Fleet maintenance is effective if it accounts for the scheduled and unscheduled aspects of fleet management. The more vehicles you have in your business, the more problems that can arise. You can rely on prevention to reduce long-term costs. However, that won’t solve every problem. There are a few considerations that should be taken seriously, and these tips will help to maintain your fleet is more effective in the near- and long-term.
1. Determine What Routine Maintenance Should Include
Whether vehicles are maintained in-house or at an outside service center, you should be aware of what to check for. All vehicles will need new engine oil, transmission fluid, and filters at some point. You should also remember to check the fuel system, cooling, system, drive shafts, and engine and transmission mounts. Brake service should never be ignored and be sure to refer to the truck’s owner’s manual for the best maintenance intervals.
As wear and tear affects each vehicle, it can take a toll on the wheels and tires exhaust system, steering, suspension, and undercarriage. Maintenance should also not be limited to major mechanical systems. You want to check the windshield wiper system, seatbelts, air conditioning, lighting, and auxiliary systems to be sure everything is in top shape.
2. Decide Who Handles Maintenance
Establish the infrastructure and procedures for routine maintenance before things start to go wrong. Will there be an in-house technical team or will vehicle maintenance be outsourced? If going with a vendor, provide them with a maintenance checklist to be sure your preventative maintenance expectations are met. Also, don’t forget about your drivers. Basic training can enable them to spot brake, steering, engine, and other problems before they get out of hand.
3. Optimize Your Record Keeping
Manual data entry can be ineffective even with the keenest eyes. You can save a lot of time with digital systems. Using a computer, you can track all vehicles in the fleet, quickly create reports, and keep tabs on driver performance. Going digital is not expensive and can save you in the long run thanks to efficiency improvements and the time it can save.
4. Consult with Maintenance Professionals
Either the pros you hire or ones you consult with can let you know what works. If you create a maintenance plan as part of a team effort, the strategies put into place can be more effective. It’s also easier to comply with federal and local regulations. This saves even more because compliance with inspections and safety guidelines reduces the potential cost of penalties, accidents, and liability down the road.
If your fleet is properly maintained, and doing so requires just a few considerations, your business can be successful. Taking advantage of fleet services is beneficial as well. You can depend on one such as Quarles Fleet Fueling so you can procure the best vehicles for your fleet and find the most effective fueling services. Combined with great maintenance, these can keep your operation running as smoothly as possible, when customers need it the most.