Recommend a Hand Truck?

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tm3
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Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by tm3 »

I'm shopping for a hand truck for home use (moving boxes, crates, occasional furniture). The largest item that I would plan on attacking with it is one of my wife's planter pots but due to the diameter of the pot and what I'm seeing as far as the size of the "plates" on the hand trucks I'm not sure that will fit. I plan on moving things up and down stairs/steps.

Anyway, there are options for different types of handles (loop, straight, D shape), pneumatic vs non-pneumatic wheels, different wheel sizes up to 15", aluminum vs steel vs plastic construction, etc.

Any recommendations?
kabob
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by kabob »

Harbor Freight! Simple, Versatile, HardSolidRubberWheels - Super Handy...
https://www.harborfreight.com/material- ... 58297.html
Image
Just tuff to beat as a general homeowner utility handtruck!
Biggest con - Your neighbors will wanta borrow it a Lot!

as an Inflation note: I bought one in 2015 round $29, Wowsa - they're $69 Now!
Better find a HF 20% Discount coupon to buy one now...
tev9876
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by tev9876 »

There may not be an all-in-one solution.

If stairs are involved an appliance dolly is the way to go, maybe. They have straps to secure the load and rolling treads along the back to assist with stairs. They have wide plates but not very deep, so that may not work with a planter. The main wheels are rather small so not good for dirt, grass, etc. Also rather expensive, but you can rent them for $10/day from U-Haul. I did that recently when I purchased a washer and dryer online but they were not offering inside delivery.

For furniture you may be better off with a dolly. You can get those dirt cheap at Harbor Freight.

I also have a basic D-handle with pneumatic tires - probably from Harbor Freight. Works fine for moving stuff around the yard or garage. Not so good at going down stairs as my dented chest freezer shows. I also stumbled across a Milwaukee convertible and fold-able hand truck at Home Depot last week for $20 on clearance from $80. I grabbed it for use in my camper to help load and unload as I have a toy hauler and can just wheel things down the ramp. It is only rated for 150 pounds as a hand truck so not something for heavy use.

If your uses are occasional and you have a u-haul nearby I would probably go the rental route. https://www.uhaul.com/RentalItems/
Yooper
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by Yooper »

Mine is convertible (Milwaukee Hand Truck 49180) and I find that feature useful. Not a lot, but when I need that functionality I'm glad I have it.
Kagord
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by Kagord »

I prefer the Harbor Freight one with the bigger wheels with air in them, better for rough terrain. I did end up having to replace the wheels after moving a 350lb 75 gallon water heater with it, as they go lopsided after a long trek through back yard, but still was glad I purchased this one. The local tractor supply store had better wheels, so now it's really good.

https://www.harborfreight.com/material- ... 58291.html

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runninginvestor
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by runninginvestor »

We got this one a few years back. We are renters so we moved quite a bit. Having the ability to convert it into a platform really helps. Especially since we slowly replaced cardboard boxes with storage totes over the years.

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Milwaukee-8 ... /100071520
radiowave
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by radiowave »

runninginvestor wrote: Tue Jun 21, 2022 8:26 am We got this one a few years back. We are renters so we moved quite a bit. Having the ability to convert it into a platform really helps. Especially since we slowly replaced cardboard boxes with storage totes over the years.

https://www.homedepot.com/p/Milwaukee-8 ... /100071520
Have had this same model for many years (bought it when it was abt half that price) and it held up well. Agree that laying it flat with all 4 wheels on the ground is a very nice feature.
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FoolishJumper
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by FoolishJumper »

Costco sells this (I believe I bought on sale for around $90-100) and it has been a lifesaver through two moves. I can't recommend it strongly enough!
obgraham
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by obgraham »

Another vote for the red one at Horror Fright.
Sturdy and works well.
Pneumatic tires are a lot easier to roll over sills and edges, though mine regularly need airing up. So then you need a Compressor!
badger42
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by badger42 »

obgraham wrote: Tue Jun 21, 2022 9:59 am Another vote for the red one at Horror Fright.
Sturdy and works well.
Pneumatic tires are a lot easier to roll over sills and edges, though mine regularly need airing up. So then you need a Compressor!
A $20 bicycle pump works fine if you aren't looking for an excuse for a compressor.
twh
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by twh »

Get one like this...very versatile...
https://www.homedepot.com/p/Milwaukee-8 ... /100071520
andypanda
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by andypanda »

I've had a Harbor Freight HaulMaster for 5 years or so. It was $39 on sale back then. I have moved a 20 cu.ft. fridge and an electric range down a flight of outdoor concrete steps among other things, and stacks of solid concrete blocks 150' across the yard, and who knows what my friends have used it for.

