Purchasing a Reefer Trailer For a Semi Truck

Purchasing a Reefer Trailer For a Semi Truck


The United States is home to a massive manufacturing sector, as well as a lot of farms, meaning a lot of materials have to be transported across the nation. Larger carrier companies offer freight trains and ships for large hauls, and jets can carry goods quickly over any sort of terrain. Meanwhile, smaller vehicles such as semi trucks are vital for making smaller, more affordable deliveries, and many shipper clients only need trucks, not a jet or a train. Most carrier companies are small and can only afford trucks, but those trucks are quite important. Better yet, the trucks’ trailers can vary based on their cargo, from generic trailers to liquid nitrogen tanks and livestock trailers to reefer trailers. But what is a reefer trailer, and how can a truck company owner choose a reefer trailer for sale? To buy a reefer trailer for a good price, some research must be done, and the buyer should choose between new and used to make this a good investment.

The Business of Carrier Reefers

Reefer truck trailers are refrigeration units that carefully maintain their internal temperatures, so they can deliver cold-sensitive items such as dairy, meats, frozen processed food, and other perishables. These reefer units tend to have one or more air conditioners in them that can generate the necessary air temperature inside, and these carriers also feature insulated walls to keep the contents from warming up. A typical reefer trailer can generate an internal temperature ranging from -20 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit, depending on the cargo, and these trailers can also vary greatly in their size. They range from 28 to 53 feet in length, and the largest of them may be up to 13.5 feet in height and carry some 44,000 pounds of cargo. Often, these trailers are used to make deliveries to grocery stores and similar clients, while dry goods like canned food and pasta are delivered in regular truck trailers.

This is a big business, and it is still growing. Right now, some 500,000 reefer trailers are in use across the United States today, and more and more of them are ordered every year. The number of reefer trailer orders increased 250% from January 2017 to January 2018, for example. The global refrigeration market, meanwhile, was worth $5 billion or so in 2015, and it’s expected to grow to a value of $7.65 billion by the year 2022. That’s a CAGR of 4.8% or so. Clearly, such reefer trailers are lucrative for truck carrier companies, so how can a company owner find a suitable reefer trailer for sale on the wholesale market? Such an investment must be made carefully.

Finding Wholesale Reefer Units

The owner of a carrier company can look online to find a new and/or used reefer trailer for sale in their area, or find several at once. Buying such trailers allows the company to expand its list of clients to include grocery stores and related enterprises, which can prove lucrative if the numbers add up. Of course, before finding a reefer trailer for sale at a good price, the buyer is urged to review his/her business and personal credit scores alike, since a higher score means better loan terms. Some business owners are not even aware of business credit scores at all, and are encouraged to learn more about them.

A new reefer trailer for sale won’t have any wear and tear, and will come with factory warranties, though it may be too expensive for some buyers. If that is the case, the buyer can look for a gently used reefer trailer for sale instead, and examine it in person before buying. The buyer should look for issues with that reefer’s brakes, axles, wheels, brake lights, and the air conditioning units.

Big banks are reluctant to make loans for this sort of purchase, so the buyer can turn to specialized truck lending firms for help, and that lender will assess the borrower’s credit scores and financial history (their terms are more generous than those of big banks). A borrower with good credit might get as much as 100% of the reefer trailer’s value in a loan, and at a low interest rate. Also, the trailer itself will act as collateral, making it a secured loan.

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