Tips for First-Time Equipment Rental

Many companies turn to renting for a convenient, flexible, cost-effective construction equipment solution. A rental can fill an immediate need without you making a long-term commitment. When you rent, you'll avoid costs like storage, maintenance, depreciation and insurance — and renting is ideal when you only need equipment on a temporary or seasonal basis.

If you're new to renting equipment, you probably have questions about how the process works and what to expect when you call the rental company. Here at The Cat® Rental Store, we understand that renting heavy equipment can be confusing. We've assembled the following construction equipment rental tips to make it easier — and help you avoid costly mistakes.

Tips for First-Time Equipment Rental


If you have the right information, you'll rent the right equipment. Know:

  • What you need: The last thing you want is to spend money on a rental and get it to your job site — only to discover that it's not suited for the task. Do some preliminary research to determine the exact machine your job requires as well as the correct size. If you work with a reputable provider like The Cat Rental Store, you'll have access to expert product selection advice you can trust.
  • When and for how long you'll need it: Unless you're renting at the last minute to replace a broken-down machine, it always pays to plan. Creating a realistic schedule will help you determine the best time frame for your rental agreement. Pick the equipment up or have it delivered to your site the day before you need it so that it's there and ready to go first thing in the morning.
  • All the costs and fees upfront: A rental company that offers the lowest rate isn't always the best option. Some providers include hidden fees that drive up the final price. Scrutinize the rental agreement before signing on the dotted line to make sure you know what you're getting for your money.
  • What additional services the rental company provides: Available services such as maintenance and repairs vary between rental providers. Find out which services you'll get — and how much they'll cost.
  • How to use the equipment properly: If you're a first-time renter, there's a good chance that you or your operators will be unfamiliar with the machine. Getting trained on how to operate the equipment correctly and safely can maximize productivity and minimize the risk of job site accidents and injuries.
  • When you must return the equipment: Make sure you bring the rental back when it's due. Why pay for an extra day or late fees for a machine you're no longer using?


By making smart choices and thinking ahead, you can get more out of your rental equipment and save money. Always follow these three tips for first-time equipment renters to get the most out of your rental equipment:

  • Find the perfect equipment for your job: The easiest way to save time and money when using rental equipment is to pick the tool that's best suited to your job. Always do your research and make sure to find the right-sized equipment, and don't be afraid to ask around for another expert's thoughts on the matter. 
  • Learn the art of timing your rentals: Tracking down the right piece of rental equipment can be tricky. Scheduling a rental too early can quickly cause inconveniences if your schedule moves faster or slower than you anticipated, while waiting until the last minute to get a rental may limit the brands, equipment and sizes you can choose from. The best rule of thumb for rental timing is to wait until you're sure that your project is proceeding on schedule and choose from a large vendor who has access to multiple equipment sizes and configurations in case your project requires specialized machinery. 
  • Watch the weather carefully: When you rent equipment, it comes to your job site rain or shine. To maximize the efficiency and usefulness of your rental equipment, always make sure to watch the weather and schedule rentals when you can make the most of them.

Equipment Rental Do's and Don'ts

Renting the right tools and machinery is vital for the success of any construction project. The proper guidance can help many construction company owners and managers make the right choice when renting equipment to save time and money. To make sure you can rent cost-effectively and accomplish your goals, here are the top rental do's and don'ts:

1. Do Ask Questions

As a first-time renter, you probably have many questions about your equipment, the renting process or other safety concerns. At The Cat Rental Store, we encourage you to ask questions throughout the rental process. We'll make sure you have access to an experienced pro with the answers you need to find the perfect piece of machinery for your project and leave with some new knowledge.

2. Don't Rent Without Speaking to the Operators First

The best way to know what size of equipment you need is to talk with your crew. Since your machine operators will be dealing with the equipment on a daily basis, they are excellent resources and can help you choose the correct tools to complete your projects safely and efficiently. 

3. Do Practice Proper Safety Protocols

Your safety program for rental equipment should include following the correct operating procedures recommended by your equipment dealer. Ensuring your employees receive the proper training and use the right personal protective equipment (PPE) will keep your team and your job site safe.

4. Don't Select Low-Quality Equipment

The easiest way to avoid renting low-quality equipment is by working with a reputable dealer such as The Cat Rental Store. 

Low-quality equipment can affect many areas of your job site — and your company's reputation. With poorly maintained rentals, you may need to stop working halfway through a job to service your machinery, which could prevent you from finishing your project on time. Take note of factors such as general appearance, drips and leaks when choosing your equipment.

5. Do Rent From the Right Equipment Dealer

Renting your equipment from the right dealer can positively impact your current projects and help you secure future contracts. As you search for an equipment dealer, you may want to ask the following questions:

  • Will this dealer give honest advice to prevent equipment rental mistakes?
  • How well does this dealer maintain their equipment?
  • Do they have outlets in convenient locations?
  • What brands do they carry?
  • How long have they been in business?
  • What is the reputation of this company?

When you choose The Cat Rental Store for your machinery and work tool attachment rental needs, you can be confident you're working with a reliable company that offers high-quality equipment. We carry a wide variety of machinery at competitive rates to help our customers find the rentals they need to complete their jobs safely and on time. Take the next step and rent your machinery from The Cat Rental Store today. 


The Cat Rental Store carries a wide selection of construction machines at competitive rates. With our commitment to service, you can count on us for reliable guidance to maximize your rental experience.

With more than 1,300 locations globally, finding The Cat Rental Store near you is more convenient than ever. Browse our equipment lineup and rent what you need from trustworthy professionals who do whatever it takes. Give us a call at 1-800-RENT-CAT for more useful construction equipment rental tips or to get the process started, and contact us online for a quick quote.

Find The Cat Rental Store Near You

Related Posts

How to Scale up Your Business With Rental Equipment

How to Scale up Your Business With Rental Equipment

Growing your company is a rewarding and profitable way to bring in new opportunities. Learn how to scale up your business with rental equipment.

Read More
Planning for Your Equipment Needs

Planning for Your Equipment Needs

If you work in construction or another high-demand industry, you likely spend a lot of time planning for projects. Learn tips with The Cat Rental Store.

Read More
How to Finance Construction Equipment

How to Finance Construction Equipment

If you're looking to add construction equipment to your fleet, financing is a flexible payment method that helps you mitigate financial risk. Learn more.

Read More
How to Use Rental Equipment to Grow Your Business

How to Use Rental Equipment to Grow Your Business

Whether you're starting from the ground up or already have a foundation, renting can support your business process. Grow with The Cat Rental Store.

Read More