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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My current service truck is getting beat. Nearly 300k miles, some of the box doors are rusty, none of them lock anymore, the cab is getting beat up....it's apparent that it's a work truck.

Frankly, it's getting embarrassing, and I also don't trust it nearly as much anymore even though I've always maintained it.

Time for another one. I lucked out big time with that one. Got it for a smoking deal in a no reserve auction, I won't stumble into a deal like that again.

So here's where I'm not sure what to do. New trucks are expensive, monthly payments are pretty high on them, and in the winter that might turn into an issue. The big plus is you get a truck that will last 10 years or more (maybe, they salt the roads here), a known history the whole time, and the factory warranty.

However, knock 10-15 grand off the price and you get still get a very clean truck with relatively low miles on it. Still get a decent service life out of it, and ultimately have a lower payment and lower total cost.

So what are the pros and cons of each that I might be missing? My big hang up with a brand new one is the salt on the roads here, it really reduces the life of the body and frame, plus the massive depreciation on it for resale.
 

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Residential Framing, Post Frame Buildings, Garages
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We've always bought clean low mileage vehicles out of the South, both personal and business.
I wouldn't buy a used vehicle from this area unless it's only seen a winter or two.

Pros - you can get a nice older vehicle with little to no rust for a decent price.

Cons - it can take a while to find one with decently low miles, and then you either have to have it shipped or go on a road trip.

My wife likes looking for vehicles and property though, she'll set up searches with the different sites and wait till something decent looking comes along.

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
If you are going to run them to 300k miles, I'd just get a new one.
Probably not the norm, I typically just run them until they become unreliable. Most of the time that's about 5 years.

Like the guy above, I usually go south to get one, and it doesn't take long for NY winters to really beat on them.
 

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My work trucks go between the job site and the farm. They get dinged up. Even if I'm super careful (which I'm not always), I've got others loading/unloading material and stuff happens. I would hate the inevitable paranoia around the first dings on a new truck. Also for my business, clients don't see or interact with my truck so it's not a part of my image, so I don't feel new provides any value.

Whether it's work, farm, or personal, the only new vehicle I've purchased is my skid steer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
You guys seem to be thinking the same way I always have.

I would love a new one, but the cost just seems too much for the depreciation.

Like you said, they get dinged and scratched and otherwise beat up from day to day work.

For me, having a clean looking truck I feel is important, and older rusted one to me sends a subliminal message that my work might match.
 

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A well-dressed contractor always having a brand new truck sends me a subliminal message that your money priorities are backwards and you care more about your image than your work. A well maintained older truck, with reliable but well used tools coming out of it, carried by a presentable but obviously worked in clothes, gives me subconscious confidence in your work.

But I'm a general wanting subs I can trust, not a typical client.... and I get that they have a much different vision they need to see to be comfortable.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I get that, and always feel a little weird when we roll new tools out in the spring. Last big job I did I treated myself to a new set of bags, first time in 10 years.

I showed the GC my old bags first and said "I'm not new, I swear, I just wanted a new set". He laughed about it.

A clean truck, regardless of age is important to me though. I would happily run an older one for a long time, but can't mess with fighting away the rust that long.

I priced new doors and a new box for mine, it's not worth it to add them with the overall value of that truck now, I'm better off starting fresh.

I do think it's obnoxious when guys buy a work vehicle, then slap a tuner in it, huge tires, and annoying vinyl all over it. I probably wouldn't hire those guys if they showed up to price a job for me, as their truck tends to reflect their personality a bit.
 

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I get that, and always feel a little weird when we roll new tools out in the spring. Last big job I did I treated myself to a new set of bags, first time in 10 years.

I showed the GC my old bags first and said "I'm not new, I swear, I just wanted a new set". He laughed about it.

A clean truck, regardless of age is important to me though. I would happily run an older one for a long time, but can't mess with fighting away the rust that long.

I priced new doors and a new box for mine, it's not worth it to add them with the overall value of that truck now, I'm better off starting fresh.

I do think it's obnoxious when guys buy a work vehicle, then slap a tuner in it, huge tires, and annoying vinyl all over it. I probably wouldn't hire those guys if they showed up to price a job for me, as their truck tends to reflect their personality a bit.
I couldn’t agree more.
 

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I agree on contractors with 'all new shiny stuff'- especially when it comes to lifted trucks with 20's, etc..... Had a friend that called me about a fence install on one of his sites- yep, guys had all brand new tools and a dumb truck. They were also using spray foam instead of concrete to set posts- LOL.

