Choosing the right Skid Steer for Your Wisconsin Operation


Choosing the Right Skid Steer for Your Wisconsin Operation


Shopping for new skid steers can be an overwhelming process, especially because there is such a wide range of vehicles available, along with many factors to consider. Thankfully, you can rest easy knowing that purchasing a skid steer will be extremely beneficial to your operation, no matter which model you choose. But because of the varying models offered, it’s best to find the one that most closely aligns with your operation so you can get the best results.

We’ve been helping our customers find the best construction equipment to fit their operation here in Wisconsin for over 70 years. Throughout this process, we’ve been able to learn more than a thing or two, so let us help break it down for you!

A John Deere 318G Skid Steer dumping dirt on a construction site

What factors should you focus on when choosing a skid steer?

There are a few different factors you’ll want to look out for when you’re browsing for skid steers. While each one will carry different weight depending on your operation, you should take them all into consideration. 

  1. Lift

Skid steers can take on two different types of lifts: vertical and radial. Vertical-lift boom offers more lift height and reach at the top of the lift path, giving more stability and truck-loading ability. A radial-lift boom reaches further at mid-range lift heights. This is more suited for digging, grading, and backfilling. 

Think about the different ways you will apply your skid steer and make sure it aligns with the boom lift’s capabilities. Are you planning to tackle jobs on the ground or are you going to need to reach up high?

The 312GR and the 316GR both offer radial-lift while the 314G, 318G, 320G, 324G, 330G, 332G each offer vertical-lift.

  1. Size and horsepower

If you have a smaller operation with tight spaces and narrow entryways, it’s a good idea to choose a small-frame skid steer. Also take the surface of the operation into account. If the terrain is more sensitive, a lighter weight will leave a lighter impact. The 312GR leaves the lightest footprint with an operating weight of 5,905 lb while the 332G offers the largest size with a weight of 10,000 lb. model.

Think about the work you’ll be doing in your operation, and find a minimal horsepower that will work best to accommodate. With models ranging from 48 hp to 96.6 hp, you can find an option that fits into your equation. 

Compare the specs of each skid steer here.

  1. Features and Amenities

Most of our skid steers come with core features and user comforts to make your work days go by just a little faster, but there are several different varying features and upgrades that you’ll have to pick and choose from. Will you want heat/AC? How important is complete operator comfort to you? Are the controls laid out to your liking? 

Our small-frame models offer incredible value with a fluid-efficient diesel and simple operation. Certain wheel options allow the G series to slim down even more to fit through narrow openings, while enhanced visibility allows you to be in the know about what’s going on around you. Check out our 312GR, 314G, 316GR, 317G, and 318G to learn more. 

The larger-frame models include a little bit more, but still offer an incredible bang for your buck. Even stronger pushing power and bucket breakout force will give you the ability to carve through anything, while the two-speed drivetrain offers speeds up to 12 mph. An EH boom performance package is offered to shorten cycle times and speed production in repetitive boom applications. Check out our 320G, 324G, 330G, and 332G to learn more. 

  1. Prices

Now let’s talk finances. Before you start browsing, decide on a budget that best fits your operation. It’s important to take a couple of things into consideration before you come to a number. How long and how often do you plan on using your skid steer? If this piece of equipment is going to become a part of your team, then you might want to treat it as an investment. Plan on getting increased productivity, boosted efficiency, and decreased downtime as a return.

A John Deere 316GR Skid Steer leveling out dirt along a sidewalk

It seems like you have some decisions to make, but you’re certainly not alone. If you have any questions about these skid steers or are having a hard time choosing the right one for your operation, call our team and we’ll be happy to help guide you to success!