During the 2020 NTEA Show, Will the Welder took time to talk to several industry experts on what’s better in salt and sand spreaders: auger drive or drag chain. See what people prefer and why below.
Opinions are across the board on this one. Some guys have a strong preference for chain drag salt spreaders, others prefer augers, and some really don’t have a strong feeling about either! Some opinions depend on the type of salt or salt/sand mixture being used. Other opinions are based on geographic area and the type of weather they typically get.
“In Alaska it’s just about solely drag chain. They use what’s called a chip or F-Chip and augers just don’t move that. If you’re moving just salt or a salt and sand mix [augers] work fine for that, but my customers use F chip so they want to get a chain drag, not an auger drive.”Tod Bozer of Bob’s Service in Alaska
“I like auger drive versus a chain. The chain is always dumping material off the bottom side and you can’t keep material clean underneath the bed of the truck.”Jerry Heyer of Jerry’s Service in Pennsylvania
“I don’t have a strong opinion one way or the other, but on the auger one thing that’s been a selling feature for it is the fact that [salt] doesn’t leave the spreader. On a drive chain you… end up making a pile of salt in front of the spreader. A lot of guys don’t like [salt] in their beds or new trucks.”Jeen Stork of Stork’s Plows in Pennsylvania
“I prefer the auger. It’s a lot less maintenance, there are a lot less moving parts to worry about.”Steve Jennings of Jennings Welding & Fabrication in New York
“The auger drive seems to be the preference and I prefer that. [It has] less moving parts, easier to do maintenance on it.”Rondo Ziegler of Rondo Enterprises & Trailers in Illinois
“When it comes down to it I think I like the auger better… because it’s the cleaner spreader. With the conveyor chain spreaders, you’re going to have all that mess in the bed at the end of the night. With an auger style you don’t have all the residual build up in the front of the hopper and it’s just and easier clean up.”Eric Flores of Push-N-Pull in Pensylvania
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