Seasonal maintenance is a must in the semi-truck industry, particularly when the snow melts and the heat of summer approaches. Having the proper tires, changing your winter oil out, and replacing the hoses and belts are just a few things you can do to prepare your fleet for the approaching season. Neglecting to attend to your fleet as the seasons change is not only a costly mistake, but also potentially harmful or deadly. As the temperatures climb, be sure to refer back to this 5-point list to keep your fleet operating smoothly, safely, and prepared for the changing weather.
Here are 5 semi-truck repair services offered by our technicians at Dieseltech to keep your fleet maintained this summer:
Because snow, ice, and slush can be tough on your tires, it’s important to exchange them with new tires when summer arrives. This is especially true if you’re still driving with winter tires as they’re less effective at dispersing heat and can over inflate or blowout with the increase in temperature. Not only that, but new summer tires come with more consistent air pressure as well as tread depth, making them safer for driving long distances in hot weather.
Additionally, checking tire pressure a couple times a month is a good habit to get into. Noting any fluctuations or changes can help ascertain whether or not adding nitrogen to the tires is a good idea. Since nitrogen helps tires maintain a consistent tire pressure, it’s important to add nitrogen if you notice this issue.
We understand not everyone has the time to examine their tires or perform a tire change. That’s why our team at Dieseltech offers a variety of semi-truck repair services that can take care of this for you.
2. Oil and Filter
The quality of your oil can worsen over time if not regularly changed. This is particularly true when driving in more extreme weather, be it sunny or snowy conditions. Although tempting, starting the summer without an oil change can incur costly damage that is made worse when mixed with summer highway dirt and grit.
Similarly, filters often get clogged through the winter with salt and other debris. In the summer, they get clogged with various dirt and particles. Because of this, most vehicle manufacturers recommend a filter change every 19 000 to 24 000km. However, the best way to know is to get your filter checked.
3. Hoses and Belts
Keeping on top of the hoses and belts that carry the fluids your semi-truck runs on is an often forgotten – but equally important – step. For most cases you can use the eye test and check for any tension, dirt buildup, misalignment, or leaks. That being said, the timing belts should ideally be replaced every 96 000 to 144 000km. Similarly, your V-belts should be replaced every 64 000 to 80 000km, to be safe. For reference, timing belts are the belts that turn your engine and V-belts are the belts that turn your vehicle’s accessories.
4. Wipers and Brake Pads
Ice and snow can destroy the delicate rubber blades that clean your windshield. Cracks, frays, and misalignment can make it difficult for your wipers to do their job in a summer storm. If your windshield wipers are leaving streaks, locking, or missing spots, it’s time to have them replaced.
Similarly, neglecting to change your brake pads can not only be costly, but deadly. We highly recommend a brake pad change every 48 000 to 56 000km.
If a battery dies, you and your business are stranded. Although an average car battery lasts 5 to 7 years, it doesn’t hurt to check on it before the temperatures peak. This is especially important to do before summer as one of the biggest drains on a car battery is heat. To keep your battery in good health, clean the top off regularly making sure no dirt or engine grease accumulates. Also be sure to wipe off any blue coloured corrosion, as this can also slow down battery function.
Follow these summer fleet maintenance tips to keep your semi autos running smooth and problem-free. If you have any questions, be sure to reach out to our team at Dieseltech.