To rent or to buy? It’s a question that plagues everyone in their lifetime, but for those in the wind turbine servicing industry options have always been limited. That is, until Sage Oil Vac began its Gear Oil Exchange (GOEX) Rental Program in 2009.
“Sage Oil Vac started the GOEX Rental Program based on the demand within the industry and from customer requests,” said Midwest Territory Manager, Chance Castillo. “Some companies needed to provide oil changes but didn’t necessarily want to make the full investment of purchasing.”
Sage currently rents out 1E6M-4 and 1E6K-3 models (with plans to add a 1D6G-2 to the fleet in spring 2017). Each model utilizes two tanks for Sage’s unique pump-free oil exchange system which allows the end-user to dispense and drain oil faster with vacuum technology. The 1E6M-4 has an additional two tanks for full flush and rinse capabilities, while the 1E6K-3 has one additional tank for limited rinsing capabilities or to carry a hydraulic fluid.
“How do our customers decide on renting versus buying? Well that all depends on the wind farm,” Castillo explained. “With our GEOX, the time between maintenance periods can be extended to anywhere from two to five years. It often makes more sense to rent a unit for a couple of months, perform the oil changes, and not have to think about it for a few years.”
Sage Oil Vac completes a thorough cleaning and checklist program between renters – new filters are installed and tanks are purged.
“Renters enjoy this program because it saves them from the initial capital investment and the hassle of maintaining the unit during the unused periods,” Castillo said. “The only thing they need to worry about is having a truck big enough to run the system. A ¾-ton truck is the minimum weight needed, but a 1-ton pickup is preferred as they can weigh up to 12,000 lbs during operation.”
GOEX systems in the program can be shipped anywhere within the continental U.S. on behalf of the customer or they can be picked up and dropped off at Sage Oil Vac headquarters in Amarillo, Texas. Training can be completed a few different ways — via a YouTube tutorial, if the unit is picked up in person in Amarillo, or a technician can travel to a wind location for an additional expense.
“I would conservatively say our rental units have performed as many as 3,000 gearbox rinse and flush operations on wind turbines across North America in the last six to seven years,” Castillo said.
Contact Sage Oil Vac for more GOEX Rental Program information and pricing!