In our society, we often prioritise new equipment. Having something new makes us feel like we have got the very best product, which will do the very best job for us. However, this isn’t necessarily the case. You might find that you can get used equipment that is just as good – better, even, because it will do just as good a job for a fraction of the price. A used crane is no exception and the right piece of lifting equipment could make an enormous difference to your life and your work, without pushing up your budget to a level where you are uncomfortable with the buying process.

Is it safe to buy a used crane?

Safety is going to be the main concern on your mind, and that is completely understandable. Of course, safety is a big issue – you will need to be 100% sure the equipment you are using isn’t going to malfunction and cause unsafe situations. This is especially important if you have employees because you will have a duty of care towards them and any equipment they are using has to be right for the job.

The answer to this question is yes, it is perfectly safe to buy a used crane – as long as you do everything properly during the buying process. You must make sure your crane is fully certified and comes with all of the paperwork you need to prove this. You will also need to retain this paperwork for the future so that you can prove where and when you bought the crane, its specifications, its certifications for use and when it will next need to be serviced. You will need to produce this paperwork when you come to have your crane serviced in future.

How can you be sure that you are buying the right used crane for you?

Check everything out thoroughly and if you need to, visit a supplier in person to talk things through thoroughly. They can tell you the specifications of the crane you are thinking of buying, and talk you through everything in person to help you with the decision making process. It is really important to know the details of the loads you will be lifting, such as load capacity, whether or not they are irregular loads, and the environment in which the crane will be working. For example, if you are operating in an environment with low headroom where space might be a concern, a certain type of jib crane could be the answer for you. This information is all going to be essential to the supplier when they are recommending a crane to you and ensuring it is going to meet your needs fully.

It is also your own responsibility to make sure you are using the right equipment for the job. Under LOLER and PUWER, this is essential. You should make sure you have checked the equipment over fully before each and every job, as well as making sure it is fit for purpose and staff to have received adequate training.