Tips for Managing Medium-Duty Commercial Vehicles in Fall Season
Managing a fleet requires significant time and can be costly if you neglect maintenance. While upfront costs for comprehensive maintenance may seem high, they pale in comparison to the expenses incurred when multiple trucks start breaking down simultaneously.
Wear-and-tear parts have a limited lifespan. If you purchased your fleet simultaneously, components like brakes, water pumps, alternators, batteries, starters, spark plugs, and tires could fail around the same time. Mevert Automotive & Tire Center in Steeleville, IL, offers both truck and fleet maintenance services, including comprehensive vehicle inspections.
The Benefits of Regular Truck Maintenance
Scheduled maintenance for your medium-duty trucks offers numerous benefits:
- Increased vehicle longevity.
- Early identification of worn parts to prevent breakdowns.
- Enhanced trade-in or resale value for your vehicles.
- Time and cost savings by minimizing roadside breakdowns.
- Replacement of worn parts before they malfunction and cause additional damage
At Mevert Automotive & Tire Center, each service visit includes a thorough vehicle inspection, covering all visible components such as tires, brakes, belts, hoses, fluid leaks, suspension, and steering. We’ll advise you if any issues require immediate attention or if a repair is upcoming.
Medium-Duty Commercial Vehicle Maintenance
Early fall is the perfect time for fleet maintenance checks, even if you don’t have regularly scheduled maintenance. Preparing for the winter months is crucial to avoid being stranded in cold weather.
Regular and winter-specific maintenance includes:
Oil Change and Oil Filter Replacement
Keeping up with oil and filter changes is important on any vehicle, but doubly important with diesel trucks. Diesel burns dirtier than gas, which means more deposits in the oil. Over time, oil loses its lubricating properties due to debris buildup and the oil degrading from temperature changes.
Diesel also soaks up more condensation, especially during the winter. Changing the oil ensures you don’t have too much built-up condensation seeping into the oil.
In many cases, you don’t have to worry about the coolant in your truck for four to five years, which makes it easy to forget. Check your records, and if it’s been at least four years, make an appointment for fleet-wide coolant flushes at Mevert Automotive & Tire Care Center.
Tires and Alignment
Commercial trucks generally rack up the mileage a lot faster than individually owned trucks. That means you need tire maintenance more often, including rotating and balancing the tires. If you rotate the tires at every oil change, balance them every third oil change and align the wheels in the spring and fall, you’ll have covered tire maintenance. Of course, if you notice the tires are not balanced or the alignment is out before it’s time for your regular tire maintenance appointment, make an appointment at Mevert Automotive & Tire Center in Steeleville, IL, so we can check everything.
Check Belts and Hoses
We’ll check the belts and hoses each time you come in for maintenance, but you should have them checked again in the fall. If they look as though they might not make it through the winter, we’ll recommend changing them.
Whenever we remove the wheels to rotate the tires, we’ll check the brakes. Brake pads and shoes are parts that could cost you extra money if you don’t take care of them right away. They could cause damage to the rotors and calipers or the drums and wheel cylinders if they get too thin.
In addition to an oil filter, medium-duty commercial trucks have other filters. You should replace the fuel filter every two or three years, depending on the truck’s mileage or after getting bad gas or debris in the tank.
Additionally, newer trucks may have a cabin air filter behind the glovebox that needs to be replaced quite often.
The transmission also has a filter that requires changing every three to four years, depending on your driving habits.