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Summertime Truck Maintenance Tips

Posted on 6/23/2020

When we think of seasonal or weather-related truck maintenance, our minds immediately go to winter. After all, things like snow- and ice-covered roads and freezing temperatures are more apparent and the effects are more immediate. However, summer weather brings its own set of variables—like heat and just being generally busier—that can wreak havoc on your equipment.

Here are some problems drivers should watch out for as temperatures rise:

Tire Pressure
Tire pressure affects both the safety and the efficiency of a vehicle. Tires that are not properly inflated can cause wear quicker, decrease fuel economy and even explode in hotter conditions. Drivers should consistently inspect the tires of their truck and trailer (and don’t forget the spares!).

Fluid Levels and Cooling System Issues
Generally, fleets are busier in the summer, which results in fluids depleting or getting dirty faster. Checking these fluids consistently will increase the safety, uptime and overall life of your truck:

  • Engine oil
  • Brake fluid
  • Windshield wiper fluid
  • Transmission fluid
  • Coolant
Speaking of coolant, a surprisingly large percentage of downtime is caused by issues with a truck’s cooling system. Worse yet is almost all of these issues are completely preventable. Along with routine engine maintenance, it’s vital to inspect the radiator, including lines and hoses, for any cracks, corrosion or other issues. It’s also a good idea to routinely check the water pump and belts. Any leaks should be addressed right away.

Electrical Problems
Electrical components—such as wires, cables and battery—are extremely prone to corroding, fraying or being jogged loose. Ensuring these components are in good shape and fully connected will save a lot of headache. And don’t forget: Your battery is a critical piece in powering your truck’s air conditioning during those sweltering summer months.

Air Conditioning
While HVAC work must be performed by certified professionals, taking time to visually check your air conditioning system will help spot issues before they become critical. Be sure to check:

  • For any leaks
  • The condenser (no clogged or bent fins)
  • Wiring and connections
  • Refrigerant levels

Remember: A thorough pre- and post-trip inspection with careful attention to truck issues worsened by increased temperatures will go a long way in keeping your truck where it belongs: on the road.

Moreover, an Aim Preventative Maintenance plan is a smart, money-saving service that will help to reduce downtime and spot many of the issues mentioned above before they become too serious. Find out what’s included in an Aim PM agreement by emailing us at info@aimntls.com.

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