www.harborfreight.com/material-handling ... 62775.html
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lthenderson
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by lthenderson »

tm3 wrote: Tue Jun 21, 2022 7:13 am Any recommendations?
I have an unbranded one that looks exactly like the harbor freight one shown upthread but with only some red paint remaining. It has held up well over the last 30+ years I've owned it. My one recommendation though would be to ditch the pneumatic tires immediately from whatever you buy and replace with solid rubber tires. After two decades of always having to air up one tire or another only after I loaded something onto the hand truck and discovered one or both tires were flat, I replaced them with the solid rubber ones and they have worked well the last decade. I wish I had done that back on day one.
random_walker_77
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by random_walker_77 »

I've got a bare bones d-handle w/ pneumatic tires. Got them from an importer similar to harbor-freight nearly 20 years ago. It's been one of the best $15 purchases ever. Useful for moving. Also if you strap a cardboard box to it, it's even suitable for moving heavy bags of soil around the yard. I routinely use it to move heavy pots in and out of the garage for the winter. Hand trucks do require a little bit of technique, especially for stairs, but I think that wheelbarrows are harder to master (don't laugh -- wheelbarrows get tricky when the load is heavy!)

Whichever one you get, I *highly* recommend getting straps. Something like this is "quick" to secure: https://www.harborfreight.com/automotiv ... 67386.html
but I think the ratcheting ones are good to have around for dealing with very heavy items.
https://www.harborfreight.com/400-lb-ca ... het+straps
The straps are what allows a handtruck's small "plate" to pick up large items like cabinets, chest freezers, or 8 ft sections of fence...

And yes, pneumatic tires need to be pumped up if it's been a while. The tires are small, so a bike pump will inflate them with just a few quick pumps. I'm glad for the larger/wider pneumatic tires (as compared to the solid tires) since these days, 90% of usage is around the yard.
GmanJeff
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by GmanJeff »

More expensive, but perhaps a musician's multi-format cart would work for you: https://www.musiciansfriend.com/accesso ... er-casters
obgraham
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by obgraham »

Pneumatic vs solid tires on a handtruck!
It cracks me up what we can argue about on this forum!
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queso
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by queso »

FoolishJumper wrote: Tue Jun 21, 2022 9:52 am Costco sells this (I believe I bought on sale for around $90-100) and it has been a lifesaver through two moves. I can't recommend it strongly enough!
Came here to say this.. the Cosco one at Costco (don't confuse the two..) has been great. I also like that the base plate/nose plate folds flat so you can store it pretty flat against a wall.
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Bogle7
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by Bogle7 »

Wait until your neighbor is moving away and leaves one out for the scavengers.
Zero$.
Works well.
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whodidntante
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by whodidntante »

obgraham wrote: Tue Jun 21, 2022 9:59 am Another vote for the red one at Horror Fright.
Sturdy and works well.
I don’t know this store. Is it next to Home Despot?
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snackdog
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by snackdog »

The CostCo one is the best. Can be a hand truck or a cart. Convertible.

Image

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Bungo
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by Bungo »

Kagord wrote: Tue Jun 21, 2022 8:11 am I prefer the Harbor Freight one with the bigger wheels with air in them, better for rough terrain. I did end up having to replace the wheels after moving a 350lb 75 gallon water heater with it, as they go lopsided after a long trek through back yard, but still was glad I purchased this one. The local tractor supply store had better wheels, so now it's really good.
I have the same model. The pneumatic tires work really well on stairs! I haven't tried moving anything really heavy yet, but I am soon going to have to haul a refrigerator out of my basement. Do you think overinflating the tires would have helped to avoid wrecking them with a heavy load?

Also considering whether I should just bite the bullet and buy an appliance hand truck, such as this one: https://www.harborfreight.com/600-lb-ca ... 58292.html - this would avoid having to rig up a way to strap the fridge to the cheaper model.
Topic Author
tm3
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by tm3 »

Great replies, thanks for all the info! I'm going to work through the provided links and check out all the options.
random_walker_77 wrote: Tue Jun 21, 2022 11:23 am The straps are what allows a handtruck's small "plate" to pick up large items like cabinets, chest freezers, or 8 ft sections of fence...

And yes, pneumatic tires need to be pumped up if it's been a while. The tires are small, so a bike pump will inflate them with just a few quick pumps. I'm glad for the larger/wider pneumatic tires (as compared to the solid tires) since these days, 90% of usage is around the yard.
OK the point about the straps makes sense. Clearly in addition to the hand truck I'm going to need some technique education! Due to the size of the planter that I want to move, I thought that I might need to get a hand truck that takes a "nose extension," making the bottom plate about 18-20" deep instead of 8" deep. The combo of hand truck and extension that I saw is about $250, so if I can do the same thing with a "regular" <$100 truck and some straps, great!

It sounds like the different handle types (D shape, P shape, vertical grip, etc.) is a non-issue.

