Yet anothe rental truck question: Gas Vs. Diesel

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Yet anothe rental truck question: Gas Vs. Diesel

Postby illy dilly » Mon May 02, 2011 1:10 pm

I thought for sure I've read a thread about this, but after searching and searching I couldn't find it. So please forgive me for asking a rental truck question, when there are already so damned many!

This year we're going to be a decent sized camp, 13 or 14 people. The plan is to drive out in our 34' Bounder, a Passenger car, and a rented box truck.
We have started talking to the local box truck rental places.
We were able to get a quote for a 16' gas for $45 a day or a 22' diesel for $55 a day, for 11 days. So an extra 110 bucks for the diesel.
The rate per mile was the same for both trucks as well, $.10/mile.
Assuming the cost of gas goes up to $5 bucks a gallon and diesel up to $5.50 (please correct me if that doesn't sound right). On the Renters web site they say the 16' gas gets 6-10 mpg, and the 22' diesel gets 8-12mpg. We would probably fill the 16' floor area completely, and about half way up the walls. We probably would only fill the 22' 1/4 to 1/3 way up the walls.
Denver to BRC =about 1200 miles. So we would need about 150 gallons of gas, or 120 gallons of diesel. So then it would be about $750 in gas, and $660 in diesel- which would be off set by the extra rental cost.

My question is, since the estimated cost is similar, would there be benefits and disadvantages to either truck?

At work we have a GMC and Isuzu box truck that are 16' and 18' both gas. I have very little experience with diesel box trucks.
All thoughts, tips, tricks, and snarcs are appreciated!
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Postby Dustdevil » Mon May 02, 2011 1:27 pm

I would not count on any 22' truck getting anywhere near 12 mpg. My experience with a loaded 22' is closer to 8 mpg. This sounds like you are using Penske???? If so, you might also price Budget AND let them know what the Penske price is, the truck rental companies are hungry right now. I would suggest not using Uhaul. Their big trucks are junk. Their 16 and 18' trucks are pretty good, though.
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Postby illy dilly » Mon May 02, 2011 1:39 pm

Dustdevil wrote:I would not count on any 22' truck getting anywhere near 12 mpg. My experience with a loaded 22' is closer to 8 mpg. This sounds like you are using Penske????


Damn Dustdevil, How'd ya know? The other company I was talking to was Ryder, but they couldn't give me 'real numbers' until I was ready to say yes or no.
Thanks for the advice! I wouldn't expect the 22' diesel to get near 12, probably(hopefully) average around 10mpg. And hopefully the 16' gas would average around 8mpg.
From what I've read before, diesel trucks will typically get better miles per gallon than gas.
My other thought was that with the 22' having more bed space and out gear loaded lower the truck would be less top heavy. Giving us better road stability through the winds of Wyoming. Does this make since or am I totally off my rocker?
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Postby gyre » Mon May 02, 2011 2:04 pm

True.

The diesel may be less affected by a full load, but there are many factors.
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Postby Dustdevil » Mon May 02, 2011 3:08 pm

Unless you are loading at or near capacity, common sense packing will take care of any load issues. Heaviest items on the floor, lightest on top. I run large rental trucks across the country many times a year. They are always loaded to capacity. I prefer Budget, by Penske is a close second. I always run near the max capacity for the trucks. West bound on 80 through Wy you will usually get a head wind. On occasions you might get a strong Southerly wind. Pay attention and you won't have any problems.
Ryder is not worth dealing with. If you go with Penske, they offer a discount for AAA members.
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Postby oneeyeddick » Mon May 02, 2011 3:20 pm

I rented the Penske 22' truck when we moved to Reno 3 years ago, FULLY loaded(overloaded) and towing a car hauler I got 7.7 MPG average coming from Seattle.

Great truck BTW...
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Postby Elderberry » Mon May 02, 2011 3:21 pm

illy dilly wrote:
Dustdevil wrote:I would not count on any 22' truck getting anywhere near 12 mpg. My experience with a loaded 22' is closer to 8 mpg. This sounds like you are using Penske????


Damn Dustdevil, How'd ya know? The other company I was talking to was Ryder, but they couldn't give me 'real numbers' until I was ready to say yes or no.
Thanks for the advice! I wouldn't expect the 22' diesel to get near 12, probably(hopefully) average around 10mpg. And hopefully the 16' gas would average around 8mpg.
From what I've read before, diesel trucks will typically get better miles per gallon than gas.
My other thought was that with the 22' having more bed space and out gear loaded lower the truck would be less top heavy. Giving us better road stability through the winds of Wyoming. Does this make since or am I totally off my rocker?

