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MINI EXCAVATOR IDLE TIME COSTS MORE THAN YOU MIGHT THINK

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With today’s fuel prices, fuel economy is a concern for operators when pricing out jobs when using a compact excavator. With fuel consistently at or near the top of your annual operating expenses, and with the recent red diesel changes any savings you make in the area of fuel consumption go straight to your bottom line. Even small changes can make a big difference to profitability, and the improvements you make now will pay off down the road when the cost of fuel inevitably rises.

Idle time, of course, is the time your equipment is running while not doing productive work and according to some industry experts, idle time can easily represent as much as 40-50% of the total machine running time. Fuel burn is at the top of the idle time cost list. Every non-productive hour for every machine translates into wasted fuel therefore the trick, then, is to eliminate unnecessary idle time.

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We understand that fuel is one of the top equipment operating expenses for excavator owners. But did you know that by choosing the right coupler you can improve the efficiency of your machine, saving fuel, time and money.

Historically the compact coupler market has been dominated by manual couplers due to their lower initial investment costs, fewer internal components and generally lighter overall weight. While investment in fully hydraulic quick coupler technology is sometimes seen as a cost burden in reality more and more owners are seeing it as having significant cost and productivity advantages over a manual coupler.

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For example when operating with a Manual coupler you either need an additional groundworker to carry out the physical attachment changeover or if in some cases you are working alone the excavator operator is required to physically leave the cab of the machine and use manual force to position the pin into place, causing the change-out process to take longer. However, simply switching from a manual coupler to a hydraulic coupler can be transformational for decreasing the time it takes to change attachments significantly reducing the overall daily idle time and consequently reducing fuel consumption.

While investment in fully hydraulic quick coupler technology is sometimes seen as a cost burden compared with manual couplers, in reality, it is a cost advantage. Ten changes in a day equates to an hour saved on a job with a Miller GTS. The amount of fuel you could save monthly means that you could pay off the cost of your coupler in less than 6 months.

Imagine two of the same machines doing the same amount of work on the same job site — but Machine A fitted with a manual coupler runs with 50 percent idle time and Machine B fitted with a hydraulic coupler is idling at 33 percent. Machine A runs about 2,000 hours each year, whereas Machine B runs about 1,500. While it may seem small at first, the difference quickly adds up.

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Machine A Machine B
Coupler Manual Hydraulic
Annual machine hours 2000 hours 1500 hours
Annual fuel cost £/Gallon £6.151 *(April 22) £12,302 £9226
Annual Fuel saving per machine £3,076
Fuel saving for a fleet of 300 machines £922,800
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In today’s climate, we understand that reducing costs and improving efficiency are key to ensuring profitability. More than ever the performance of the compact excavator is essential to the day to day productivity of job sites and there are increasing economic pressures on the operator to get more done in a day.

A Miller GTS compact quick coupler is an investment that adds convenience and flexibility to your compact excavator in just about every application. Purchasing a Miller GTS compact quick coupler can save valuable time on-site switching between a bucket, ripper, rake, mechanical grabs, etc. and as such can be transformational for decreasing the time it takes to tackle a job that requires different attachments.

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In some cases, we have had customers saving over an hour a day from faster changeovers and reduced double digging due to the increased versatility on offer from a fully hydraulic compact quick coupler. If you want to increase productivity and reduce the idle time of your compact machines, a Miller GTS compact quick coupler is a must-have piece of equipment at a cost you can afford.

Other Additional Customer Benefits from Making the Switch:

• Reducing equipment idle time lowers maintenance costs.
• Reducing machine-hours increases resale value.
• Adding to this is lost or wasted warranty—so many new machines use up the hour-terms of their warranties just idling and never have the chance to fail under load.
• If the maintenance system is based on hours of utilization, then the owner incurs unnecessary preventive-maintenance costs.
• Time is money, a fully hydraulic quick coupler could be the best solution for decreasing the time it takes to change attachments from minutes to seconds
• A hydraulic quick coupler can decrease the time it takes to tackle a job that requires different attachments allowing you the flexibility to take on more types of jobs.

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