Delivery Slots Fill Up Quick as the Trucking Shortage Continues

Even before the pandemic hit, the trucking industry was in need of tens of thousands of drivers. Shutdowns and new regulations/precautions have disrupted supply chains, while social distancing and limited hours further inconvenience newly trained truck drivers seeking to obtain a license.

For years, there has been a growing shortage of qualified CDL-A drivers, and it has only gotten worse. According to the American Trucking Association, there’s a shortage of 60,000 truck drivers nationwide with a predicted increase of over 100,000 by 2021.

Why is this shortage happening? Baby Boomer drivers are retiring due to age, stricter DOT medical certification processes, and frustration with newly required Electronic Log Devices (ELDs) which have created tighter hours of service regulations. This technology – which is designed to enforce limits on driving time without breaks – has not only pushed many seasoned drivers to quit, but also reduces the number of trucks available overall.

Additionally, millennials are far less enthused than previous generations to join the trucking force due to the arduous duty of long cross-country trips, away for days and weeks at a time. Furthermore, the men and women completing tractor trailer schools these days are not always accepted by insurance companies, which often require at least three years of driving experience.

What does all of this mean for wood pellet stove owners? Much like so many others, this industry has suffered ongoing trucking shortage effects such as price fluctuations, inconsistent supply transportation and difficulty maintaining a full staff of qualified home delivery drivers.

Our team is working tirelessly to schedule safe, convenient home deliveries for our customers across the Northeast. If you have not yet secured your home’s wood pellet fuel for the upcoming heating season, place your order online or call 1-800-PELLETS as soon as possible to get yourself into the delivery queue! 

 

Guide: Wood Pellet Home Delivery by Woodpellets.com

Woodpellets.com Home Delivery of Wood Pellets by the TonThe forklift needs a lot of clearance. It’s actually over 8 feet wide, and the highest point is also 8 feet tall. It’s mounted on the back of the truck, which parks in the road. The driver lowers it down to the ground, uses it to remove your fuel from the truck, and then drives it up your driveway to place the pallets where you need them.

Note: Due to the heavy weight of the load and the forklift itself, it can’t be driven across any leach fields, sprinkler lines, or soft lawn. Keep this in mind when you’re deciding where to have your pallets of fuel placed!

The forklift’s path must be clear. Forgetting to move cars out of the way is a common mistake, and one that can really make for a more difficult delivery. Keeping a clear path (at least 8 feet wide, including any turns) for the driver is important, not only for saving time – but for protecting your belongings. Our drivers are very careful and skilled, but as we mentioned before, the forklift is pretty bulky and difficult to maneuver in tight spaces.

Note: Moving cars, toys, and equipment out of the way is important – but so is getting kids and pets out of the area! Keeping children and any pets inside during delivery is very helpful to the driver. There are already many variables to think about during a delivery, so avoiding the addition of small running bodies to the mix is crucial.

We love details, details, details! Does your road have heavy construction going on? Is your driveway hard to find? Does your address not come up on GPS? If our drivers know ahead of time what to be prepared for, we can better serve you. It’s better to be up front about any tricky circumstances especially, so the delivery team can do all that’s possible to find a solution ahead of time.

Communication is key! Our delivery team will send you an email, text your phone, and/or call you (whichever way you’ve indicated you prefer) to confirm your delivery. Also, sometimes we reach out ahead of time to confirm your delivery instructions or to get clarification on something. If you get a message requesting a call or email back from our team, try to get back to us as soon as possible. Depending on the information we require from you, we probably won’t be able to schedule a delivery if there are unanswered questions pending.

Woodpellets.comSometimes it’s helpful to leave a sign or mark where you want the pallets. Many driveway deliveries have instructions like this: “Please place pallets by the garage door”. Does this mean the customer wants the pallets near the entry door, so he or she can bring the bags inside to hand-stack? Or should the pallet be placed in front of the bay door? Which one if there are multiple? If you want a much more specific location for placement, mark the space with a sign, or an overturned trashcan, and let us know your indicator. Our driver will do everything possible to safely deliver your pallets where you want them.

You do not need to be home to accept a delivery. If your schedule isn’t meshing with ours, it’s totally fine. As long as your instructions are clear and you let us know exactly where you’d like your fuel our driver can handle it in most situations without your physical presence. We also have your contact information in case something comes up, of course.

Note: Garage deliveries often involve the customer being at home, to open the door to allow the pallet jack to place the fuel inside. However, many customers are fine with leaving the garage door open if they can’t be home at the time of delivery. It’s all about whatever you are comfortable with! 

Did you opt for a garage placement? Are we able to move around in the garage? Now that you’ve cleared your driveway for our equipment, have you cleared a path in the garage for the pallet jack? This is another overlooked step at times, unfortunately. The pallet jack, while smaller than the forklift, is still a heavy-duty piece of equipment. Make sure all the stuff that tends to accumulate in the garage is cleared out of the path of your fuel’s final destination. Also be sure to take note of how large your pallets are to be sure your space is ready.

We are always happy to answer any questions you might have. Please give us a call at 1-800-PELLETS to speak to a pellet expert, or visit Woodpellets.com for more information. 

Grilling Season is Here: Steak Touch Test

Grilling season is here! Did you know you can check your steak’s progress without cutting into it or using a…

Posted by Wood Pellets on Friday, May 29, 2020

 

Grilling season is here!

Did you know you can check your steak’s progress without cutting into it or using a thermometer? Simply press your index finger into the base of your thumb and make these hand gestures to compare how the steak feels.

Even if you don’t have a wood pellet grill, you can use a few different techniques to get that smoky BBQ infusion for your food.

