Are you in the market for a hand-painted concrete fountain or bird bath? We salute your great taste! One of the driving factors for our Q&A Series of blog posts is to go deep on topics important to our customers and store visitors.
In this post, we’re covering the basics of how freight delivery works for these items. Selecting the best style, size and color of a concrete fountain or bird bath for your space can require serious thought, so it should bring comfort knowing the shipping process is very straightforward!
Read on to see some of the more common questions we get asked and remember that unlike orders for everyday items shipped in boxes by carriers like UPS, FedEx, or USPS, concrete fountains and bird baths are delivered on a pallet and extensively packaged.
➤ Reminder: A standard pallet measures 48”x40” and a half-pallet measures 48”x20.” The height will vary depending on the contents, and certain items may ship on oversized pallets.
What is an “LTL” freight carrier?
A lift gate on the back of an LTL freight delivery truck. A pallet jack is used to place the shipment onto the lift gate, which then lowers the pallet to ground level.
If you’ve ordered oversized or heavy items for home delivery in the past, you may have noticed the acronym “LTL” when reading about the delivery method.
LTL stands for less-than-truckload, and simply refers to the fact that your order is just one shipment on a truck containing multiple deliveries for other customers in your geographic area.
The truck is equipped with a liftgate onto which the pallet is placed; the liftgate then lowers to ground level so the driver can move the pallet into the dropoff location using a pallet jack.
Concrete fountains and bird baths are almost always delivered via LTL freight. This is true for all concrete design studios that Fountainful represents on our site, including Massarelli’s Fountains, Giannini Garden Ornaments, and GIST Concrete Products. LTL freight carriers provide an economical way to transport items from the designer to your driveway.
➤ Pro Tip: Delivery Coordination. The freight company will likely call you a few days prior to arrival to coordinate a drop off time frame. IT’S IMPORTANT THAT YOU HAVE THIS CONVERSATION. Why? When these calls are missed and the delivery doesn't happen on its original date, the extended time in transit means the pallet will be stored and shuffled around more than normal. This increases the opportunity for mishandling that can lead to potential damage. It's best to make yourself available on the earliest drop-off date suggested by the carrier.
What is “Curbside” delivery?
Curbside delivery of 2 concrete bird baths by Massarelli's Fountains. In this case, a half-pallet was used. Because the driveway is located in the back of the property, the customer had the driver wheel the pallet to the foot of the walkway between the sidewalk and house.
Curbside delivery, often the standard option for an order arriving by LTL, means the driver will lower the pallet at the foot of your driveway or equivalent location at the front of the house, without crossing too far over the threshold of the property line.
Since you’ll be present for the drop off (see Pro Tip above), you generally have leeway in guiding the driver to a specific placement location for the pallet. This could of course be off to one side of the driveway so as not to block access, or onto a portion of the lawn.
What is “Threshold” delivery?
Threshold delivery is an upgrade to curbside, and means the delivery driver will “cross the threshold” of your property line and lower the pallet at the first structure. Usually this means a porch, garage, or potentially the side of the house (depending on if there’s a gate, the condition of the lawn, etc.)
Due to the nature of how shipments are contracted and scheduled, Threshold delivery almost always must be purchased at order placement. Adding it later in the process, if allowed by the carrier, will likely incur additional costs.
Is “shipping weight” the same as the product weight?
While following along with their tracking details for their fountain or bird bath shipment, some customers have inquired about the total weight figure being displayed on a shipping carrier’s tracking website.
The weight listed by the carrier is the total shipping weight and includes the weight of the pallet, crate, and packaging materials. This is not the weight of the item itself. Fountainful strives to list actual fountain and bird bath weights on our product pages to help you line up any necessary manpower and/or equipment for final placement.
Will my concrete fountain arrive assembled?
Concrete fountains (and any concrete bird bath listed as “pedestal” style”) are shipped with each component individually wrapped and packaged on the pallet. This method not only increases the safety of the pallet contents, but it makes relocating the pieces from curb to final location in your yard more manageable as the total item weight is divided between multiple components.
Prior to Delivery Day, you’ll want to line up any necessary assistance in transporting the fountain or bird bath pieces to their final location.
Complementary Curbside Delivery from Fountainful
The Uva 2-Tier Fountain by Giannini weighs close to 1,000 pounds, yet it's delivered on a single pallet in 5 individual components. This makes transport to its placement location more manageable.
On nearly all concrete fountains and bird baths available on our site, Fountainful covers the standard delivery from the design studio to a customer’s house within the Lower 48 U.S.
Our customers also receive updates throughout the build of their item, including production reminders, preparation and maintenance tips, and resources to help ensure enjoyment of their purchase for years to come.
Questions about shipping terms and timeframes? We’re here to help! Contact us.