Things You Need to Know Before Owning a Dump Truck

Owning a Dump Truck

The dump trucks market will grow by $10 Billion between 2020 and 2025.

The demand for hauling material, debris, sand, rock, and waste isn’t going anywhere. But, if you’re reading this article you already know that owning a dump truck is a great investment.

It can get tricky when it comes to purchasing a truck, so check out our guide for help!

Owning a Dump Truck 101

Before you start the hunt for the perfect truck, ask yourself if you’re really ready. A dump truck is a lot different than even the biggest pick-up or four-by-four. In operation, maintenance, cost, and licensure. 

First, operating a dump truck requires a commercial driver’s license (CDL). every state has its own requirements. But, the process is similar to getting your regular license. 

Next, ensure you understand what type of dump truck insurance coverage you’ll need and what it will cost. Different makes and models of different ages can have different levels of coverage. Each state has unique requirements. 

Last, get a realistic idea of what fuel costs will be like to operate the truck. Dump trucks require diesel fuel. Since fuel prices fluctuate, check the U.S. Energy Information Administration for the most accurate pricing. 

The first thing you need to consider when purchasing a dump truck is the specifications of the truck’s body. Specifically, you will need to understand what carrying capacity your jobs require as well as what material the body should be made out of.


Once you’ve decided that a dump truck is the right investment. Have a clear idea of the type of loads you’ll be hauling. 

All dump trucks aren’t created equal. Different types are geared for lugging different things. 

You’ll need to consider how large of haul you’ll need. Taking multiple trips for a job with a smaller haul will be more costly than taking one massive haul. 

The engine capacity you need will also align with the capacity of the dump truck. How much power will you need to carry your loads? 


Type of dump trucks, specifically dump boxes come in two materials: aluminum and steel. Neither is necessarily better or worse. The “best” type of metal for you will be dependant on the hauls you’ll carry.

Steel is heavier than aluminum. But, steel is more durable. So, a steel truck might be better if you plan to carry a lot of hefty, rugged material. 

But, a lighter-weight dump box allows you to carry more material in one trip. A lighter vehicle also helps cut fuel costs. 

What to Look For

When it comes to how to buy a dump truck, always see a truck in-person before you buy it. Dump trucks are subjected to much more wear than a pedestrian-vehicle. They require a thoughtful look-over. 

The key things to look for are rust, signs of collisions, and age-related wear. Start with the dump box, inspect the lining and ensure that it will be functional. 

Next, examine the tires, axles, frames, and rails. Are there signs of corrosion? This can signal deeper problems with the truck and mean that expensive repairs are coming soon. 

Check the alignment of the truck. Specifically, look for any bending or bowing in the framing. Over time trucks used for heavy loads can bend over time. 

Buying a Dump Truck 

A small amount of planning and research can result in a high return of investment in the dump truck business. The process can of owning a dump truck can be tedious, but waiting until you find the right truck will pay off in the long run. 

Have more questions about what it takes to own and maintain a dump truck? Click over to our automotive resources!