Sometimes, slide ladders will do just fine. At other times, where you need to climb to a particular height to do a specialized job, you will need more than a ladder.
A bucket van will be perfect, especially if you need to be comfortable enough to work, balanced enough to have both your hands free for work, and consider your safety.
They can comfortably take you to a height of more than 125 feet. To put it simply, a bucket truck is a utility equipment with an extendable pole and a bucket large enough to hold 1 or 2 people attached at the end.
What is a bucket van?
It’s a utility service smaller vehicle that features a hydraulic pole that has a personnel-carrying bucket at its end. The contraption is mounted at the back. If it’s a cargo van, it’s called a bucket van (also known as a boom van).
The bucket is also known as the aerial work platform and it helps to keep the operator safe as the hydraulic pole, which is also known as the boom, gives an aerial lift up to where they can comfortably and safely work. The boom can also use an electric lift system.
With a weight limit of less than 1-ton, boom trucks are designed to hold 1 – 2 people. They are mobile and employed for temporary access.
Note: The aerial work platform is usually controlled from the cab of the vehicle. This will require at least two operators to pull off.
How much is a bucket van?
There’s no fixed price as there are different make and model offered by any company. Sophistication, manufacturer, availability, and other factors determine the price.
A standard light-duty boom truck can go for anything between $37,000 and $140,000. For instance, a 2009 Latec AA55 International 4300 can go on sale for about $100K. A lower-end model may be gotten for as low as $60 or less.
As for the high-end trucks, a brand new Terex Hi-Ranger TM105-2015 Freightliner M2 goes for about $480K.
Renting will save you the trouble of buying.
What are the average costs of bucket vans for rent?
Generally, the costs of renting bucket from rentals will depend on a number of things. They include the truck model, the rental company, the working height, the number of operators needed, the site location, and the duration for which you need it.
Typically, the largest pricing factor is the height limit of the truck. The rule of thumb is the higher the height limit, the higher the price will probably be. The aerial lift of a boom van will range from 34 to more than 100 feet.
The average cost of renting them will cost you anything from as low as $100 per hour to as much as $5,000 per month. Any available model can be rented for hours (usually at least 4), days, weeks, or months.
The most expensive way of using a boom truck is to buy a brand new one. The most economical is purchasing a used model. Renting is somewhere in between. In the events where you’d want to rent, contact the nearest rental store.
Related: View another utility guide here about lift gate trailers, costs and pros / cons!
Types of bucket vans
The type of boom van you settle for depends on the type of work you need to do, the height you have to reach to do it, and the type of boom to give you the aerial lift to reach there.
Currently, there are mainly four different types of boom trucks available that you can choose from.
- Cherry Picker
- Boom Trucks
- Digger Derrick
Features of bucket vans
A standard boom van should have the following specifications:
- Have 45 feet of side reach
- Get up to 100 feet of working height
- Full pressure proportional controls
- Capacity to lower controls via override
- Start and stop the engine from the basket
- Capacity for the aerial work platform to slide and rotates 180°
- Extension boom made of fiberglass
- The lift system is typically controlled from the cab
How a bucket van work
First things first, note that only trained personnel is allowed to either drive or operate these bucket trucks. This is why drivers come with them when you rent them, you won’t need to request one.
The part of the bucket equipment functions exactly as any other regular truck. Any licensed driver can drive it to different locations. However, a boom is not a regular truck, it has a hydraulic lift system mounted on its back.
Along with the truck, the driver will need to operate the equipment. Only a trained driver would know what to do. It would be wrong and dangerous without the know-how.
Often, the bucket will have its own controls as well. So, when you’re renting it, comply with all the safety and inspection regulations.
Note: For safety purposes, ensure equipment is in good condition before you use it every time.
Uses of a bucket truck
You will be forgiven for thinking that boom trucks as utility vehicles are only used to lift workers and/or equipment to work on electrical poles.
The reality is that they can be used for various other tasks, from the mundane (harvesting fruit trees) to the technical (maintenance and repairs).
Below are just some uses:
- Electrical and telecommunications maintenance
- Harvesting fruits
- Washing windows of tall buildings
- Aid animal rescue
- Fire rescue
- Tree trimming
- Stage tools and management
- Aerial photography and filming
- Hanging holiday lights
Bucket truck manufacturers
The main manufacturers in the country are Aero-Lift, Altec, Arm Lift, Dur-a-Lift, Elliot, ETI, Manitex, Pitman, Stamp, Terex, Utem, and Versalift.
Unfortunately, because there are very few manufacturing companies that sell them, this leaves a very narrow dealer market for it.
As a consequence, they tend to be very expensive to purchase. On the bright side for prospective buyers, they are much more affordable at rentals. Contact the one nearest to you or search their website.
What is a bucket van auction?
This is a public sale in which bucket vans are sold to the highest bidder.
How to get an affordable Sprinter bucket van for sale?
By buying a used one from any number of vendors such as Commercial Truck Traders.
It comes in both gas and diesel engines.
What is the best Ford Transit bucket van?
Ford Transit 350 cargo van is the best.
With a standard cab, its transmission type is automatic. It runs on gas, is equipped with an air conditioning unit, and has a GVWR of 9,500 lbs. It comes with steel wheels, hydraulic brakes, and spring suspension.
It’s manufactured by Versalift and has a hauling capacity of 320 lbs. The single rear wheel model arrives with standard 235/65 R16C 121/119 Euro-metric, commercial-rated tires. The rear door is easy to open.
Ford E350 bucket van vs splice van with a bucket?
There hardly is a significant difference between them.
As for similarities, they are both heavy-duty vehicles fitted with automatic transmission and provide aerial lift. They also have a lift height of 34 feet and 350 pounds lift capacity.
What is a cable placer truck?
They are vehicles designed for the sole purpose of placing fiber optic cables.