Owners of heavy mechanical equipment have the option of buying lube skids or dedicated lube trucks. Both serve the same purpose that is servicing mechanical equipment at the site where it is being used. This is equipment that cannot be moved to an offsite servicing station. Lube skids and trucks are mobile and they can therefore service equipment wherever it is stationed. A lube skid is however different from an oiltruck in that it is smaller and can be mounted on a pickup truck and dismounted as necessary. A truck is much larger and has lubrication equipment permanently mounted on it.
One has to think about several things when deciding whether to buy a skid or an oil truck. The scope of the project at hand is one of these important considerations. When considering the scope of the project one should think of the number of machines to be serviced, their sizes, how frequently they need to be serviced, how far they are from the source of the lube and other materials, as well as the distance between different sites if a project is being carried out on separate sites. The scope of the project will inform the final choice. It makes more economic and practical sense to buy a fully-fledged truck if the scope warrants it. Skids may not deliver to the owner's expectation if he/she has a lot of equipment that needs regular servicing.
The second factor to consider is the cost. A lube skid is definitely cheaper than an oil truck but that is not to say that it is always cost-effective. The cost-effectiveness of a lube truck or a skid depends on the scope of the work being done. If one has a few machines that don't require frequent servicing then buying a lube truck is a waste of money because it will sit idle for long periods in addition to having cost a lot of money. In such cases, skids would be more economical.
Mobility is another important factor to consider before buying a lube truck or skid. It is easier to ferry skids to far-flung locations because they are smaller and can be carried on pickup trucks or off-road vehicles. Oil trucks can face a mobility challenge if the road to a work site is in bad state. If a truck breaks down along the way the machinery waiting for service will almost certainly not be used until the truck is fixed but if a vehicle carrying a skid breaks down then the skid can simply be transferred to another carrier and delivered with minimal delay. The mobility of skids is an added advantage when there is need to service machines in several sites a short drive from each other. Skids can be shuttled from place to place faster than lube trucks.
One drawback of lube skids is that they need frequent replenishing because of their small capacity. This should however not be a problem if the lubricants are available on site or are transported along with the skids from site to site. Ultimately, one should speak with lube experts to customize their lube trucks or skids to their specific needs because even if one chooses the right equipment it may not serve him/her very well unless it is properly customized.
Should you buy a lube skid or a lube truck?