“I need a price on a truck scale”
“How much does a 70′ x 11′ foot truck scale cost?”
We typically get some version of these statements or questions just about every day.
A rough estimate, on average, would be $65K-$85K for a 70×11 truck scale. It could be a little less money and it certainly could be more money, depending on what you are looking to do. We’ve modified this number to try and account for the 2022 and 2023 inflationary price increases. This price estimate is for the scale. You also have other costs such as the foundation, delivery, installation, and more. See below and we’ll provide more details on those costs.
Bottomline, you need to work with a scale company and obtain a real quote to make sure of the current prices.
So if the Truck Scale Costs This Much, What Else is there to Consider?
We have written this article to help you in budgeting for a truck scale cost. While costs may vary from market to market, this provides an accurate range estimate while also highlighting other factors to consider with your specific installation. Everything that we have laid out below assumes a standard 70 ft. truck scale length.
Scale Foundation Excavation and Concrete Work (Estimate: $25,000 to $40,000)
The concrete work for the truck scale foundation is a very important step and should be handled by experienced workers. A typical foundation is made up of concrete piers poured below the local frost line and flush with the surrounding grade. A 4” washout slab is poured between the piers and helps to prevent vegetation growth while also allowing for material to be cleared from under the scale. A 10 foot flat and level approach is also required at each end of the scale. These aid in a smoother transition on and off the scale.
Lastly, sloped ramps will be required at each end of the approach. The typical ramp length will be around 25 feet for a 70′ scale. Some state Weights & Measures departments will have rules governing scale placement, under scale clearance and ramp lengths. Be sure to check with your local jurisdiction before breaking ground.
70’ x 11’ Scale Options: Sight Rail, Weight Indicator, Ticket Printer and 4” Remote Display. (Estimate: $12,000 to $25,000)
The 70’ x 11’ truck scale is the most common size for typical, over-the-road tractor-trailer weighing. A scale with all-steel construction allows for the scale to be delivered, installed, and weighing vehicles all on the same day. We provided the estimate for it up above in the first paragraph.
Safety sight rail is a very common option as the scale platform will typically be between 14” to 20” above the ground. This won’t help keep the truck on the scale but it will help guide the driver.
The basic weight indicator will display weight, process a truck in/out operation and print a ticket with transaction information.
Lastly, the 4” LED remote display is required in some states and is needed so truck operators can see that the scale reads ZERO prior to driving on the scale. The scoreboard also allows drivers to compare the printed weight with what is shown on the readout.
Flatbed Scale Freight, Crane for lifting and Installation / Calibration by Scale Service Company. (Estimate: $10,000 to $15,000)
Wide load flatbed freight is required for the scale to be shipped from the manufacturing facility to the installation site. Obviously, the further the flatbed truck must travel the more expensive the freight cost will be.
A crane will be required to off-load the flatbed and set the truck scale modules. Crane cost consists of time on-site and the size of crane required. A crane that can be positioned a few feet from the scale foundation will cost less than one that must be sized for extended reach due to obstructions such as buildings, power lines, and/or hoppers/silos.
A professional scale service company is typically involved with removing the scale from the flatbed, setting the scale on the foundation, anchoring the scale to the foundation, wiring the scale parts/accessories and calibrating the scale with certified weights.
TOTAL PROJECT COST FOR 70×11 TRUCK SCALE = $90,000 – $130,000
While we hope to have shared some insight in budgeting for your new truck scale, we need to mention that there are other situations that may arise to add significant costs to your truck scale project.
Some of these include but are not limited to:
Any project that happens after normal business hours or on weekends, or holidays.
Foundation additions such as concrete curbing, walkways and/or extended ramps to adjust for slope grade.
Excavation that encounters any type of utility service that will need to be relocated.
Excavation that encounters poor ground soil conditions or significant movement of soil because of elevations.
Electrical power, network wiring and/or communication wiring that needs to be trenched.
We understand that installing your first truck scale can be overwhelming and we are here to help. If you need an unbiased opinion or somebody to come out and look at your site, be sure to give us a call.
It’s hard to give an exact answer because every situation is a little different.
Maybe you’re replacing an existing CMI truck scale. Or perhaps you’re looking to extend a 60′ Weigh-Tronix truck scale into a 70′ scale. Or perhaps you’re putting in a brand new B-Tek scale and will need the concrete foundation formed and poured as well.
All of these scenarios work to show why it’s important to discuss your application with your scale salesperson to determine which products and services will work best for your situation.
Parts to Consider When Buying a Truck Scale
There are several major components involved with a truck scale purchase. First, is the actual scale itself, also sometimes called the Weighbridge, which is the main surface for the trucks being weighed. Weighbridge lengths vary from around 20 feet to over 100 feet. Widths vary from around 10 feet to 14 feet but are usually 11 feet. Typical weighbridge platform tops are either steel or concrete.
When you talk about the Weighbridge, you will also probably be told about CLC ratings. Concentrated Load Capacity, or CLC, is an industry recognized rating of a vehicle or axle load scale. The rating defines the maximum load for which the weighbridge is designed as applied by a group of two axles with a center line spaced 4 feet apart and an axle width of 8 feet apart. This is an area where you can save money in certain situations.
If you will have limited amounts of daily traffic, then chances are you may not need a really high CLC rated Weighbridge. Be sure to discuss this with your scale salesperson.
Digital Weight Indicators
The Digital Weight Indicator is the next major component to consider, which displays your truck weight. We have several different truck scale indicator models to choose from. This is an important part of a truck scale. You’ll definitely want to choose a readout that has truck storage and serial ports for your ticket printer and remote display.
Loads cells are another important component to consider. Most truck scales usually have around eight cells inside. The three most common types of load cells are analog, digital, or hydraulic. Each has its own advantages. This is a subject you will definitely want to discuss with your scale salesperson as this can raise or lower the upfront cost, but will likely have a big impact on the long term cost of ownership.
The next important part of a truck scale is the Foundation, which is simply the concrete base that the load cells and weighbridge rest on. These are normally above ground with approaches on each side. However, we also offer truck scales that sit in a pit.
Peripherals are the final components to consider when buying a truck scale. These include items like truck management software, ticket printers, remote displays, traffic lights, intercoms, and other accessories. Some peripherals will be necessary while others are just nice to have, depending on your particular situation.
If you contact more than one scale company, you may hear a distributor undermine a particular brand. For example; Rice Lake vs Cardinal Scale Manufacturing or Mettler Toledo vs Avery Weigh-Tronix. All of the companies mentioned are reputable brands, you will just need to determine which manufacturer you prefer, which local scale company you like best, and which features you want and need.
Learn More With Central Carolina Scale
As you can hopefully see, there really isn’t a one answer to the question, how much does a truck scale cost? If you’re in the market for a truck scale, our sales team at Central Carolina Scale can help you weigh your options. Contact us today at (919) 776-7737 to learn more.