The better you maintain a vehicle, the longer it will last. But truck maintenance impacts more than just the vehicle. - Photo/General Motors

The better you maintain a vehicle, the longer it will last. But truck maintenance impacts more than just the vehicle. 

Photo/General Motors

Why does truck maintenance matter? There is the obvious answer, the better you maintain a vehicle, the longer it will last. But truck maintenance impacts more than just the vehicle. 

Why you should properly maintain your fleet vehicles goes far beyond simple maintenance needs. Some seem obvious, but all bear repeating.

1. Reduced Costs

I’ll start with the most apparent reason why truck maintenance matters – it’s a cost saver. The old adage of “a stitch in time saves nine” is right on the money here. Skipping a tire inflation check could result in a tire blowout at best, an accident at worst.

Ensuring your vehicles are properly maintained before they hit the road will help reduce unnecessary repair expenses down the road. 

2. Reduced Downtime

A vehicle that is better maintained will not be as likely to break down and will have a better overall useful life. A truck in the shop isn’t getting any work done. Unless you have more vehicles than you regularly utilize (which is an entirely different editorial), then your driver likely isn’t getting any work done either. 

One driver can represent one-fifth of your fleet in a small business fleet of 5-25 vehicles. That’s a lot of work that isn’t being done. The larger the fleet, the higher the potential for downtime, which snowballs in final impact. 

3. Improved Safety

As noted in the first point, a properly maintained truck reduces the potential for an accident due to a mechanical issue.

Beyond tire maintenance, improperly maintained batteries could mean a vehicle won’t start for your remote service technician in New Hampshire when the snow just started to fall. Headlights that go out at night on a rural road could spell disaster for your drivers and the motoring public. Keep your drivers and the public safe by paying attention to maintenance

4. Improved Driver Retention 

Beyond safety concerns, a vehicle that doesn’t work when or how it’s supposed to is only going to frustrate drivers. Fleets are already struggling to find qualified drivers and retain them, don’t let the truck they drive be the reason they find another job.

Ensure that basic ergonomic needs are being met – a broken seat, busted grip handle, and slippery running board steps can lead to driver injury. 

5. Better Brand Image 

Today, brand image matters. With the ability to post a photo to social outlets in a matter of seconds, one trashy truck or accident can quickly spread to your customer base. 

Think about how you shop: You have the choice of a landscaper that has a busted truck dripping oil in your driveway, questionable equipment, and looks like it might break down before the next stop; or one that looks clean, undamaged, and ready to go. What are you going to choose? Don’t make that a decision your customers have to make. 

What are some of the other reasons why truck fleet maintenance matters? Did I hit the nail on the head or did I miss something? 

Email me and let’s chat! 
Lauren Fletcher

About the author
Lauren Fletcher

Lauren Fletcher

Executive Editor - Fleet, Trucking & Transportation

Lauren Fletcher is Executive Editor for the Fleet, Trucking & Transportation Group. She has covered the truck fleet industry since 2006. Her bright personality helps lead the team's content strategy and focuses on growth, education, and motivation.

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