Semi-Trailer Transport Services: Open vs. Enclosed

The choice of whether to transport your heavy load in an open or enclosed trailer can be a difficult one to make. Many factors need to be considered.

However, this article presents you with some information to help you differentiate between the two and make an informed decision when transporting your heavy load wherever, whenever.

Open Vs. Enclosed

An open trailer is one in which your load is exposed to the external environment because it has no walls or roof. This transport is best used to transport irregular, oversized loads such as farm equipment, heavy pipeline equipment, and many more that are not prone to environmental destruction. Examples include:

  • Two-level multi carriers: Most commonly preferred
  • Single level multi carriers: Used to move expedited deliveries
  • Dully truck (single-level tow trailer): Used for short distance or local deliveries

On the other hand, enclosed trailers have a roof and four sides that completely enclose the load within a limited space. These are suitable for the transportation of highly valued loads that can be damaged by external elements while on transit. You can also use this type of trailer if you’re concerned about the physical security of your delicate or expensive cargo. It’s also best when transporting goods that need to remain in a temperature-controlled environment. Examples include:

  • Multi-carrier enclosed trailers: The most inexpensive choice
  • Two or one-carrier trailers: Used to transport heavy antiques, rare vehicles, and other highly valued loads.

Advantages of an Open Trailer

Below are some benefits of choosing an open trailer:

  • Higher carriage capacity: Open trailers can carry more loads compared to enclosed ones. For example, in the case of vehicle carriers, they have double-deckers that can accommodate more vehicles. This is not possible with enclosed trailers.
  • Less fuel: Considering the lack of walls and roofs, open trailers are lighter compared to their enclosed counterparts. For this reason, their fuel consumption rate is low, thus offering environmental protection.
  • Less expensive: Using less fuel means lower expenses for the company and client. In addition, the high carriage capacity reduces transport costs are the cost is shared among more individuals.
  • Readily available: There is a high demand for open transport trailers than enclosed ones, perhaps due to their affordability.
  • Better visibility: This is an advantage to truckers. An open trailer allows them to monitor the load while on transit constantly.
  • Faster: Open trailer transport is quicker due to the availability of trucks, easy scheduling processes, and ever-growing demand.

Drawbacks of Open Trailer Transportation

  • No protection from environmental elements such as rain, snow, and road debris

To mitigate this drawback, heavy-load transport companies employ competent truckers who understand the value of your load. They will ensure your load is well strapped and protected against mobility issues and know the best time to hit the road.

Advantages of an Enclosed Trailer

Here are some benefits to choosing an enclosed trailer for your cargo transport.

  • Greater security: There is no way for thieves or other unauthorized personnel to access your cargo. You can rest easy knowing that the load will arrive safely.
  • Protection from damage: With the cargo contained in a closed environment, there is no concern about damage from extreme weather conditions or road debris.

Cons of an Enclosed Trailer

    • Expensive than open trailers: This is due to low carriage capacity. In this case, the cost is shared among fewer people.
    • Less visibility: The trucker is unable to carry out routine checks on the cargo while on transit.
    • Less availability: There are fewer enclosed trailers, making the scheduling process harder and longer. This also affects the delivery times.
    • Less fuel efficiency: Enclosed trailers are heavy, resulting in higher fuel consumption. This also contributes to a higher budget.

Although you might expect an enclosed trailer to cost more than its open counterpart, the added benefits that it provides make them worth it. They offer peace of mind and increased protection for your load. However, this does not mean that it’s the most appropriate for transporting your heavy load. Open trailer transportation is easy to schedule and offers faster delivery at a lower cost. Click here to learn more about our services.