Why doesn't everyone run under tailgate spreaders in dump trucks?


Junior Member
After researching a lot I am trying to figure out why people just run v box spreaders instead of utg spreaders. It seems to be the best thing going right now. They cost less, not as much to,brake and they come on and off easier to. So why do people still chose v box spreaders. I fell like I'm missing something if you know what I mean. Thanks in advance:waving:


Senior Member
Green Bay
Most run Vboxes because they don't want the risk of someone hitting something with a raised box. Sometimes it takes multiple lifts of the box to get all the salt out which takes more time too. Not to mention on uneven lots you cant run with the box up partways because of the stability factor. However that's what I use on my 5 yarder.

Defcon 5

PlowSite Fanatic
I like Vboxes for the fact the materal comes out the center verses one side....I find it easier to do loading docks and parking spaces...I also do some Very Large Car holding lots and I find it easier and more efficient doing the isle ways with a V box.....payup

This is just my opinion...So, please take it as such.....


PlowSite.com Addict
^ and...we have found spreading to be more precise and waste is way cut down. We didn't even use the utgs with the limited salt supply this year..operation of vbox for new/inexperienced drivers is much more simple to learn.. The utg requires you to often adjust rpm to throw the material, also you have to "aim" the salt more. Above listed lifting the bed is also a moving part that could malfunction...hoses to rip off,..the "ease" of on/off of the UTG is great until something gets tweaked on the bed of the truck or salter....,the list goes on, don't get me wrong we have several utg spreaders but will probably never buy another.


Senior Member
We mainly have utg spreaders but do have 2 vboxs and I do love how they spread and how much more efficient they are especially when salting aisles in parking lots. They are a pain in the ass though when they break and you do have a full load of salt in them. And the only way to unload them is by hand versus dumping the salt out of the bed the truck. I would like to get another tailgate spreader where the spinner is in the middle and try that out.


PlowSite.com Addict
IL/WI border
Ever want to see a truck severely overloaded??
Our 1 ton at work was like that when I started. The guy driving it thought he could squeeze one more bucket on top of the heaping pile. As it drug it's a** down the road.....Later in life when we were replacing a transmission a year it was figured out. Now the truck is dead....with less than 50K on it.


Nova Scotia
pros: cheaper, less to go wrong on the salter itself, dump box holds a lot, less off season storage space.

cons: uneven flow to the salter. sometimes if you have a bit of wet salt ( and mine is dry and kept in a covered bunker) it wont slide back too easy and only 50% of the auger is getting salt.

I also have to stop my truck, shut engine off, engage pto (air shift, engine has to be stopped to engage pto on mine), start engine, dump box back for salt to slide, lower, resume salting, about 7-9 times per load. very annoying and time consuming.

Also there is my pto pump, air and oil lines alike that can rupture. just more to go wrong on an older truck like mine when you use the dump as part as the salting operation.

you have to keep a keen eye on how much salt is being spread. in the daytime you can hardly tell. the auger may not be getting fed and only a small amount of salt is actually getting spread. a teflon floor in the dump bed would help with salt flow, but next year im still going back to a v-box for my international. more consistent and quicker spreading. if I have salt left over, back into my salt bunker and spread it out in the building. dont take up too much more time than dumping it out, which is something else i couldnt do with my utg spreader. I had to drop my lower pan and climb in my truck and hand shovel the salt out every time because of the way the salter setup against the tailgate.

I just had a poor experience with my utg salter. works great for some, but not my truck or setup.

Defcon 5

PlowSite Fanatic
fireball;1795557 said:
plus, some people don't have the hydraulic systems to power the tailgate spreaders

Buyers makes an Electric undertailgate spreader......

Disclaimer....Anything Electric is a second class citizen to a Hydraulic Unit...


