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7 Common Pitfalls to Avoid when Buying Sack Trucks

If you’re looking to buy sack trucks you could easily be overwhelmed by the multitude of choices available. However, there are some common problems with sack trucks which you should be aware of. Understanding these will help you make a wise, well-informed decision about your investment.

A sack truck, also known as a hand truck, sack trolley or dolly, is a manual material handling device commonly used to move heavy and bulky loads. They are widely used in multiple industries, warehouses and distribution, delivery services, retail industries, construction sites, even offices – in fact any business or location where goods need to be transported is likely to have at least one sack truck available.

In this post we look at the 7 most common issues you will encounter or need to consider when buying a sack truck.

Problem 1 – Choosing a sack truck that is not suitable for your application

With so many different options available, buying an off the shelf sack truck can mean that you end up with something that is not fit for purpose. One size definitely does not fit all!

Using an unsuitable sack truck is inefficient and likely to be unsafe, lead to accidents and damage to the goods being moved or other objects in the path. Once it is clear the sack truck is not the right tool for task then it will need to be replaced or just not used. Either way, that is money and time wasted.

Avoid this mistake by thinking carefully about what you need your sack truck to do for you.

Consider these key things when buying your sack trolley.

Problem 2 – Durability

When you buy a sack truck, you expect the product to last – you certainly don’t want to be replacing it after just a short period of time.

It is important therefore to consider the quality of the build. In some cases, cheaper sack trucks have been made with lower quality materials used in order to cut costs.

With wear and tear, these cheap sack trucks are far more likely to break than those made with high-quality materials to high quality standards.

BIL AluTruks are durable and long lasting because we only use premium quality structural aluminium for extruded parts giving a really high strength-to-weight ratio. We choose the most effective alloy for tensile strength, density, ductility, formability, workability and corrosion resistance.

The common mistake here then, is thinking cheaper equals value for money. If you are tempted by cheap – factor in buying again in a few months’ time. Does that still look like good value now?

Problem 3 – Load limit

You must check the load rating for any sack truck that you are intending to buy.

This is important because it gives you the maximum weight that the sack truck can safely carry. If you exceed the load rating of a sack truck, it can become unstable, making it difficult to control inefficient and frustrating to use and potentially causing injury to the operator or damage to the items being moved. Exceeding the load rating can also cause damage to the sack truck.

We are aware that many off the shelf sack trucks use inferior quality wheel bearings (to save costs) or they allow too much tolerance between the bearings and the axle. This can significantly weaken the durability of the sack truck and consequently causes breakages after even only a short period of usage. Contrast this with the AluTruk range which holds 0.1mm tolerance between wheel and axle meaning very little play and excellent durability. You can learn more about the AluTruk range here.

If you want help or guidance on understanding safe load capacities and ratings for sack trucks, just call us on 01249 822222. We will be happy to advise you on selecting a sack truck with the load rating you need.

Problem 4 – Wheels

With an off the shelf sack truck, the wheels are already fitted so you get no choice!

But wheel choice is really important to consider when buying your truck. Do you want pneumatic (air filled) or puncture proof (solid) wheels? Which wheel is best suited to your application?

Puncture Proof wheel
Pneumatic (Air filled) wheel

We are here to help you if needed. Contact us on 01249 822222 for advice about which type of wheels you really need or see our guide to the pros and cons of pneumatic v puncture proof wheels.

Problem 5 – Welds

Lower cost sack trucks are cheaper for a reason. Often it is down to build quality. Inferior welds on a sack truck can compromise its safety, reliability and effectiveness. Weak welds will mean that a sack truck may not be able to support the weight it is designed to carry without causing damage. Poorly constructed joints can cause the sack truck to behave unpredictably, making it difficult to manoeuvre posing a safety risk.

You need to consider the likelihood of having to have your trucks repaired (or even replaced) if you opt for a lower quality build.

If you buy trucks with welds, it is important to ensure that your sack trucks are inspected regularly to detect any signs of wear or damage to avoid accidents happening when the truck is under load.

BILs lower cost sack truck range is called the BIL Truk range. Although they are a lower cost sack truck this doesn’t mean that we have compromised on build quality. These sack trucks will have welds, but our quality control focus means they are strong welds, done correctly so you can be sure your truck has been built to last. You also get choices on wheel types; choose from pneumatic or puncture proof tyres to suit the load and environment they will be used in.

BIL Truk range of low cost sack trucks

A regular complaint about sack trucks is that the handgrips slip off. Aside from being annoying, this can make operating the sack truck uncomfortable and increase the risk of accidents. With BIL’s sack trucks this is never a problem and once fitted correctly, our nylon grips are virtually impossible to remove without cutting tools!

Problem 6 – Limiting Your Choice

Buying an off the shelf sack truck will limit your choice.

With many off the shelf sack trucks you simply get a pre-built configuration There are no options to add extras to the sack truck or to modify the design in any way.

BIL’s AluTruk is the complete opposite of this situation!

AluTruk is a range of modular, aluminium sack trucks. Being modular, you can design your AluTruk to exactly suit your own requirements and because they are made from aluminium they are much less heavy but they are just as robust and strong as steel trucks, if not even more so.

As an example of the choices available to you when buying a Sack Truck did you know that there are multiple options just for handles. BIL offers a choice of eight different handle styles:

That’s just handles – there are options for other components too, like toeplates and wheels. So, buying a sack truck direct from the manufacturer allows you to specify exactly what features and capabilities you require to ensure that it exactly meets your specific requirements – which ultimately means it will do a much better job for you.

See how you can design your own AluTruk online and order it directly from BIL.

All this choice might seem a bit overwhelming if you are not sure of exactly what you need. But no worries – at BIL, our experienced and friendly specialists are on hand to help and advise you on selecting the best options for your sack truck. Simply call us on 01249 822222 or contact us at We will be delighted to assist you.

Buying a sack truck direct from the manufacturer allows you to specify exactly what features and capabilities you require in the truck, to ensure that it meets your specific needs. If it does that it will perform better for you.

Problem 7 – Lack of post-sales support

If you opt to buy an ‘off the shelf’ sack truck then often there is little or no warranty.

With BIL, all our standard modular trucks come with a 2-year warranty on parts.

Our specialist stair climber and water bottle trucks have a 12-month warranty.

In addition to a lack of warranty with off the shelf sack trolleys, it is often difficult to get spare parts if you need to repair your truck. This lack of spares for repairs means you end up having to buy a complete new sack truck instead of a much lower cost replacement part. This diminishes the ‘value for money’ argument with lower quality sack trucks.

However, this is certainly not the case if you buy AluTruks direct from the manufacturer. With AluTruk all parts are replaceable; handles, wheels, toeplates and even the frames.

You can find our AluTruk spare parts here. Having quick access to spares can save you hard cash – no expensive new sack truck purchase needed – and avoid lost productivity. (Of course you won’t even need to be concerned about spare parts after the warranty has expired.)

So these are our seven most common pitfalls to avoid when buying sack trucks. We think now would be a good time to remind you that BIL are the UK’s leading developer of modular aluminium sack trucks and hand trucks. We have 50 years of experience and expertise in this space.

Quality is everything to us. Delivering quality means we enhance the AluTruk® brand reputation while providing real value for money solutions to our customers.

Each AluTruk® is hand built to order by skilled operators who perform numerous quality checks prior, during and after manufacture. The AluTruk® brand stamp is a guarantee of this quality.

When you are looking to buy a sack truck you could easily be overwhelmed by the multitude of choices available. However, there are some common problems with sack trucks which you should be aware of, so that you make a wise, informed decision about your investment.