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November 2015, - WebXclusive

Distributor Takes Action on Improving Parts Buying Experience

Photo: Denise Rondini

By Denise Rondini

Action Truck Parts recently moved to a more visual customer experience offering more of a retail approach to parts purchasing.

Tags: Retail Sales, Aftermarket Parts, Customer Satisfaction, Distributors, Parts and Service

October 2015, - Editorial

Commentary: Leveling the Service Playing Field

Denise Rondini

By Denise Rondini

Fleets and independent repair garages will soon have access to service information for model year 2010 and later trucks and buses over 10,000 pounds sold in the United States and Canada.

Tags: Vehicle Diagnostics, Engines, Right to Repair, Parts and Service

October 2015, - WebXclusive

Trailer Component Supplier Optimistic for the Future

By Denise Rondini

The last few years have been good for suppliers and as new technologies have driven up the value of components.

Tags: Trailers, Supplier, ACT Research, Hendrickson

September 2015, - Editorial

Commentary: Replacement Brake Friction Can Affect Stopping Distance

Denise Rondini

By Denise Rondini

There is no requirement that aftermarket linings meet reduced-stopping-distance requirements.

Tags: Aftermarket Parts, Bendix, Brakes

August 2015, - WebXclusive

SmartWay List Swells with Cheap Chinese Tires

Will an increasing number of cheap imported tires cause a rise in the amount of roadside tire debris? Photo by Jim Park.

By Jim Park

A massive influx of Chinese tires, some costing $100 or less, has flooded the U.S. EPA's list of SmartWay verified tire in the past year. What does this mean for tire retailers and retreaders, fleets and even the enforcement community?

Tags: China, EPA SmartWay, Tires

August 2015, - Editorial

Commentary: New Life For Old Parts

Denise Rondini

By Denise Rondini

For fleets that are trying to extend the life of their vehicles, recycled or reconditioned parts might be the answer.

Tags: Aftermarket Parts, Aftermarket, Volvo Group

July 2015, - Editorial

Confusion in the Aftermarket

Denise Rondini, Aftermarket Editor.

By Denise Rondini

Counterfeit. White box. Gray market. Genuine. Aftermarket. Will fit. Private label. Knock-off. All those terms are used to describe truck parts. That explains why there is confusion and uncertainty in the market.

Tags: Aftermarket Parts, Parts, Counterfeit Goods

July 2015, - Cover Story

How Counterfeiting Affects the Aftermarket

Counterfeiting, gray market parts and intellectual property violations can make it hard to know what part is actually in the box you just bought.

By Denise Rondini

Counterfeiting, gray market parts and intellectual property violations can make it hard to know what part is actually in the box you just bought.

Tags: Aftermarket Parts, Counterfeit Goods

June 2015, - Editorial

Commentary: Tracking Truck Health

Denise Rondini, Aftermarket Editor.

By Denise Rondini

Several truck makers have been promoting uptime through remote diagnostics for a while now. But at this year’s MATS, nearly every OEM talked about their efforts to provide fleets with insight into their vehicle’s health in an effort to increase vehicle uptime.

Tags: Vehicle Safety, Vehicle Diagnostics, Downtime, MATS

May 2015, - Editorial

Commentary: We Can Do Better on Brakes

Denise Rondini, Aftermarket Editor.

By Denise Rondini

We've long been aware of the inadequacies of air disc brake training, particularly in the United States.

Tags: Brakes, Brake Safety Week, CVSA, AIr Disc Brakes

April 2015, - Editorial

Commentary: It Comes Down to Quality

Denise Rondini, Aftermarket Editor.

By Denise Rondini

While it seems like price dominates conversations about both parts purchasing and service provider selection, the reality is that it often is not the most important factor.

Tags: Vehicle Quality, Aftermarket Parts, Minimizer

March 2015, - Feature

Explaining the World of Remanufactured Parts

Assemblies are completely torn down and measured and qualified to see if they can be reused. Those that cannot be reused are replaced.

By Denise Rondini

Remanufactured parts are a $7 billion business at retail, which has been growing slowly over the past 30 years but even with this growth, there are some misconceptions about what remanufacturing means and about the quality of reman parts.

Tags: Aftermarket, Remanufacturing, Parts and Service

March 2015, - Editorial

Commentary: The More Things Change

Denise Rondini, Aftermarket Editor.

By Denise Rondini

2014 and 2015 might be the sweet spot for aftermarket parts and service, in large part due to the average age of the truck population.

Tags: Aftermarket Parts, HDAD, Parts and Service

February 2015, - Editorial

Commentary: It's All About the Brakes

Denise Rondini, Aftermarket Editor.

By Denise Rondini

Everybody talks about the importance of properly operating brakes, but, unfortunately, the talk doesn't always translate into action.

