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Is Your Truck Ready For Winter?

Is Your Truck Ready For Winter?

For those in warmer climates, you don’t need to worry about prepping your truck for the winter months. But for those in cold-weather states, you know that prepping your truck for the winter road is not only crucial but literally life-saving.

So even if you’ve lived through many winters, consider the following tips to remind yourself how you can stay safe on the road and keep your truck in good condition this winter.

You should read: 9 Ways to Save Money on the Road

Make sure your truck bed is secure

Roads are slippery enough in winter. The last thing you want is dangerous debris flying around. In fact, two-thirds of the 200,000 vehicle crashes that occurred over the course of a four-year AAA study were caused by improperly secured truck cargo. Pickup truck tie downs can help keep your load secure.

Prepare an emergency kit

Emergencies happen when you least expect them, which is why it’s best to be prepared. Keep an emergency kit with a blanket, extra gloves, and other materials like a bag of abrasive material on hand (sand or cat litter can help create traction in the snow).

Switch over to snow tires

Not every car needs snow tires, but if you live in an area that’s known for getting more than an inch of snow it may be a good idea to give yourself some extra traction on the road.

Check your 4WD system

Four-wheel drive can come in handy during the winter months. If you have 4WD, make sure that it’s working correctly (especially if you don’t use it during the winter months). The system ought to engage and disengage easily.

Know what to do if you get stranded

If you get stranded somewhere you don’t know, don’t get out of your truck to walk. Hypothermia can hit fast when you’re outside. Instead, light two road flares on either side of your truck to let passing people know you require help. Keep the window open a crack and turn on the engine for 10 minutes each hour you’re waiting for help.

To get more information about us, follow us on Facebook and Instagram. Or call us right now for a road service on: repairtrucktrailer.com

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5 Common Preventative Maintenance Mistakes You May be Making with Your Fleet

5 Common Preventative Maintenance Mistakes You May be Making with Your Fleet

Continual maintenance of your fleet plays a vital role in ensuring optimal operating conditions for your equipment. While many fleet owners recognize the importance of maintenance, some aspects still get overlooked.

Putting off an oil change one day or forgetting to check the service light may not seem detrimental at the moment, but avoiding maintenance can lead to further damages in the long run and may even affect the uptime of your company.

MAINTENANCE ERRORS AND HOW TO AVOID THEM

Truck preventive maintenance mistakes are often not intentional but can hurt your fleet in more ways than one. Here’s what you need to know about common truck maintenance problems and how to avoid them.

NO STANDARDS FOR SCHEDULED MAINTENANCE PROGRAMS

Many fleet owners have set standard intervals for maintenance programs, but not everyone sticks to the schedule. Fleets used 24/7 require preventive maintenance, but when you put off a brake check or oil change, more damage will occur.

If your machines go too long without being checked, your repair costs can also increase and hurt your fleet in the long run. Neglecting routine maintenance can lead to severe problems. To avoid future issues, get your equipment inspected at scheduled times with no excuses.

LOOKING AT YOUR FLEET AS THE SAME EQUIPMENT

Fleets have several different pieces of machinery, ranging from bulldozers and forklifts to tractors and skid loaders. However, if you look your fleet thinking everything has the same problems, you’re doing it wrong. Different vehicles require different interval maintenance schedules. By treating and maintaining each piece of individual equipment, you can avoid this one common truck maintenance problem.

You should read: Tips to Give Good Use and Maintenance to Your Truck

NOT CAPTURING DATA FROM INSPECTIONS

Fleet owners often don’t take into account the information they get after inspection. When you don’t capture the right data, you miss out on valuable insights to problems across different makes and models in your fleet. You can use the data to determine which systems are failing can develop a game plan on how to address specific issues.

NOT TRAINING YOUR DRIVERS

Truck preventive maintenance problems can arise when your drivers don’t understand the difference between fault codes that need attention or don’t. When a warning light appears on their dash, a driver should take note and have the problem resolved. While some lights indicate a faulty sensor, workers should know when to take action and when to hold off on going to the maintenance shop. If they neglect the wrong lights, it can lead to serious damage.

LOOKING AT YOUR FLEET AS TOOLS INSTEAD OF ASSETS

Another truck maintenance mistake is seeing your entire fleet as a tool instead of an asset making you money. If you use equipment too hard and don’t maintain your trucks, they can fail, break down and cost you money. If you take care of your equipment, it will result in well-maintained trucks for increased production.

