Prevent The Risks Of Sudden Breakdown With These 4 Truck Maintenance Tips

Prevent The Risks Of Sudden Breakdown With These 4 Truck Maintenance Tips

Imagine your fully laden truck being stopped on a congested roadway. What a nightmare scenario it would be! 

So, what can you do to avoid this? Simply said, you must follow the preventive maintenance procedure for your truck and usage. Sticking to a preventive maintenance routine is the best assurance you have to ensure your truck’s operational condition and best avoid breakdowns. An unexpected failure might cost you thousands of dollars in missed productivity, repair costs, and towing fees. However, these costs, (and stress) can greatly be reduced just by doing preventative maintenance!

We've highlighted five truck maintenance ideas that should be included in your preventive maintenance schedule.  

1. Check your tires before every trip

Tires are responsible for many highway breakdowns, which is why you should regularly check your tires before driving. But what should you look for while inspecting your tires?

Underinflated tires are more likely to wear unevenly and blow out, while overinflated tires create steering issues. The fuel efficiency of a vehicle is also affected by tire pressure. Always maintain proper tire pressure; see your owner's handbook for the recommended pressure. Also, remember that tires lose around one psi every month, and seasonal temperature swings of roughly 10 degrees can cause pressure loss as well. 

2. Check fluid levels

Before every trip, it’s a good idea to get in the habit of checking that your truck’s fluid levels are correct. If you check the fluids, your motor will not run out of radiator fluid (antifreeze coolant) or engine oil. Maintaining optimum coolant and engine oil levels is critical for the effective operation of your truck's diesel engine. Also, check the fuel level since you don't want your vehicle to get trapped on the highway with no fuel station within miles of its range.

3. Monitor all electrical systems 

Trucks use a significant amount of energy. And from whence do they get it? Their alternator and batteries! The truck's performance will be slowed by an inadequate electrical system, leading to failure and high maintenance expenses. Here are some things to keep an eye on:

Make sure that the battery is fully charged and has the capacity suggested by the manufacturer. A faulty battery might cause the engine to shut down, leaving you stranded on the highway. Clean, undamaged, and corrosion-free cables and wires are essential. Short circuits, broken lighting, and severe system failures may all be avoided with proper cable maintenance.

4. Examine the brakes

Because of the enormous friction, pressure, and heat received by the brakes, they are prone to significant damage and are one of the leading causes of truck failures. If you hear the brakes screech or feel them vibrate as you stop the vehicle, it's a sign that they need to be serviced.

How to proceed with repairs? 

While some downtime is unavoidable, there are numerous situations where it may be minimized or even avoided entirely. Here are some helpful hints from diesel truck repair experts about minimizing downtime for service:  

- Maintain a preventative maintenance routine

There's a lot more to maintaining a heavy-duty diesel engine than just changing the oil. Preventative maintenance for your vehicles should be conducted regularly to spot potential concerns before they cause downtime. A comprehensive PM inspection may detect filthy air filters, under-inflated tires, sliding clutches, and a variety of other issues that, if left unaddressed, might lead to a breakdown.

- Make repairs during scheduled downtime

Routine repairs, including fluid changes, front-end maintenance, brake service, broken windshield wipers, and more, may sometimes be booked during your scheduled downtime. 

- Pay attention to your drivers

A driver often brings a maintenance problem to the fleet manager's attention. The fleet management will postpone repairs to avoid downtime or lose track of it on their to-do list. When a driver informs you of a problem with their truck, no matter how minor, make the necessary arrangements to bring the vehicle into the shop at a reasonable time. Otherwise, if or when the problem develops, you risk dealing with many downtimes.

- Don't wait for a breakdown 

It's easy to get into the "repair by breakdown" mindset, particularly if you don't have many vehicle problems. However, to minimize downtime, you should do preventive maintenance and minor repairs on your fleet. To put it another way, your vehicle maintenance program should be proactive and consistent. Waiting until you're in a jam makes it more challenging to prevent downtime.

Final words 

Preventive maintenance may go a long way in keeping your vehicle in good shape. The nice part about preventive care is that many potential issues can be spotted in pre-trip inspections, which helps you remain flexible regarding vehicle maintenance. Whether you own just one truck or maintain a fleet of trucks, this is something that you will need to be mindful of. 

Other Posts

The Role Of Heavy-Duty Truck Wraps And Decals In Fleet Management

The Role Of Heavy-Duty Truck Wraps And Decals In Fleet Management

Consider wrapping or decaling your fleet's heavy-duty trucks. It's a smart move that boosts brand awareness, stands out in the industry, and protects vehicles.
Read more
Heavy-Duty Truck Repair Shop

Choosing The Best Heavy-Duty Truck Repair Shop - 5 Things To Consider

Looking for the best heavy-duty truck maintenance company? Learn the key factors to consider when selecting a repair service that understands the importance of a partnership. Ensure your fleet's success by choosing a reliable service provider committed to helping you achieve your operational goals. Read on to discover five essential considerations for choosing the right truck repair business.
Read more
Heavy-Duty Truck Axle Repair

5 Indicators Your Heavy-Duty Truck Needs Axle Repair Immediately

Even though axles are designed to be durable, an overloaded heavy-duty truck may sometimes cause an axle to fracture or shatter. Other frequent reasons for axle issues are faulty carrier bearings or terrible potholes. There are five signs that the axles on your heavy-duty truck need to be repaired. If you see one of the following signs of axle damage, it's time to have a professional inspect your heavy-duty truck.
Read more