Truck cranes as the term suggests are cranes mounted on trucks. These machines are popular due to several reasons such as availability, ability to lift extremely heavy loads, easy transportation, etc. Considering the options out there, picking the right crane truck can be tricky when going to a boom truck rental. Let’s go into details and share everything you need to know about crane trucks.

What Are The Different Types Of Crane Trucks?

Crane trucks are categorized based on features, size, and specifications. While looking for the best crane truck out there, you will come across three major types – small, medium, and large crane trucks. Small crane trucks are the smallest type and are capable of lifting up to 20 tons.

Plus, these cranes are mounted on light or medium-duty truck chassis. The purpose of these crane trucks is not to lift and shift extremely heavy loads but to carry out maintenance or small residential tasks such as replacing electric poles, transformers, etc.

On the other hand, medium crane trucks are slightly bigger than small crane trucks and are able to lift relatively heavier loads. The lifting capacity of these cranes is between 20 to 50 tons. They are able to lift and handle larger loads and are usually mounted on heavy-duty truck chassis.

As a result, these types are used for infrastructure, commercial construction, and other similar tasks. And finally, large crane trucks are heavy-duty machines that are not only the biggest but can carry the heaviest loads.

These crane trucks can lift loads of more than 50 tons and are mounted on trucks that are specifically made to handle the sheer size of the crane. Additionally, these cranes come with features such as outriggers and additional support to help keep the crane stable while dealing with heavy loads on tough terrains.

Other Crane Truck Types

In addition to small, medium, and large crane trucks, there are other types as well such as telescopic, knuckle boom, and lattice boom crane trucks. Each type carries a different set of specifications, features, and purposes. For instance, telescopic cranes feature a boom with several tubes fitted inside, which extend using a hydraulic mechanism to help with the crane’s reach.

Meanwhile, a two-part boom that appears like a knuckle identifies the knuckle boom crane trucks. These cranes are usually used in locations where space is limited as they can fold into a compact size.

Finally, lattice boom cranes come with a lightweight boom made using a steel lattice. This offers the crane more strength and additional reach when compared to the other types.

Should I Buy/Rent A Used Or A New Crane Truck?

Now that we have discussed different types of crane trucks in detail, the question now stands is whether you should buy/rent a used or new crane truck. The first thing you need to keep in mind when it comes to considering crane trucks for rent is the maintenance history.

As mentioned in the beginning, crane trucks are the most popular type due to several reasons. The most important factor is that they can be easily driven to job sites. However, any machine that lifts heavy loads is supposed to wear with time. The only way to keep it running smoothly is to schedule expert maintenance.

So, if you are looking for a used crane truck, it is normal for the crane to have minor dents, cracks, etc. However, the major components should not have any visual signs of wear and tear. If there are any leaks or cracks, you will need to look at other options.

But in most cases, crane trucks are properly maintained due to stringent rules & regulations of the state. To be on the safe side, you should also ask the seller or renter to provide you with the maintenance history.

On the other hand, buying a new crane truck is the best option. However, these things are not cheap. The cost can vary based on the type, size, and manufacturer. Plus, you won’t have to worry about any flaws since the crane will be covered with a warranty.

To make your money worth it, it would be best to consult an expert and define your needs and preferences. If the task will take a few weeks to months at most, renting a crane is going to be the better option.

What To Consider When Looking For a Used Crane Truck?

When renting crane truck from crane services DC, going through the maintenance schedule is one thing but inspecting the engine, boom and other important components is equally necessary since they are directly related to the safety and security of the people and surroundings.

If possible, ask a colleague or an expert to give you company while thoroughly inspecting the machine. You should check the truck chassis, engine, cab, additional support, outriggers, and hydraulics. It is often the case that cranes have serious issues with the major components and the supplier tends to hide them via temporary fixes.

As a result, while inspecting the crane, you won’t feel or hear anything until something serious happens at the job site. Therefore, you need to give the inspection all your time and effort just to ensure safety and security later on.

Check to see if all the buttons, functions, and features are working. At the same time, ask your helping hand to be on the lookout for any unusual sounds or activity. Moreover, consider the job site and the transportation route as well.

Even though crane trucks are able to handle difficult terrains, you need to make sure the one you hired does not have difficult maneuvering. Plus, it will need to stand on a level surface to deal with heavy loads. If that is not the case and there are obstructions in the way, you will need to prepare the job site first before the crane can arrive.

How To Maintain A Truck Crane?

Maintaining a truck crane might seem a daunting task but is fairly easy as long as you are following the maintenance schedule and performing regular inspections. All you need to do is follow the manufacturer’s recommendations and you should be fine.

Furthermore, depending on the state, you will be required to follow the industry standards related to the maintenance of the cranes as well. For instance, crane operators are required to perform an inspection every time before operating the crane.

If there are any visual signs of wear and tear, they need to be fixed and recorded in the maintenance log. This maintenance log is shared with an individual hired by the state to visit and inspect different job sites to ensure rule implementation.

If found ignoring the law, you could end up in serious legal trouble and maybe even fined a heavy amount.


There is a huge variety of crane trucks out there. Buying or renting demands that you define your needs, perform a thorough inspection, and consult the experts. On top of that, choose a crane truck rental VA that offers both satisfaction and guarantee. This will not only help you protect your money but also look out for those working for you on the ground.