Are you tired of fixing the engine on that old loader? Not to mention it has failed three times on the jobsite. What about the double trowel that was state of the art during the Clinton Administration? Same story, mechanical failure again. Renting is an option, but you prefer to own your equipment. Instead of digging a hole on the jobsite that old equipment is digging a hole into your bottom line.

This is a common scenario among contractors these days as many of you opt to hang onto the equipment you already own, instead of purchasing or renting. Repair bills are adding up concurrent with the age of your equipment, but something has to give, and invariably it will— sooner than you think.

Do you take the plunge and buy new equipment now, or make due with your current fleet? Will the equipment even make it through the summer construction season? What about the impending upswing on construction that will happen? Do you really want to show up to a jobsite with unreliable equipment?

Fortunately, equipment manufacturers are a step ahead of you launching the next generation of equipment and tools to make your jobsite more efficient, reduce labor costs, and increase production.

In recent months, manufacturers have invited the editors of CMCP, and its sister publications Concrete Construction and Masonry Construction, to media events launching next-generation products to the concrete industry. DeWALT, Bosch, Bobcat/Doosan, BASF, and Knaack have all hosted media events, and continue to push the envelope of product development.

During a Bobcat/Doosan event in Atlanta this past June, product managers reviewed new equipment options, including telematics and laser-leveling systems for loaders, and zeroswing tails for compact excavators.

Last summer, Bobcat held a similar media event where the premise was the same—new compact equipment and innovative features. Had that much changed in the company’s loader and excavator offerings in a year? Indeed, it has, said multiple Bobcat product managers, as research and development into new equipment never stops.

The R&D aspect is a side of construction equipment rarely seen by contractors. Hours go into new equipment, same for upgrades to a specific series of machines. Next comes rigorous testing in simulated job conditions; performance assessments; deconstruction and alterations; and even further testing. Equipment manufacturers provide contractors the highest quality equipment available. The choice is yours: Continue investing in your old equipment or invest in new equipment that ultimately provides you a competitive advantage on the jobsite.