Purchasing Used Reefer Trailers

Purchasing Used Reefer Trailers

It is true that the United States is home to a vast manufacturing sector, but it is the transportation industry that delivers finished goods to their final destination. The United States has many roads and highways that semi trucks drive on every day, and larger carrier companies offer ships that can deliver many tons of cargo to ports around the world. Jets, meanwhile, can deliver items at high speed and can fly right over any terrain without trouble. Still, most carrier companies tend to be on the smaller side, and they tend to have fleets of semi trucks for the job. Many shipper clients area happy to hire these carrier companies for a delivery, and a truck can pull a variety of trailers behind it. Many trailers are generic, but some are designed for specialized cargo, such as reefer units.

Just what is a reefer trailer, anyway, and how can a carrier company owner properly buy a reefer trailer?Refrigeration units such as used Thermo King trailers and others may be in high demand, and finding and financing used reefer trailers will take some work. But these used reefer trailers can be bought at a serious discount in some cases, and specialized lenders are ready to help buyers finance those used reefer trailers when purchased.

About Reefers

Put simply, a reefer trailer is a truck trailer with air conditioner units built into it that can chill the interior, and these trailers may range from 70 to -20 degrees Fahrenheit on the inside (depending on the cargo’s needs). Such trailers may also have insulated walls to help keep the contents insulated, especially during warmer weather. These trailers may range from 28 to an impressive 53 feet long, and some of the largest reefer trailers may be up to 13.5 feet tall and weigh as much as 44,000 pounds or so.

Most often, reefer trailers are used to deliver cold-sensitive food items, such as for grocery stores. Meat, dairy, frozen processed food, and the like can be placed in these trucks. Such cargo may be unloaded from freezers in a warehouse and transferred to a reefer truck, and then unloaded at the grocery store’s dock and placed into freezers and coolers on site. Other foods, such as dry goods and canned food, will probably arrive in regular trucks instead. Not surprisingly, the market for fridge trailers, even used reefer trailers, is huge and still growing. Around 500,000 of these trailers are in operation across the United States today, and around the world, the refrigerated trailer market is expected to hit a value of $7 by the year 2022. It is clear, then, that any carrier company owner who’s looking for used reefer trailers is making a fine investment. But that will also require some smart financial decisions.

Making the Purchase

When a carrier company owner decided to look for new or used reefer trailers to add to their truck fleet, they will probably need to take out some loans to finance that decision. And in the case of used reefer trailers, the buyer is urged to look over the trailer in person and check for any defects or damage on the unit. The buyer might even test-run the fridge unit to make sure it can generate (and maintain) the necessary level of cold air inside.

It is rare for truck companies to turn to big banks for loans like this, so a carrier company owner may work with specialized truck lenders instead. Such a company will have more agreeable requirements for a loan, and they may even work with borrowers who have moderate to poor credit. Still, it is best for a borrower to have a high personal and business credit score alike, and if they do, they might get as much as 100% of the reefer unit’s value in the loan (and at a low interest rate). A borrower with poor credit might still get approved for a truck loan, but at a high interest rate. Either way, the truck and trailer act as collateral, making this a secured loan and therefore more attractive to the lender. In other cases, the borrower may even take out a loan based on the value of a trailer they already own.

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