WHY IT’S IMPORTANT TO PREVENT ISSUES

The purpose of a scheduled maintenance program is to have your fleet experience zero breakdowns. Inspections now and no failures later mean the schedules pay for themselves. Mechanics can prioritize and determine what needs fixing right away. The goal is to get your fleet on a maintenance program to keep equipment operating safely and to avoid interruptions.

To get more information about us, follow us on Facebook and Instagram. Or call us right now for a road service on: repairtrucktrailer.com

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Top 10 Preventive Maintenance Tips for Trucks

Top 10 Preventive Maintenance Tips for Trucks

Preventative maintenance is the best way to keep your fleet of trucks running reliably and reduce the risk of breakdown. Here are the top ten preventative maintenance tips that we suggest all trucking businesses follow:

You may also be interested in the following article: 3 Reasons Why Fleet Maintenance Is Important

1. CHECK FLUID LEVELS:

Verifying your engine oil, coolant, transmission, brake, power steering and other underhood fluids only takes a few minutes and is an easy way to avoid major problems. If you see a drop in a fluid level between checks, it’s a good indication that you have a consumption or leak issue and can fix it before it becomes a major problem.

2. CHANGE FLUIDS:

The frequency for changing your fluids will depend on how many miles you drive, the weight of the loads you carry and the type of driving you do (highway, dusty roads, city traffic, etc.) Always follow the manufacturer’s suggestions for changing fluids. Trying to get extra life out of your fluids may save in the short term but cost you big in repairs and breakdowns later on.

3. VERIFY TIRE PRESSURES:

Any trucker will tell you that tire pressure is critical to check often on your large truck or tractor-trailer. Your tires are your contact with the road and you want them inflated properly to avoid uneven wear, maximize fuel economy and provide optimum traction, braking and load-carrying ability at all times.

4. CHECK YOUR TIRES:

Uneven tire wear can be related to tire pressure issues or difficulties with your alignment or suspension. Include a check of your tire condition and tread depth as part of your preventative maintenance plan. We all know how dangerous a tire blowout can be on the highway, so avoid the cost, delay, and danger of a blowout by inspecting your tires frequently.

5. INSPECT YOUR BRAKES:

When you’re carrying a full load, you want to be sure you can get stopped safely. Frequently check your brakes and replace them when they reach the minimum wear condition. Also look for even wear side to side and front to back. This can be a sign that your brake system isn’t balanced and requires repairs or adjustment to provide correct braking performance.

6. CHECK AIR FILTERS:

A clean air filter can go a long way toward reducing your fuel consumption and helping your engine run more smoothly. As a filter gets clogged, it can reduce the amount of air getting into your engine, reducing power and lowering fuel economy. Inspect and change your air filter at regular intervals and check more often if you often drive on dirty, dusty roads.

7. DO A BATTERY LOAD TEST AND ELECTRICAL SYSTEM VERIFICATION:

Long-distance driving and frequent stops and starts put your truck’s electrical system to the test. It is a good idea to add your battery, alternator and electrical system to your preventative maintenance list for a yearly check. If you operate in colder climates, a check before winter is the best way to avoid charging problems.

8. INSPECT YOUR GEARBOX AND CLUTCH:

The combination of high-torque engines and heavy loads mean your gearbox and clutch are worked hard every time you hit the road. A regular inspection of your gearbox and verification that it is functioning properly can help you catch issues as they arise. You will also want to ensure that your clutch isn’t slipping, as this can affect reliability and fuel economy.

9. CHECK OUT YOUR EXTERIOR LIGHTING:

A quick walk-around verification of your exterior lighting helps you catch burnt out bulbs and replace them before you hit the road. Avoid being pulled over and wasting time over a burnt bulb and check that all of your running, brake, signal, and hazard lights are working properly as part of your preventative maintenance.

10. SERVICE YOUR FIFTH WHEEL PLATFORM:

Problems with your fifth wheel platform can slow you down and even keep your truck off the road if you can’t securely hook up your trailer. On a regular basis, you should inspect your platform and grease/adjust as necessary. Clean any accumulated dirt from the platform mechanism and inspect for excessive wear or components that need to be replaced.

Every trucking company has a unique fleet of trucks and trailers and needs to adapt their preventative maintenance list to suit their situation. Including these ten tips in your list will help ensure your trucks run more reliably and are less susceptible to breakdown.

To get more information about us, follow us on Facebook and Instagram. Or call us right now for a road service on: repairtrucktrailer.com

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How Do I Know When It’s Time To Get A New Truck?

