How To Choose the Best Truck Scale

February 25, 2019

Organizations throughout southern Texas need the ability to accurately weigh truckloads to ensure safety, optimum loading, and to avoid tickets and potential damage to trucks and trailers. The key to achieving those goals is the right truck scale. Of course, truck weight scales vary greatly – how do you ensure that you’re making a smart decision? How do you tell if you are investing in the right type of truck scale system in the first place? It really comes down to understanding the differences between single and multiple platform vehicle scales and how they apply to what you’re weighing.

There’s a wide range of reasons why a business must weigh their trucks, but most often it comes down to determining the amount of product loaded based on what’s called a gross tare net. Often, you will want to maximally load the truck – this ensures that you’re not wasting space, while simultaneously providing customers with the delivery time they expect. It also helps your company reduce the number of trips needed to deliver those goods. However, there are challenges. Here are 3 key factors to consider:

1. Single Truck Scale or Multiplatform?

One of those is that a maximum load might overload the axles. If you’re using a cat scale because you don’t own your own truck scale, you have to pay the fee to weigh, learn that you’re
overloaded, drive back to the shipping center to re-load, then drive back to the cat scale again. That’s a lot of wasted time, effort, and money.

If you’re not doing a lot of shipping, then owning a single truck scale could be fine. You simply load the truck, weigh it, then make any necessary adjustments, weight it again, and get on the road. However, a single platform truck scale can only provide a single weighment. Using one and splitting axles to find your axle weight can lead to inaccurate weighments and lost revenue from the excessive amount of time it takes to split axle a truck out. A multiplatform is a better option for southern Texas organizations doing a lot of shipping, and those who need multiple axles weighments to ensure the trucks leaving the facility are road legal. A multiplatform truck scale is really just a series of three or more scales linked together that provides an accurate weight reading for each axle and then a total.

2. Concrete or Steel?

Your organization will also need to choose the deck material for your truck scale. Both concrete and steel are available, but they are not the same, and concrete generally wins out over steel. In terms of cost alone, you could see a variance between 2% and 20% depending on the cost of concrete.

Concrete delivers additional benefits, as well. For instance, steel must be coated regularly to prevent rust. Concrete does not. Additionally, high-quality concrete will outlast steel by up to 10 years. Even then, the most common replacement will be the equipment.

With that being said, steel is faster to get up and running, usually requiring only a single day. Concrete usually requires 28 days to cure, unless you pay extra for a fast-curing formulation, which will be ready within three days.

3. Is a Portable Scale Right for You?

Many southern Texas organizations value the savings associated with a portable scale, but these are often the wrong choice. Numerous regulations restrict the use of portable truck scales, including being moved every six months, and the need for a hard, level base foundation for use.

Choosing the right truck scale can be difficult, but the right partner can help simplify things and ensure that you get the best one for your needs. If you have questions, or need more information about truck scales, fill out the contact form

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Texas Measurement & Calibration Solutions, LLC