Best Practices For Transporting Grain Bins

Moving a grain bin from one farm to another a few miles down the road is difficult enough, but transporting one on the highway or interstate is another issue entirely. Grain bins can be anywhere from 5 to 60 feet (1.5 to 18.3 meters) in diameter and reach heights of up to 100 ft (30.5 m), although there are a few units that eclipse even that figure. Weight is also an issue because even when they’re empty, large grain bins can weigh several tons—more if you include augers, motors, fans, and other equipment. There’s a lot to take into account if you plan to move one yourself.


Fortunately, there is an easier way. FR8Star is an online heavy haul transport platform that connects shippers with qualified transport companies with experience moving all manner of ag equipment and even buildings. However, while these heavy haulers can take much of the responsibility during the move, there are still a few things shippers need to keep in mind when planning to move a grain bin.

Choose The Right Transport Method

While it may be possible to separate the rings of a grain bin for transport, you may wish to move the structure all in one piece minus easily removable equipment that can add to the shipment’s overall weight, height, and width. Still, weight is not as significant an issue as are height and width when it comes to moving a grain bin, because those measurements will almost certainly exceed legal load limits.


It’s important to be aware that these limits vary by state. In Nebraska, for example, a load can be no wider than 8.5 ft (2.6 m), nor taller than 14.5 ft (4.4 m). With a few exceptions, most grain bins will fall well outside of that range. For a short grain bin, it might be possible to transport it on a traditional flatbed trailer or via a lowboy or gooseneck trailer with a drop deck to get past the height requirement.


Most grain bins, however, require a truck and trailer plus an overweight permit and possibly one or two escort vehicles due to their height, as there may be a risk of hitting powerlines, overpasses, and other over-the-road obstacles. With large-diameter bins, width is also a concern, as you don’t want to damage the unit by brushing against side obstacles. Safety is always key in heavy haul transport.

Prepare Your Grain Bin For Shipping

If the grain bin will not be dismantled for transport, then attention should be paid to ensuring that the structure is untethered from the base or the ground, and that there are no loose elements attached, such as metal panels that could fly off during transport. Make sure any doors or openings are properly secured, as well.


Loading is also an important consideration, because while it may be possible to use a forklift or loader to get the grain bin onto the trailer, larger units will require at least a cable system, and possibly a crane. Be sure to speak with your transport company ahead of time to work out those details and find out whether they can provide the required loading and unloading services.

Let FR8Star Handle The Rest

Once you’re ready for transport, it’s time to register with, where you simply enter all relevant information about the load, including accurate dimensions, pickup, and drop-off location, etc., and then submit your load. From there, you’ll receive free estimates in as little as 30 seconds. Next, you’ll receive firm, all-in bids. Compare transport companies from FR8Star’s extensive network with tier rankings, ratings, and reviews, and choose the one that best fits your needs.

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