Shipping is free on 20 pound bags of Bear Mountain BBQ Grilling Pellets!

 

Custom Wood Pellet Fuel Covers with Velcro Access Now Available!

For years we’ve been reminding our customers that it’s safe to store your wood pellets outside, as long as you secure a sturdy tarp over them. We’ve heard concerns about sun damage, tarp shape, edges flying up, difficulty with accessing pellets, among others.

Read >> How to Store Your Wood Pellets Outside

We have heard your concerns and we have designed a solution available exclusively from Woodpellets.com! These sturdy tarps are made to fit perfectly over your wood pellets as they’re delivered on pallets. Plus, one side has a very convenient strip of velcro to make opening up and closing a breeze.

Sturdy Pallet Covers with Velcro Access by Woodpellets.comAvailable in a 50” height for 1-ton skids and a 72” height for a 1.5 ton skid, each protective tarp is 49 inches in length and width, with a white outside and black underside. The 8×8 woven material is rated for 1 year of UV protection to help with protection from the elements.

These brand new covers were created with our customers’ needs in mind – so we feel confident they’ll help you better protect your precious Woodpellets.com fuel.

Order your wood pellet tarp online or call 1-800-735-5387 to speak to a representative!

How to Safely Re-Stack Wood Pellet Bags

Woodpellets.com Customer Re-Stacking Techniques

Many folks don’t have the space to keep their wood pellet fuel stacked on pallets as delivered. Although storing wood pellets outside is possible and very common, we’ve noticed our customers often have our delivery drivers place the skids near an entrance to the house for re-stacking inside.

Read >> 
How to Keep Wood Pellets Stored Safely Outside 

Read >> Customer Tip: How to Easily Move Pellet Bags into the Basement 

In order to demonstrate a bag stacking method within a small space, we placed 3 whole tons of wood pellets (150 bags) in a 6 foot wide space using a very simple hand-stacking technique, described below.
Read more

Woodpellets.com Service in Maine via D&J Home & Hearth

 

Wood Pellet Delivery in Maine

In the early 1970’s, Romeo Jr. and Maggie Pimpare moved to Sanford Maine with their three young children and started a car repair business. The business eventually expanded into manufacturing custom made portable buildings, and when wood pellet stoves were added to the shop for sale in 1997, D&J Home & Hearth was born.

In 2015 Wayne, Wendy & Randy bought the thriving business from their parents. Today the company is a leading distributer of Harman, Ecochoice, Vermont Casting, DutchWest, Majestic pellet, wood, gas stoves, inserts and fireplaces.

In order to offer expert wood pellet customer service along with the convenience of ordering premium wood pellets online, D&J has recently partnered with Woodpellets.com.

Now any wood pellet stove owner within D&J Home & Hearth’s pellet delivery service area can now place an order through Woodpellets.com online or by calling 1-800-PELLETS.

Woodpellets.com is excited to partner with a family-run business that values customer service as much as we do!

Woodpellets.com Now Accepting Northwest Wood Pellet Orders via Ziggy’s Home Improvement

It was 1965 when Vern Ziegler established the Ziegler Lumber Company after building hundreds of homes in the Inland Northwest as a general contractor.

Using his vast experience in residential construction, Mr. Ziegler pioneered the do-it-yourself concept with his first store in Spokane Washington. Having been called “Ziggy” much of his life, Vern’s company soon became well known as “Ziggy’s.”

His goal at that time was the same as it is today – to offer the customer the highest quality merchandise at contractor prices, along with excellent service and good advice for the homeowner to do his own projects.

In order to offer expert wood pellet customer service along with the convenience of ordering premium wood pellets online, Ziggy’s recently partnered with Woodpellets.com. Now any wood pellet stove owner within Ziggy’s pellet delivery service area can now place an order through Woodpellets.com online or by calling 1-800-PELLETS.

We’re proud to be working with Ziggy’s and are thrilled to expand our services to the Northwest!

Woodpellets.com’s Newest Driver: A Woman with a Work History to Admire

Woodpellets.com

As a company focused on customer service, home delivery is a significant piece of the Woodpellets.com experience. After a pellet stove owner discusses fuel options with us, or clicks through the website to place an order, delivery is the next big step in the process. Our drivers are responsible for loading up the customer’s fuel, safely transporting it to the home and following the customer’s placement instructions.

Liz was brought onboard this year by JPO Trucking, a small business outside of Poughkeepsie New York and one of our trusted contractors. When asked if we could highlight her in a blog due to her position not typically being held by women, she agreed and said, “Guess I have a history of being employed in male dominated jobs. I am a retired police sergeant.”

Chatting as she walked her rescue dog Daisy after a day’s work, Liz explained she always had an interest in the trucking industry. She knew it was “either that or become a cop”, since she grew up with an NYPD homocide detective father. Instead of choosing between the two paths, she ended up with both.

After nearly 5 years in corrections and 22 years in the police force, 18 of which were as a Sergeant, Liz retired last year. But during that time, she went to school to obtain her CDL knowing she would seek a trucking job following her retirement.

During the years serving her community, she dealt with serious, depressing situations and crimes. “My old job was everyone’s problems all day long. People don’t call the police to help cut a birthday cake.” Talking about the difference between that role and her current trucking job, she says “This is none of that negativity. Now I can worry about myself!”

According to the American Trucking Association, the number of women in the industry has only increased slightly in the last 15 years, from 4.5 to roughly 6 percent. Liz was surprised to hear just how low the numbers are for females in this industry, and said she wishes more women would sign on.

As for her, she doesn’t plan on fully retiring anytime soon. We are lucky to have Liz and our whole network of drivers out there representing Woodpellets.com.

 

 

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