ANSWER: Yes, you should clean the machines where and when possible before they are returned.

Particularly after wet weather, all mud etc., needs to be cleared off the machine as much as possible and removed from digger buckets and dumper skips. We realise that on some sites this can be a tall order. Obviously, in dry weather and on your cleaner sites you may well find that there is little or no cleaning required.

We trust that you will have noticed that our plant machinery is always supplied in a thoroughly clean condition. This is because we spend the time and effort preparing the machines for you before each hire.


However, if we have to spend extra time cleaning because they are returned in such a poor state we are very likely to pass on a charge. This can be anywhere between £30 – £150 depending on condition and extra time needed.

To give an example; an 8 tonne digger caked in mud takes far in excess of 3 hours to clean. That’s half a day’s pay, a delay in turnaround time, at least 3000 litres of water and something like 2 tonnes of earth to dispose of.

Something that will always attract a cleaning charge is a machine that is returned covered, or full of, a substance such as concrete, tarmac or manure, etc.

It is not our policy to add charges for fun or for profit, but simply to charge what is right and fair and only when necessary.

 Q: When is a hired machine off hire?

A: At the end of the agreed/pre-paid period surely? – Well, actually the answer is no.

 We’re sure that, as a customer of ours, you are well aware how hire periods work and how and when to terminate your hire but it might surprise you to know that this issue has caused a bit of a headache for some.

So we felt that it might be helpful to clarify our hire periods and, more importantly, our off-hire procedure.

If you’re new to hiring from Kelsey Plant you should find the following information helpful.

Firstly, to clarify the hire period:

You can hire our machines for whatever hire period you want, but the one that often seems to cause confusion seem to be a single week’s hire.

Sometimes customers mistakenly think that a hire which starts, for example, on a Tuesday should end on a Tuesday. This is incorrect.

Here are a couple of examples of a one week hire just to make it clear:

  1. a) A machine delivered with agreed hire start date as Monday 13th March would mean that the week’s hire is up by Sunday 19th
  2. b) A machine delivered with agreed hire start date as Tuesday 14th March would mean that the week’s hire is up by 5pm Monday 20th

This point is particularly important to appreciate if you don’t receive your machine until say, 10am on the 1st day of hire. Please don’t assume that you can continue to use it until 10am the day after your agreed hire period. We’re not inflexible or unreasonable, so talk to us if you need to use it a little longer or feel aggrieved that it was delivered later than you expected.

A hire period continues until terminated according to our off-hiring procedure.

Secondly, off hiring:

We will never automatically collect machines at the end of a predetermined hire period.

Official hire termination, even if you have agreed and paid for a set period, must be done by either telephone or email by 5pm on the day that you intend to terminate the hire. If you call or email the day following your intended termination date you are very likely to be charged for the continued hire.

We advise customers to take note of the off-hire reference number they are given over the telephone or particularly when emailing, always ask for confirmation of the off-hire reference number as emails sometimes fail to be received. We have an answering machine to take calls at weekends and out of hours.

The reason for this procedure is that in the past problems have arisen when:

  1. We have been told by some customers that they want a machine for a week and will definitely be finished with it at the end of that period only to find when we turned up with a lorry that the machine was still needed and in use. The result of this was further charges to the customers for wasted journeys.
  2. We have cross-hired in a machine to cover a last minute hire. The customer has assumed that we would automatically collect it, we’ve been unaware that the customer has made this assumption and the hire has continued. We’ve chased for the additional charges which has irritated the customer. The customer has then refused to pay the extra hire but we have been left to cover this with the other hire company.

These were just two scenarios which left customers irritated and/or out of pocket and damaged the business relationship!

To help improve our service we now make follow-up calls to our customers to ask whether they wish to end or continue with their hires.

Our off-hire procedure provides certainty for all concerned. If we are not available, please leave a message on our answerphone or with our answering service team and we’ll get back to you. Always ask for a confirmation off-hire reference number to prove that the hire has been officially terminated.

With all of the above said please rest assured that we will always be fair and flexible.

Happy hiring!