Shipping Wheeled or Self-Propelled Freight
Summertime is fast approaching, and at this time of year we are often asked about shipping lawnmowers, vehicles, and other wheeled freight. Our knowledgeable sales and operations teams have assembled this guide for shippers who are moving this type of freight for the first time.
LTL freight is the primary way for small businesses and individuals to move large items over long distances. LTL stands for “less-than-truckload.” In essence, your freight is sharing truck space with other folks’ shipments in order to save money.
If you’re shipping wheeled machinery, you will need to crate the item or, at minimum, put it on a pallet. Wheeled furniture must always ship in a wood crate or box. This is partly because ramps and straps to load and tie freight are not standard for all LTL trucks. Additionally, carriers usually won’t accept wheeled freight because it poses a danger to other freight if it’s heavy and mobile. To ensure a smooth pick-up and a safe journey, crate your item. You’ll be glad you did!
Go-carts and ATVs (“All-Terrain Vehicles”) can easily ship as LTL. Go-carts must be crated. ATVs can ship on a pallet if they are over 1600 pounds, but as always, a crate is a safer choice for your shipment.
If you’re shipping lawn mowers, tractors, or roto-tillers, you’ll also need to crate the freight, although some tractors are too large for LTL and must ship on a flatbed truck instead. As a general rule of thumb, if a tractor or mower is over twelve feet in length, it will most likely need a flatbed.
If you’re moving cross-country this summer, you are probably planning to move your car. Unfortunately, automobiles cannot ship as LTL freight. Automobiles and trucks typically ship with specialized vehicle carriers. (You have probably seen the large, stacking vehicle carriers on the highway.) However, LTL freight is still a great option for transporting your other items, whether it’s furniture (again, crated!) or boxed personal items like clothes and books.