Wednesday, 11 December 2013

A tale of two axle weighbridges.....

Well six really. And spread across three different customers in different parts of the country.

In quick succession recently we were contacted by some existing customers enquiring about upgrades for their axle weighbridges. Different customers scattered all over the UK in different industries but basically with the same need - to ensure their vehicles remained legal.

In order to provide an accurate price for upgrades we visited the customers to discuss their current needs. Over the years, the requirement had changed a little but in one respect all these systems had one thing in common - they were installed 25 years ago!

That's a whole quarter of a century.

But the state of the machines couldn't be more different.  All of these customers are major fleet operators and household names not back street cowboy outfits.

One customer, who installed four of them had not done any maintenance at all over the years but the other two had placed their systems under maintenance contracts.

One customer based in York had a need to move some components as his operation had changed over the years. Other than that the though machine was in good order and once the modifications have been completed there's no reason why it won't last another 25 years. Or more even.

The second customer, based in east London wanted to know if there were any new developments he could incorporate to improve the operation. Having discussed his need in detail, weighed a few vehicles, which proved the accuracy we concluded that his current set up was best for his needs and, as the saying goes, if it isn't broke, don't fix it. Happy that he's got the installation for his needs, again the machine should be good for another 25 years.

Unfortunately, the final customer based in East Anglia had not done any maintenance on the systems over the years, largely due to a difference of opinion as to which part of the business owned them. With no one willing to take on the responsibility for them there is really no option but to replace them.
A static axle weighbridge that has been abandoned
An axle weighbridge after 25 years of no servicing

Regular maintenance always pays but how often it should be done varies. We try to be objective and give the best advice we can.

There are some customers who have very dirty or heavily trafficked axle weighbridges and we recommend that they have regular servicing and preferably a maintenance contract. Others, such as a stage lighting company in Kingston have a nice clean yard, only five vehicles and weigh them each once a week so our advice to them was just to call us out every couple of years to give it a once over.

Getting the right level of service for your axle weighbridge would easily see it lasting a quarter of a century and who knows - even half a century or more?