Moving heavy objects with your bare hands may be risky. Every time you do this, you expose yourself to serious injuries. The risk of hurting yourself is even higher with age. So if you’re no longer young, you should resort to other methods to move heavy stuff.
A wheelbarrow could be an alternative. But part of the load is distributed in your body and the risk of injury is still there. Dump carts reduce that risk to zero because all the weight is distributed on the wheels. That way, you just need to make minimal effort to move the cart.
If part of your daily routine involves carrying heavy loads, using a dump cart can help you be efficient. Today, we'll show you how to choose the best dump cart for lawn tractor. Additionally, you'll find a top 10 list with the best-selling models on the market.
Lawn Dump Cart: Buying Guide
1. Load capacity
The first thing you need to consider before purchasing any dump cart is the load capacity. This determines the maximum weight that the cart can resist without suffering damage.
Usually, the load capacity affects the final price of the product as well. The more resistant the product, the higher the price. It isn’t convenient to choose an exaggerated capacity if the budget is short. To choose correctly, you should first know the use you intend to give your cart.
For example, if you intend to use your cart to transport tools or dump yard waste, you won’t need more than 600 lbs. On the other hand, if you want to transport heavy materials, you'll need much more than 600 lbs.
For heavy-duty operation, carts in the range of 1200-2000 lbs of load capacity are the best.
Steel and plastic are the most common materials used in the manufacture of dump carts. The type of material you choose will affect the resistance and price of the cart as well. If you’re looking for maximum durability and resistance, steel is the best material.
Steel carts are best for heavy loading. Steel is resistant to high temperatures and friction. Ergo, steel carts have a superior weight capacity and useful life. However, they do have a major defect. They may be too heavy.
Some steel carts use steel mesh to reduce weight and improve cart mobility. These kinds of carts are more versatile, because they can be carried by hand or by machine.
On the other hand, plastic dump carts are much lighter and heavier. Furthermore, they’re more resistant to humidity and don’t generate rust. However, plastic tends to lose its resistance when exposed to the UV rays. In addition, it may scratch so easily with abrasive materials. Because of that, plastic dump carts aren’t the best for transporting sand or rocks.
However, they’re the best alternative for gardening and other light duties.
The wheels should be resistant to heat and abrasion. Additionally, they should be large to easily move across uneven surfaces. For use in muddy terrain or snow, the wheels should be wide.
The wheels should have enough contact surface to guarantee maximum grip and resistance. It’s also desirable that they have an irregular pattern with deep grooves. This way, there will be a better grip between the wheel and the terrain.
If you need to move heavy loads, always opt for big wheels. Small wheels are better for light duties.
In order to move more things, you'll need enough volume inside the bucket. In these cases, the rule is simple. The higher the volume, the better. Storage volume is usually limited by the bed and the sides. However, the side walls of the bucket can be useful in certain cases and useless in others.
For example, when you need to transport loose material such as rocks and sand. The sides and bed liners are necessary to contain such materials. When you’re trying to move something big, like a long log, the sides are an obstacle.
For that reason, carts with removable sides and bed liners are the best. You can use them to move loads that take up too much volume, such as firewood and wooden boards.
5. Additional features
There are other additional features that you should look for on a dump cart. For example, a quick-release mechanism. This feature allows you to tilt the bucket of your cart without any effort. This may be quite convenient for you if you suffer from spinal pain or any other similar health issue.
A soft-padded handle is necessary to cushion high impacts on your hands and improve grip. The handle should be ergonomic to better fit the shape of your hand.
If you’ve already found the model that meets all your requirements, it’s time to look for prices. If your budget is limited, it’s advisable to look for deals on shopping websites and physical stores.
You can find the factory price of the product on its official website. Then, you can use that price as a reference to compare with other purchase options.
After you’ve found enough prices, choose the option closest to your budget. If you don't want to take risks, never choose the cheapest option.
Importance of a Dump Cart
Here are several reasons why it’s so important to use dump carts to carry heavy loads:
- Protect yourself from injuries
When carried by a lawn tractor or any other motor vehicle, dump carts protect you from injuries. The only effort you’ll have to make is to step on the gas pedal.
- You can transport a large volume of material
With the help of a dump cart, you can move in minutes what would take hours to move with your bare hands. That means you can move a large volume of material in no time and without effort.
Above all, dump carts are better than wheelbarrows. While wheelbarrows have two wheels, dump carts have four. This means more stability. Additionally, dump carts are easier to offload than wheelbarrows, requiring minimal physical effort.
Using a dump cart helps you finish the job faster. That way, you'll have more free time to invest in other activities.
Care & Maintenance Tips
A frequent maintenance routine will help extend the useful life or your dump cart. Here are some tips you should follow:
- Wash your dump cart after each use. Pay attention to critical areas where gunk can accumulate
- Grease the wheel bearings and other moving parts when it’s necessary. Doing this will reduce the wear caused by the friction
- Dry the surface of the cart before storing it. Small drops of water on the metal surface may generate rust
- Tighten nuts and bolts when necessary. Loosen fasteners can cause vibration and friction between the frame and the bucket
- Replace the wheels if the pattern on the rubber is too worn. Smooth wheels don’t generate enough friction
- Don't overtighten nuts and bolts. Doing so may ruin the threads, making them much more difficult to remove
It's Time to Wrap Up
As you can see, everything is easier and safer with the best dump cart for lawn tractor. These essential garden supplies protect you from injuries and help you get more efficient. They’re easier to use than a wheelbarrow, minimizing use of force as a result.
However, for best results you should choose the right size, material and load capacity. If you don’t want to commit mistakes, carefully follow the tips that we’ve just given you. Also remember to apply a frequent maintenance routine so your cart can last for more years.
1. Can I use a zero turn mower to pull a cart?
Ans. Yes. As long as the cart and its load don’t exceed 200 lbs.
2. Do I need to grease the wheels of the cart before the first use?
Ans. Yes. It’s always a good idea to grease the wheel bearings before using the dump cart for the first time. That will reduce the friction between metal parts.
3. How can I make my own cart axle?
Tools and materials
- ½-Inch steel tube (3-mm thick, 60-cm long, 1 unit)
- ½-Inch steel bolt (10-cm long, 2 units)
- Steel retaining clip (2 units)
- ½-Inch washer (2 units)
- Cart wheel (2 units)
- Drill and drill bit
- First of all, insert a ½-inch bolt inside each end of a ½-inch steel tube
- Then, perforate the tube at 5-cm from each end. Make sure of piercing the tube and the bolts with the drill bit
- After that, remove the bolts from inside the steel tube. Put a ½-inch washer around each bolt
- Then, pierce the wheels of the cart with the bolts. Make sure the washers are on top each wheel. Insert the bolts in each end of the tube
- Finally, secure the tube and the bolts with the retaining clips
4. How much time does it take to remove the wheels?
Ans. Using the right tools, removing a single wheel will take no more than 5 minutes. So, removing all four wheels from the cart should take no more than 20 minutes.
5. What is the right procedure to operate the dump feature?
Ans. To operate the dump feature you just need to pull and lift the quick-release handle. Usually, this handle is just below the bucket. Once released, the bucket will automatically tilt by gravity.
6. Is it hard to assemble a dump cart?
Ans. No. The assembly shouldn’t take more than 30 minutes with the right tools. Before getting started, make sure to read the instructions.