PlowSite.com Addict
I'm in the minority of most of you guys..I could never go back to a V box now that I have a full season on my UTG spreader. I have zero problems spreading salt from drivers side to passenger side and beyond..just depends on how you line up the center of the spinner with the outlet. typically MO DOT tells me that salt is basically spread 180 degrees from where it hits on the spinner..so if it hits at 12 o clock ( fairly close to the center ) on the spinner it will throw it from about 9 oclock to 3 oclock, My spinner is not all the way to the drivers side , I have it set partially to the passenger side..so my salt hits about 11 oclock & spreads from 8 oclock to about 2 or 3 oclock , so much so that I can see it in my passenger mirror. I have it this way to compensate for the offset of the spinner to the passenger side. If I had a V box I would need a loader to load the truck and take out the spreader. I had my vinyl sign guy save me 2 sheets of polycarbonate left over from some signs he replaced and I use them to line the bed in the winter..salt flows out no problem. I got into the habit of not driving with the bed up..I have to raise my bed about 4 times to empty about 8 tons out. IMO..if that amount of time is a deterent your not managing your time correctly. BTW I have central hydraulics


2000 Club Member
Always had salt stick in the box. The driver would finish and say all done no more salt is coming out. I would discover later that 3/4s of the load was stuck inside the box. Heated box would fix that. Then you have the factor raising the box all the time and having to hit the brakes. My truck is central hydro pump is driven off the front of the engine and you have to rev the engine to get the box to raise up. Used to do some condo's im sure they loved it when we would come in there middle of the nite roaring the truck and the air brakes exhausting the air.

Lots of pics on the Interweb of DOT trucks with truck under the bridge and box behind it.

Why not to run under or replacement tailgate spreaders video


Senior Member
Hazlet, NJ
We have always wanted to run them in the past so we bought one last year. For our HOAs (miles of roads) they were great with the large capacity that we could carry and luckily the HOAs we did were newer so there was no telephone poles, everything was direct burial so no obstructions to worry about. The trucks never stopped so you didn't have to worry about salt dumping out when you were stopped.

We ran them on our large commercial lots and personally I hated them and I would say almost all of our guys hated them as well. I felt the spread coverage area was not that good (maybe 1.5-2 lanes) and of course most of the coverage as off to the left (with spinner and chute adjustments we got it more centered but even still it was no where near like a Vbox pattern. This all meant more time salting each lot as you had to make your passes fairly close to each other which also meant a lot of over coverage and of course waste. We had lots of close calls with the bed being tilted up and we finally had one truck clip a overhang of a roof also. When the guys are tired and doing the last salt run of the night that bed being tilted up is just one more thing to worry about.

Personally for HOAs I would keep them ( as long as you don't have to worry about telephone pole wires) but for commercial lots big or small I would go with a big vbox anyday over an UTG. Some guys love them others don't. I feel they have their place ( roads) that's why DOTs use them but for lots they are just wasteful and not effecient

Mark Oomkes

PlowSite Fanatic
Grand Rapids, MI
I love my hydro UTG. (Hate my POS SaltDogg)

Spread pattern is fantastic, I especially love that it is off centered so I can throw it under parked cars. Using it on unoccupied parking lots is no different than a center mount.

Salt gets stuck in whatever type of spreader. And with a little practice, one can run it up just high enough to keep the spreader full and not have to worry about obstructions.

The biggest pluses to me:
More capacity on the same truck
Lower center of gravity
I always have full use of my dump boxes, whether I'm hauling salt, snow, brush, pallets of salt, etc, my dump box is able to be used completely.
Much easier to clean the bed out.

Having said that, I have both and they both have their place.


PlowSite Veteran
Swenson utg has been good to me ,going on 6 years old now. Replaced spinner motor. Otherwise looks like new.Spreads good, compact storage, can fill bed with 4-5tons with low center of gravity. I don't drive around with the bed up,I raise it fill it and lower and spread.Extra time to do this is offset by not having to go back to shop to reload.I use a camera to see whats going on in the bed and at the spinner. I hesitate to have anyone else use it though,I'm the owner so I'm extra carefull.Compared to some of the other things I operate this is quite simple. Not sure about other brands though(saltturd)

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