There are many different types of cargo trailers and knowing which one to use for your shipping needs can be the key to finding the right carriers and getting your goods to market. For grain, gravel and other loads containing tons of small particles, hopper bottom trailers are the standard. These trailers feature open topped containers which are covered with a heavy-duty rolling tarp during transportation and have hoppers underneath for easy unloading.
Where Can You Find Them?
Finding hopper bottom carriers can be easier than you think and there are even websites designed to connect you to transport companies for individual loads or ongoing contracts. For most farmers and manufacturers, it is more cost-effective to hire shipping companies to deliver your goods than it is to purchase your own truck and trailer, hire someone to drive the loads, pay for upkeep and cover expenses in the long-term.
How Can You Use Them?
This type of trailer is commonly used to deliver grain, gravel, fertilizer and even salt used for winter roadways or in food production. The product is dumped into the hopper bottom trailer from the top, usually by a loader, and the hopper plates at the bottom can be released by a manually turned handle which is usually locked during transit. To unload, the trailer can be parked over underground tanks or have a conveyor belt moved under the opening.
Hopper bottom trailers are ideal for moving large loads consisting of small particles such as sand, fertilizer and grain. You can buy one of these trailers for your own fleet, or contact a carrier to haul loads for you, depending on your needs. Most agricultural producers will find it more cost-effective to hire a carrier than to maintain their own fleet of trailers, trucks and drivers.