How Do I Know When It’s Time To Get A New Truck?

How do you know whether your truck needs some new tires or if it’s time to turn in your keys and get behind the wheel of a newer, safer vehicle?  If you’re unsure about the safety of your truck, here are a few signs it’s time to buy yourself a new vehicle for the holidays.  

You keep making repairs

One of the most common (and the most expensive) signs it’s time to buy yourself a new truck is that you keep having to shell out cash to get repairs. 

Of course, getting a new truck isn’t exactly cheap. But, if you’re spending hundreds, or thousands, of dollars on repairs every few months (or even every year), it may be an investment worth looking into.  

You may also be interested in the following article: 8 truck preventive maintenance tips

You don’t feel safe behind the wheel

When you strap your snow tires onto your truck, install some new windshield wipers, and make sure your truck has enough antifreeze in its system, you ought to feel safe and secure in your truck. 

Another sign it’s time to get a new truck is when that isn’t the case. There are a lot of things that can go wrong with a car and every vehicle will have its problems at some point during its run on the road.

Yet, if you know something is bound to go wrong, and you’re dreading dealing with it on the road, it’s time to give your truck a rest and invest in a safer model.  

Don’t forget the retractable truck anchors

Whether you get a new truck or you have your old one repaired to keep running for another season, it’s crucial to keep your load secure while you’re on the road this winter. According to an AAA study, up to 200,000 car accidents over a four-year period were caused by unsecured debris. 

Retractable truck anchors help to keep your load safe and secure whether you’re on the highway or back-country roads.

To get more information about us, follow us on Facebook and Instagram. Or call us right now for a road service on: repairtrucktrailer.com

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8 truck preventive maintenance tips

8 truck preventive maintenance tips

Truck preventive maintenance is vital to ensure transport safety. Many drivers still do not have this view that caring for the vehicle goes beyond the need to save money whenever possible. In fact, items such as safety, cost optimization, quality of work and even quality of life can be impacted if maintenance is neglected. So, take a look-out for the tips we’ve separated here:

Keep an eye on the filters

Changing the engine oil, fuel, and air filters must be carried out strictly according to the manufacturer’s recommendations. Special attention should be given to the air filter, as heavy use can reduce the life of the part. Thus, when it is very dark, looking dirty, it is important to replace it. Neglecting this care can damage parts and increase fuel consumption!

You should read: 3 Reasons Why Fleet Maintenance Is Important

Don’t forget the engine oil

And together with the oil filter it is worth checking the engine oil itself. It may be a basic warning, but the truth is that, in the rush of daily life, between one freight and another, many truckers skip this check. It is then up to the mechanic to confirm if there is a need for a change or if topping up the oil is enough.

Brake system is always a priority on a truck preventive maintenance

The braking system should be a reason for extra attention for any truck driver. It’s something you can’t fix: you always have to be up-to-date. So check that the linings or pads are not worn out. Grooves or imperfections in the surfaces are indicative of the need to change the part.

Keep tires within specifications

As trucks and heavy vehicles often carry large loads, the tendency is for wear to be even more accelerated than in passenger vehicles. So keep an eye out for the Tire Wear Indicator, a kind of rubber bump inside the tire’s larger grooves that indicates rubber wear.

Suspension is also essential in truck preventive maintenance

Springs, stops, trays and stabilizer bar are suspension system items that need to be checked to recognize any defects in advance on a truck preventive maintenance. At the same time, it is worth checking the lubrication of the central and support pins, as well as bushings, screws, clamps, hoses, and valves.

Be careful with the electrical system!

A tip for checking this system is to start with the battery, after all, it provides energy for all components. Check the water and also see if there is any oxidation on this item. Then evaluate the cables and terminals, looking there also for any signs of this same problem. Make sure the fittings are all snug, eliminating any issue due to bad contact.

So as not to get stuck, pay attention to the injection module

Finally, if the vehicle is equipped with electronic injection, the injection module software update must be performed according to the manufacturer’s recommendation. In parallel, evaluate all injection components – this is a care that makes a difference!

For all maintenance, use quality parts

Throughout this truck preventive maintenance process for the truck, it is essential to use quality parts. After all, just as important as taking these precautions in advance is choosing quality materials to ensure the safety and durability of the repair.

To get more information about us, follow us on Facebook and Instagram. Or call us right now for a road service on: repairtrucktrailer.com