According to a recent overview of operations in heavy-duty vehicle maintenance facilities conducted by Stertil-Koni, new technologies are increasingly being adopted to address harsh winter conditions that appear to be gaining in severity over the past decade.
Highways and roads across North America have been experiencing a marked increase in snow days, according to the lift manufacturer. These conditions expose large fleets to greater levels of dirt, salt, grime, and other corrosive elements that in turn adhere to the chassis and undercarriages of commercial vehicles.
For vehicle maintenance shops across North America, which typically operate on tight schedules already, the challenge has become to keep maintenance and servicing on time, even when the flow of grimy trucks and buses rolling in accelerates.
As these shops know well, dirty vehicles translate into added repair time and costs.
According to Jean DellAmore, president of Stertil-Koni USA, “Hazardous contaminants and road grime can adversely affect a vehicle's powertrain, potentially leading to overheating and corrosion. The situation becomes urgent when undercarriages are not cleaned frequently, causing the lifespan of engines and batteries to be cut short.”
The result: Additional costs for fleets.
“We have found that a broad range of commercial vehicle maintenance facilities – including municipalities, state agencies, corporate fleets, the U.S. Military, pupil transportation, and others – are increasingly embracing solutions to keep their vehicles out of the shop and on the road,” DellAmore added.
The Stertil-Koni SKYLIFT
One example is the Stertil-Koni SKYLIFT Wash Bay platform lift – which is a water-resistant, inground heavy-duty vehicle lifting system. It is ideally adapted for low-clearance vehicles, provides technicians with easy drive-on/drive-off capabilities and delivers complete access from all sides of the vehicle. It also is engineered to deliver a safe, efficient way to thoroughly clean the chassis and undercarriage of large commercial vehicles.
When it comes to installation, the lift’s modular design allows for flush mounted or surface mounted models, depending on the facility. And, unlike parallelogram lifts, these platform lifts have a true vertical rise, maximizing available floor space. The Wash Bay is engineered for use outside or in a steam-cleaning bay.
Notable Wash Bay features include:
- Special hot dip steel coating with galvanized steel platforms;
- Three-layer mono-pox coated lift supports;
- Water-resistant, lockable unit to protect its electronic controls; and
- Capacities of 62,400 pounds and 78,000 pounds with platform lengths from 23 feet up to 48 feet.
The SKYLIFT Wash Bay model comes standard with a mechanical locking system and automatic safeguards against overloading or uncontrolled descent.