Keep Your Fleet Running in Good Repair
When you run a trucking company, your main mandate is keeping your customers content. This means making sure orders arrive on time, and that means keeping your drivers productive and on the road. There’s no worse discovery than that your vehicles are all in bad shape. A dysfunctional fleet brings your whole operation to a screeching halt. Keep your business in motion by constantly monitoring the condition of your vehicles.
Maintain Your Engines
No sound is more comforting to an owner than the smooth purr of a well-tuned engine. Diesel engines for trucks require special care. As in any engine, regular oil changes per suggested guidelines greatly help maintain vehicle performance. Keep a timetable for oil changes in each of your vehicles, and similar charts for replacement of other engine components as recommended in the owner’s manual.
Fuel pumps are a more complex issue. A fuel pump can malfunction for various reasons, but however it happens, an engine can’t work without it. Your company mechanic should have the modern training to understand computer codes and check that the electric fuel pump controller is operating correctly.
Buy the Right Tires
Having the proper tires on your vehicles for the work they do plays a major part in increasing a truck’s lifespan and decreasing company costs. Considerations include whether your trucks will be mainly driven on city streets or highways. The heaviness of the vehicle at full capacity also matters, as the tires must be able to support the load without abnormal wear and tear.
Your goal as an owner is to find a tire that won’t need to be retreaded or replaced irregularly often, while at the same time staying as fuel-efficient as possible. You’ll have to do some homework to determine that happy medium.
Know When To Let Go
However hard you try to keep your trucks running, every machine eventually comes to the end of its life. Continuing to operate a vehicle that has outlived its usefulness creates a nuisance in the shop and a hazard on the road. It’s important to realize when a truck has reached the terminal stage and to scrap it ASAP. The clearest indication is if the cost of repairs is more than to purchase a new unit. Retiring a worn-out vehicle at the right time is doing a service to your drivers, your customers, and your own budget.
Proactively taking care of company trucks is a task no responsible fleet manager can shirk. Remember, it’s easier to fix minor issues as they arise than to deal with a real disaster.