I'm going to have to think some more about the wheels. It sounds like the pneumatic ones would be better going over rough surfaces like flagstones, steps, etc. But I have memories of a garden cart once upon a time that used pneumatics and when one of them would no longer hold air it had to be replaced. The replacement was almost as expensive as a new cart. So I guess that is the tradeoff.
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ClevrChico
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by ClevrChico »

I have one from Northern Tool that has been falling apart since I got it. I do not recommend cheaping out. I wish I would have bought a name brand used one.
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heartwood
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by heartwood »

I wouldn't buy anything w/o stair climbing wheels. I bought this one https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08CX ... =UTF8&th=1

You might like a wider/deeper platform, but a must if you have stairs or even a curb to climb.
cashmoney
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by cashmoney »

obgraham wrote: Tue Jun 21, 2022 6:47 pm Pneumatic vs solid tires on a handtruck!
It cracks me up what we can argue about on this forum!

Actually this a a very useful discussion.I wish I would have thought about this before i bought a hand truck with pneumatic tires.A tire would always be flat whenever I would have the occasion to use it and pumping up the tire not always convenient or possible.
tev9876
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by tev9876 »

If you are going to move a full size refrigerator up stairs get the proper appliance dolly with the properly rated strap to secure it and stair climbing treads, not wheels. That 264 pound rating on that dolly is for a static load. When you start yanking on it to overcome gravity and slam it into the next step it is going to snap like a toothpick.

Same with a 20" extension on a regular hand truck. That becomes a lever and puts much more force at the base than it was designed for. It also means much more backwards force required by you to tilt the load and it is going to be very unstable trying to move.

A heavy planter would be much safer to move on a four wheeled dolly/cart with enough strong backs (or a hoist) to move it the few inches from ground to dolly and back.

Hand trucks are great for square things like boxes that fit on the platform and are within a safe weight the operator can manage. For the other things discussed get the right tool for the job and can be rented for under $25/day. Otherwise be sure to include the medical costs of being crushed by a refrigerator or purchase of a new planter in your financial calculations.
Topic Author
tm3
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by tm3 »

tev9876 wrote: Wed Jun 22, 2022 12:53 pm If you are going to move a full size refrigerator up stairs get the proper appliance dolly with the properly rated strap to secure it and stair climbing treads, not wheels. That 264 pound rating on that dolly is for a static load. When you start yanking on it to overcome gravity and slam it into the next step it is going to snap like a toothpick.

Same with a 20" extension on a regular hand truck. That becomes a lever and puts much more force at the base than it was designed for. It also means much more backwards force required by you to tilt the load and it is going to be very unstable trying to move.

A heavy planter would be much safer to move on a four wheeled dolly/cart with enough strong backs (or a hoist) to move it the few inches from ground to dolly and back.

Hand trucks are great for square things like boxes that fit on the platform and are within a safe weight the operator can manage. For the other things discussed get the right tool for the job and can be rented for under $25/day. Otherwise be sure to include the medical costs of being crushed by a refrigerator or purchase of a new planter in your financial calculations.
Great thoughts, thank you! I would never tackle something like a refrigerator -- that is for the experts.

Good point about the extension. I had wondered the same thing about the leverage, despite the manufacturer stating a high weight limit even with the extension.

I'm going to investigate dollies and hoists. The obvious answers is a smaller, lighter planter but I have to consider marital accord.
stoaX
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by stoaX »

cashmoney wrote: Wed Jun 22, 2022 12:50 pm
obgraham wrote: Tue Jun 21, 2022 6:47 pm Pneumatic vs solid tires on a handtruck!
It cracks me up what we can argue about on this forum!

Actually this a a very useful discussion.I wish I would have thought about this before i bought a hand truck with pneumatic tires.A tire would always be flat whenever I would have the occasion to use it and pumping up the tire not always convenient or possible.
That has been my experience as well. Since I won't be moving anything as substantial as a refrigerator, I recently bought one with solid tires.

And I agree that it is funny that we're discussing this level of detail on a subject like this.
andypanda
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by andypanda »

If I ever need a serious appliance dolly/truck, I'll rent it.
U-Haul advertises $10 in town, $15 one-way.

www.uhaul.com/RentalItems
twh
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by twh »

Another good thing to have is the sub-$20 furniture dolly you can get at places like Home Depot. Very handy.
homebuyer6426
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by homebuyer6426 »

My Milwaukee hand truck is holding up well, except for the nuts that hold the wheels on, which are rusting from ambient humidity while it's been stored under a rain shelter.
Bungo
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Re: Recommend a Hand Truck?

Post by Bungo »

tev9876 wrote: Wed Jun 22, 2022 12:53 pm If you are going to move a full size refrigerator up stairs get the proper appliance dolly with the properly rated strap to secure it and stair climbing treads, not wheels. That 264 pound rating on that dolly is for a static load. When you start yanking on it to overcome gravity and slam it into the next step it is going to snap like a toothpick.
Good point, I didn't think to look at the weight rating until you mentioned it. Today I bought an appliance hand truck with a 600 lb rating from Harbor Freight. It was $120, which doesn't seem too out of line. The hand cranks that you use to tighten the belts seem a little flimsy compared with the ones I've rented from U-Haul in the past, but otherwise it seems fine. I used it to move some bulky patio furniture this afternoon - the belts were handy even though the weight wasn't that much.

https://www.harborfreight.com/600-lb-ca ... 58292.html
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