Unless they have changed their policy, they do not rent their trucks for Burning Man. If they find out, or even suspect that might be where you are going, they will cancel your reservation.
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Postby Trishntek » Mon May 02, 2011 5:08 pm

I drive a Ford F550 all over SoCal. It runs the 6.0L 375HP Powerstroke V8 and I get 9MPG carrying 17,000 lbs. full-time.

The price of Diesel along the East Slope of the Sierra is already above $5. I kinda like having the extra gasoline for the genset. So that is the way I go for BM. Cheaper to deal with breakdowns while being easier to fix and get parts for in general.
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Postby Recoil » Tue May 03, 2011 12:58 pm

ryder cancels your reservation? yesh good to know lol
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Postby Elderberry » Tue May 03, 2011 1:36 pm

Recoil wrote:ryder cancels your reservation? yesh good to know lol

Don't know about Ryder, I thought Penske was mentioned. They are the company to whom I was referring.
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Postby illy dilly » Wed May 04, 2011 11:12 am

Thanks everybody for the advice!
Recoil, the best rate I found was through Penske.
Jkisha Do you figure the rental locations here in Denver do the same thing? We told them that me and my buddies had a gig booked in Reno for labor day weekend. Figured that way the millage would be about right and we wouldn't need to mention Bman. Plus, if something happened along I80 it would raise any red flags.

I'll give Budget another call and see if I can't get a better quote for the week.

On the discount for AAA, that reminds me that through my 'auto club' which is through my insurance company, I have all sorts of deals for different truck/car rental places. Most of the time they are for crap I don't need or use, so I forget that I have them. Thanks!

Trishntek wrote:The price of Diesel along the East Slope of the Sierra is already above $5. I kinda like having the extra gasoline for the genset. So that is the way I go for BM. Cheaper to deal with breakdowns while being easier to fix and get parts for in general.

Thats a very good point, about replacement parts and all that. But if renting from one of the super chains, shouldn't they stand behind their rental not breaking down? And then be quick to fix it if it does? or am I 'all wet behind the ears'
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Postby Token » Wed May 04, 2011 1:07 pm

FWIW, local construction rentals are usually much cheaper than the national rental companies. Bonus: they expect their trucks to get dirty.

Worth looking into.
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Postby illy dilly » Wed May 04, 2011 1:38 pm

Token wrote:FWIW, local construction rentals are usually much cheaper than the national rental companies. Bonus: they expect their trucks to get dirty.

Worth looking into.

That is worth looking into. And I might even be able to drop the company name to get a discount since we rent most of the lifts we use.
Do you figure they have interstate support though? If they are local and the truck breaks down somewhere along I80 I doubt they'd bring out another one like most of the national places.
But it is a great idea, and cleaning wouldn't be as big a pain in the arse.
Why don't ya stick your head in that hole and find out? ~piehole
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Postby Freesponge » Thu May 05, 2011 11:07 am

Diesels perform much better underload. I opted for a diesel bus simply because it gets better fuel economy. Even though it has a larger engine than a gas counterpart, its not working nearly as hard as say a 318 pulling the same load. Where a 318 or 360 will be redlining up the hills or overworking to maintain highwayspeed. My 40foot converted bus has an 8v71 detroit and gets 8mpg MINIMUM no matter how much crap is in it. On a good day it can see 10mpg. It produces much more torque at the lower end so It doens't have to work at hard. a 9.3L diesel can be more fuel efficient than a 5.2l or 5.9L gas when you are actually using it.

tl:dr
Go diesel if you can get it. If you are actually using the truck to its capacity then you will always save with diesel.
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Postby illy dilly » Thu May 05, 2011 11:26 am

Freesponge wrote:Go diesel if you can get it. If you are actually using the truck to its capacity then you will always save with diesel.

And if we're not using the truck to capacity?

Darn I thought starting a thread on this would clear things right up. Instead, it has just added more pros and cons to each truck.
..... I'm thining I'll see which ones I can get a lift gate on. Maybe that will help make the decision.

Thank you very one for the input! (and surprisingly sooo little snark)
Why don't ya stick your head in that hole and find out? ~piehole
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Postby Freesponge » Thu May 05, 2011 11:08 pm

If it can't fit in a minivan+utility trailer, next size up go with a diesel. Finding one will be tough though as many rental fleets only have gas pots for medium and light movers.
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