Rule #1 Grease Is Cheaper Than Steel
Service your truck according to your manufacturers recommended truck service schedule. For example, a heavy commercial truck can handle a grease job every 1900 to 3100 miles. This would be on the safe side and summer heat would be more beneficial to be on the lower side, you can go higher but risk higher truck maintenance costs. Routine grease alone will help reduce the frequency of a mobile truck repair.
Full services including oil filters and gas filters along with grease and oil change on your big rig truck should be done every 9300 to 12500 miles to be on the safe side. Again, some owners go higher than this even 15500 miles but grease is cheaper than steel, remember that.
Rule #2 Preventative Truck Maintenance
Having a good truck repair shop or several good shops you can trust in your entire route along with a driver who knows the maintenance schedule can make or break the return on investment of your long haul private truck fleet. Travel in several cities means you should know truck repair shops in those cities that also have a mobile truck service.
How do you build trust with a truck repair shop? One thing is being able to get to know the shop manager, owner, even some of the employees either in person, writing, or on the phone. You will know if you have the right chemistry in your communications, which is important.
Having someone who takes responsibility for your needs without over charging you could take a little time, committing to one truck shop. How you are dealt with on the phone speaks volumes for the quality of service you are getting. The best word anyone can tell you is your first name.
Rule #3 Inspect Your Truck
Your government truck inspection should be done honestly and on time to identify road worthiness by a licensed truck inspection service but daily routine inspections by the driver are equally important. Make sure your driver knows your system to report problems before they leave your operation on the side of the highway.
Rule #4 Tire Care
This one gets a title all on its own because your truck tires take a beating on the pavement and off road conditions they are subjected too. Nitrogen filled truck tires is good enough for jet aircraft tires and race car tires why would they not be good for your truck. Nitrogen molecules are larger than oxygen molecules and have much less tendency to leak.
Watch for cracks in the tires, bulges, under inflation, over inflation, and keep a good tire gauge in your truck at all times. Having a portable $40 air line for your semi that hooks up to the glad hands can pay for itself in just one flat tire on the side of the highway.
Rule #5 Carry Extra Fuses, Bulbs, Tools
One $15 fancy fuse switch can cost you a $400 tow just within town on a semi, and you don’t want to get stranded in your pick up truck either for some 50 cent fuse.
Bulbs can put a big truck out of service at scales especially if both head lights are out. Having 2 or 3 extra low beams and 1 or 2 extra high beams will solve this problem, make sure your driver knows how to install them too, even if you pay them $10 or $20 to install the bulb you will have less written warnings and less down time.
Basic tools are a great way to reduce road side maintenance costs for your truck. Even if you buy tools as you need them for your truck they will add up over time. If you don’t trust your driver with tools why are you letting such driver operate your truck? Don’t make sense.