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Blog / Blog / Cost of Ownership: Why Battery-Powered Equipment Can Be Far Less Painful to Your Pocketbook

Cost of Ownership: Why Battery-Powered Equipment Can Be Far Less Painful to Your Pocketbook

Oct
04
2017

Yes, even if you only remove the cost of gasoline or diesel from your operating expenses.

It’s a quiet revolution. You may not even notice that it has taken place around you—until you realize that you haven’t heard … or smelled the usual suspects. We’re talking about construction and landscaping equipment powered by traditional gasoline or diesel engines.

They’re disappearing, and the battery-powered replacements aren’t making a big noise—literally speaking—in the innovation they represent. However, they’re a full marching band in terms of the impact made on cost savings.

Everybody benefits

Battery-powered equipment produces absolutely no emissions. Removing the noise of the internal combustion engine means you likely won’t hear this equipment much, either. The drastic reduction of emission and noise pollution means this equipment can be used indoors without ventilation. It also allows for landscaping efforts using trimmers, blowers, and even mowers during times when they would otherwise bother or distract customers.

Let’s stick with the use of battery powered equipment in landscaping for a moment. The United States Environmental Protection Agency says that gas lawnmowers account for 5% of the nation’s air pollution. An ABC News article reports that an hour’s worth of mowing using a gas-powered machine generates the same amount of pollution as a 100-mile trip in your car.

The article estimates that Americans own about 38 million lawnmowers. Add other equipment like tillers, chain saws, leaf blowers, trimmers, and snow blowers. The number grows to nearly 100 million machines.

Spreading the Savings Across a Nation

Now, let’s do some math. A typical electric mower is capable of handling an average suburban lawn—about a third of an acre. It’ll require about 3.5 kilowatts to charge. The national average electricity rate is hovering around $0.11 per kilowatt hour. The cost to mow the lawn with an electric mower would be about $0.38.

The average cost of a gallon of gas is currently around $2.35. It’ll take about 2/3 of a gallon to mow a lawn using a traditional lawnmower. The cost to mow it this way would be $1.55.

Not every gasoline or diesel-powered piece of construction or landscaping equipment will offer the same savings, but there’s a $44 million savings alone just from switching to an electric lawnmower.

The Savings for a Business

If it’s your job to forecast expenses, you know that one of the biggest hits on your margins comes from an unexpected increase in fuel costs. Imagine calculating those margins if your fuel cost was…nothing. The cost-effectiveness doesn’t stop there. Consider the budget you have to allocate to maintain your fossil fuel-powered equipment.

Electric motors have a fraction of the moving parts compared to their traditional cousins. There’s less wear and tear, but not at the cost of power and efficiency. Construction equipment like the Sherpa Electric Mini Skid Steer is being used extensively for facilities management, concrete cutting, and remodeling or renovation.

You can compute the cost savings yourself if you know the price of gas or diesel in your area, as well as the cost of a kilowatt hour of electricity. But, what you also need to take into consideration is the cost savings for your labor needs. Use this calculator to see how fast a battery-powered skid steer would pay for itself and actually start to put profit in your pocket.

Is the growing choice of battery-powered equipment for construction and landscaping less expensive than the traditional equivalent? The answer is no. You may actually pay more for it up front. It’s a worthwhile investment, though.

You’ll immediately dispense with the considerable cost of gasoline or diesel—and remember, there are many factors that’ll push this price higher. Start with the removal of this operating expense. Add a generally lower maintenance cost, as well as the ability to use battery-powered equipment in more places. You’re starting to build a powerful case about the dramatic reduction in the cost of ownership. It’s time to join the revolution.

For more detail on our battery-powered mini skid steers and wheelbarrows, or the technology we use to make them run, explore our website. And please contact us at 954.978.3440 or through our online form with any questions.

October 4, 2017 By Alex Berg in Blog