a good quality hire company, you can get a decent read on its condition with a use and maintenance history report, personal inspection and giving it a bit of a trial run if you hold a licence. You can hire for as little as a day and for as long as a few years. It just needs to be returned in the condition you received it, with a full tank of petrol, diesel or a fully charged battery. 

However, hiring isn’t ideal if you have ongoing machine requirements that would have you cumulatively spending more on a hire machine than forking out for a telehandler with an initial upfront cost. It also means that you have greater autonomy and insight into maintenance of the telehandler, rather than trusting your supplier’s choices in that regard. At All Lift, we have an exceptional maintenance process, but we know that isn’t always the case for the industry. People can be really stung if information hasn’t been transparent, including increasing the danger to their worksite. 

The biggest ‘pro’ to buying over hiring is that you have a telehandler on hand, immediately, when you need it. This is incredibly invaluable to some worksites and can make significant positive differences to productivity (nothing worse than waiting times on hire, even for just a day, when you’re on a strict and costly schedule for a project).

Why opt for a new telehandler for sale, over a used one?

So, if buying a telehandler is the best option for you: do you go new or used? Let’s break it down into pros and cons…


Pros of buying a new telehandler

● It is brand new! You have very little, if any, concerns about its history because you’re the first to use it

● You can get top of the range telehandlers, with the most up-to-date technology and functionality innovations

● You get the ‘new car’ feeling; you know it, the smell, the novelty of a brand new seat, breaking it in… it’s a pretty great feeling

● In-date warranty

Cons of buying a new telehandler

● Potential not-yet-discovered issues or niggles with the machine. If it’s new, it means there are no years of history and the pick ups of other operators to highlight problems. Although new telehandlers go through rigorous quality control, the true test is always the response once it’s out in the market.

● You have to break it in. While it’s also listed as a ‘pro’, this can also offer a few growing pains and can take a while to have it feeling comfortable and offering seamless movement.

● It is a substantial upfront investment to buy a new telehandler, even if you get one on sale.

● You’ll have less of a pool of reviews and word of mouth experiences about the machine to help with your decision making.

Pros of buying a used telehandler

● If it has been well looked after, you could be getting a telehandler that’s of equal quality as a new one for significantly less upfront costs

● You will typically be supplied with the maintenance and usage history of the machine, and a greater understanding of its specific function to help you with troubleshooting issues and making an informed decision on the purchase.

● It has been broken in

● You will have a range of opinions and reviews on the telehandler to help you in the buying and decision-making process

Cons of buying a used telehandler

● You need to put a lot more trust into your supplier than with a new one; may have no warranty, and are taking their word on a lot of maintenance and usage information. (So always make sure you trust the seller!)

● There are some risks to the longevity of the telehandler and you may have to replace some big ticket parts if they’re not up to scratch

● They have been broken in. You may need to make adjustments to have it suit you and/or your operator.

● There may be issues you don’t identify upon purchase that have been masked. Again, this comes down to finding a quality seller that you trust… but things like rust can be easily removed temporarily, while still having caused actual damage.


Are you looking for a new or used telehandler for sale? Talk to our friendly team today!

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