Buying a tractor is a big investment. You want to find one that will meet your needs now and well into the future. Asking yourself a few questions and having the answers ready when you head out to the dealership can ensure you get what you need without worry.
1. What Attachments Do You Need It To Accommodate?
The work you are planning to do will have a big influence on the type of tractor you need. Some options you might want to consider include hay spears, buckets, loading forks, and mowers. Quick connect tractor attachments increase versatility and make changing implements out easy.
2. What Comfort Features Do You Want?
Sure, long hours in the seat of a tractor isn’t exactly glamorous, but there are some great convenience features that can make it a whole lot more comfortable than in years past. Decide ahead of time what features you want and which ones you are willing to forgo. This way you won’t feel on the spot or pressured at the dealership. A few options you might see include sunshades and canopies, enclosed cabs, heat, air conditioning and swivel seats to make getting in and out easier.
3. How Important Is Maneuverability to You?
Bigger isn’t always better, especially if you have a heavily wooded property or you will be maneuvering between buildings or other obstacles. If you need a tractor that can get in pretty tight spaces, you will most likely be looking at a compact model. There is somewhat of a trade-off between size and function, but today’s compact tractors can be incredibly versatile. Keep in mind that some tasks will simply take longer with a smaller machine.
4. Do You Have a Service Center or Dealer Nearby?
Always ask about warranty length and restrictions. Most manufacturers require schedules service to be performed and documented before they will honor a warranty. Some will require you to have it services by authorized dealers. If you don’t have an authorized center near you, repairs and regular maintenance can quickly become a hassle.
5. What Type of Terrain Will You Cover?
Tractors can be found in both two- and four-wheel-drive configurations. If you are going to be working in muddy, hilly, or very uneven terrain, then it makes sense to step up to the latter. Four-wheel-drive tractors are a bit more expensive upfront, but they have several advantages that can make it a worthwhile investment in the long run.
Take the time to assess your needs and wants before you decide one particular make or model of tractor. With the right combination of horsepower, features, and implements, it will be a valuable tool on your property for years to come.