Hand Truck vs Dolly: What’s the Difference?

Manual handling of heavy equipment is the most common cause of injury in the workplace. You can protect your employees and your business by providing equipment that makes moving heavy loads easier and more efficient.

But how do you decide between a hand truck vs dolly? Keep reading to learn about each one and to find out which is right for your company.

worker using a dolly to carry boxes

A Hand Truck

While often miscalled dollies, hand trucks are quite different. Hand trucks have large wheels and stand upright. They are L shaped, with the back of the truck (which the item lays on) reaching vertically. On hand trucks, the bottom platform (where the item being carried sits) is smaller.

To use a hand truck, you slide the bottom platform underneath the item you are moving. Then, you tilt the truck toward you so that it balances on its two wheels, which are located at the back.

Sometimes hand trucks come with extra wheels that kick out to make it a four-wheel carrier. They can also come with attachments for climbing stairs or to lay the hand truck down horizontally.

Benefits

When considering a hand truck vs dolly, there is much to consider. The extras that often come with hand trucks are a plus. In addition, the vertical design allows you to easily lift and move tall options such as refrigerators and wardrobes.

Hand trucks are also nice for small items, as you can easily stack them and carry multiple items at a time.

A Dolly

A dolly is defined as a platform with four wheels and two axles. There are multiple designs and sizes of dollies. From dollies designed to carry your luggage at a hotel or airport to dollies that tow vehicles, there is a type for every need.

The one downside to dollies is that they are off the ground. Unlike a hand truck, which can slide underneath the item while on the ground, you have to lift whatever you want to transport onto a dolly. Click to learn how to use a dolly properly.

Benefits

Dollies can come in very large sizes, which can make them more beneficial when comparing a hand truck to a dolly. Hand trucks are not made to be very large. As mentioned, you can tow things like vehicles, boats, and more with a dolly.

The four wheels of dollies also make them easy to maneuver and keeps them balanced. You won’t have to worry about your item falling off, especially with dollies that have side rails.

Hand Truck vs Dolly—Which Is Right for You?

As you can see, both hand trucks and dollies have their advantages. Deciding between purchasing a hand truck or a dolly will be determined by your company’s needs. When choosing, you’ll want to consider the size, shape, and weight of the materials you’re moving.

Not sure which equipment will best suit your needs? Check out our product catalog or contact us today. We carry a full line of high-quality machinery skates for moving heavy equipment.