Really funny part about the new trucks that guys trick out is it's easy to void the warranty. They can tell if you take the DPF off then put it back, lifts will void warranty, upgraded intakes, etc.... Hard to find good used diesels that haven't been f#&ked with other than fleet vehicles in my last hunt a year ago.
 

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Nothing screams dooosh more than a 6+" lift kit on a "work" truck with a 10" drop hitch on it lol.

Got no problem seeing guys roll out new tools though, or new trucks, how do I know they didn't just retire an old set. Rather reserve my judgements for how the sub acts, talks and performs. My work truck was bought new in 2020, was left over 2019 stock though. In western Canada we have a company called Driving Force, they basically take fleet vehicles and resell them. I got my personal truck there, 2 years old, 40000km, less than half price.

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I have bought used every time, accept recently on a new business truck I paid cash for in 2019; 1st new truck.

I decided new because I wanted a particular truck for some branding purposes and function items were difficult to find used.

Used seams best buy IMO...especially if you don't need something odd.

I hate borrowing money, unless it "pays" somehow.

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Nothing screams dooosh more than a 6+" lift kit on a "work" truck with a 10" drop hitch on it lol.

Got no problem seeing guys roll out new tools though, or new trucks, how do I know they didn't just retire an old set. Rather reserve my judgements for how the sub acts, talks and performs. My work truck was bought new in 2020, was left over 2019 stock though. In western Canada we have a company called Driving Force, they basically take fleet vehicles and resell them. I got my personal truck there, 2 years old, 40000km, less than half price.

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Good point- no hate on new trucks or tools but if everything looks unused I'm wanting to know why that's the case.(basically just try to get the story from whoever) Seems like the 'fake it 'til you make it' crowd is a usual suspect for shiny stuff and excessive social media activity. I've even had these types take pictures of my **** to post and claim as their own.
 

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I usually buy a new truck every 5 years, 150k miles or so. Turn the old truck into a work truck and put another 5/150 on it, or however long I can make it last. Rinse and repeat

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Good looking company trucks with logos, etc. are rolling billboards, advertising for you 24/7.
We ran a fleet of pickups, each superintendent had one. Always bought new trucks, ran them to about 200-250,000 miles, which took about ten years. Had nice graphics on them, kept them washed, did not allow them to get beat up, etc.

It pays to keep your equipment in first class working shape. Clients see this, just like they pay attention to personal appearance.
Good impressions are important.
 

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Last July I got a 2018 GMC 2500 Van 8cyl 36k on it -- $19,500 --- in 20 months from new it depr from $33k. Basic proven technology -- no fancy turbo - echos, etc. My previous E250 I got with 122K on it --- held up better than average until rear ended at 225k.
 

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I've never owned a new vehicle, but I sold them for a while.
If you can pay cash used is 100% better. Two years old or so.
If you plan on doing payments then you might be better new. The interest rate savings can be huge.

I bought a truck last week. 04 Canyon. I'll have to do a little work to it, but it looks great and is good on fuel. If I needed to haul material or a ton of tools I would've bought a bigger truck, but this one will be perfect for what I'm doing now. Plus it'll be a good starter truck for my boys in a year or two when they start driving.

Also - if you're buying from a dealership don't buy before the end of the month. Dealerships and salesmen get a bonus for the number of vehicles sold in a month, and it can be pretty significant. Sometimes you can get a great deal on the last day of the month of the dealership hasn't hit their numbers.

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I bought one new truck.

Nice thing about it was that I knew who had driven it. I put 140k on it, and I did front brake pads and a new battery. That’s it.

Im a commercial driver, and I tend to drive very and slowly and smoothly, so I don’t tear up equipment.

Only down side to used is it might have been owned by a hot dogger.

That said, all my other rigs have been used. Saving 50% or more because it’s a few years old is a no brained for me.

If you want something very specific though, that can be difficult to find used.

Except, I kind of hit the jackpot.

Ive always wanted a service body in a 4x4, crew cab, and a manual transmission. And I really wanted a red one.

Needed a diesel for all the towing.

I could have ordered one from Ram, but I’d have been out 80k or more.

Last year I found a 2011 Ram 5500 CC service body, 4x4, manual, in red, with a ton of little stuff that would have ordered, if I was getting it new. Manual 4x4, integrated trailer brake, 6 passenger, on and on.

Long story longer, I got it for 28k and free shipping. 👍

Couldnt have afforded it if I’d gone new.
 
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