Tags: Aftermarket, Brakes, Brake Safety Week, CVSA

February 2015, - Feature

5 Ways to Improve Shop Productivity

Reorganizing the shop and optimizing workflow reduces the number of steps technicians have to take when inspecting vehicles.

By Denise Rondini

Every minute a truck is in the shop is a minute it’s not on the road making money. And while there is no way to eliminate all visits to the shop, improving shop efficiency will get trucks in and out faster.

Tags: Productivity, Vehicle Maintenance, Shop Equipment, Aftermarket

February 2015, - Feature

HDT Top 20 Products of 2015

By HDT Staff

These are the top 20 products from the past year which demonstrated innovation, significance to the industry and potential to improve a trucking operations bottom line.

Tags: Technology, Innovative Equipment, Heavy Duty Trucking magazine, Top 20 Products

February 2015, - WebXclusive

Leadership in the Age of Disruption

By Denise Rondini

Disruptive times call for innovative business owners to focus on vision, culture and their value proposition, said a business consultant during last week’s Heavy Duty Aftermarket Week.

Tags: Information Technology, HDAD, HDAW, Leadership, Consultants

January 2015, - Editorial

Commentary: Speak Up On Aftermarket Issues

Denise Rondini, Aftermarket Editor.

By Denise Rondini

It’s that time of year when suppliers, distributors and service providers all gather to talk to each other, share best practices and to discuss the future of the heavy-duty aftermarket.

Tags: Aftermarket Parts, HDAD, HDAW

January 2015, - WebXclusive

Coming Soon: Inflation Systems for Drive Axles

A schematic of Dana's Central Tire Inflation System, which is similar to the system the company is developing for the on-highway market.

By Jim Park

Drive axle inflation systems might not be the Holy Grail of truck maintenance, but they are in a position to cure a vexing problem. Tire pressure maintenance is time-consuming and costly, but there's no debating the savings from properly inflated tires. At least four manufacturers have systems in development. At least one is already available.

Tags: Dana Holding Corp., Automatic Tire Inflation Systems, Airgo, Tires

December 2014, - WebXclusive

The Aftermarket 2014: A Year in Review

While remanufactured brakes have long been used by fleets, many are now including other remanufactured parts in their overall parts strategy. Photo courtesy of Bendix

By Denise Rondini

It’s been a busy year for the heavy-duty aftermarket. With the age of the nation’s fleet still high, fleets are spending a lot of money to keep trucks on the road. Given the importance of maintenance and repair, we'll recap some of the key issues that affected fleets in this area in 2014.

Tags: Aftermarket Parts, Brakes, Remanufacturing, Capacity

December 2014, - WebXclusive

Air System Maintenance: Focusing on the Compressor

The accompanying video notes that you should take a close look at piston O-rings in the compressor.

By Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems

At the heart of a commercial vehicle’s air brake system is its air compressor. Bendix shares troubleshooting tips and how to replace an ESS piston.

Tags: Vehicle Maintenance, Bendix, Air Compressors, Brakes

November 2014, - Editorial

Better Maintenance Scheduling Leads to Better Service

Denise Rondini, Aftermarket Editor.

By Denise Rondini

Staying on top of maintenance not only improves the condition of vehicles, it can lead to improved business.

Tags: Vehicle Maintenance, Vehicle Repairs

October 2014, - Feature

The Private Label Parts Equation

Fleets need to do a risk-cost-benefit analysis when considering switching from branded to private label parts.

By Denise Rondini

With the growth of all-makes (often referred to as private label or value line) parts programs, fleets have more choices than ever for fulfilling their parts needs. But do these programs offer real choices or just muddy the parts purchasing landscape?

Tags: Vehicle Maintenance, Aftermarket Parts, OEM Parts

September 2014, - Editorial

Commentary: Managing the Shop

Aftermarket Editor, Denise L. Rondini

By Denise Rondini

Does the system come before the leadership? Or do you need the leadership and then the system?

Tags: Fleet Maintenance, Aftermarket, Managing the Shop

August 2014, - Cover Story

Inside the Numbers Driving the Heavy-Duty Trucking Industry

By Staff

There are many ways to tell a story – through words in books and magazines, pictures, videos, song, and more. With the inaugural issue of the HDT Fact Book, we are telling trucking’s story through facts, numbers, statistics, charts, and graphs.

Tags: Emissions, Drivers, Equipment, Statistics, Parts, industry statistics, Fuel and Oil

July 2014, - Cover Story

5 Keys to Best Parts-Buying Practices

By Denise Rondini

Trucks are on the road much longer than they used to be, and that translates into a greater demand and investment in parts, service, and ongoing maintenance. Which means parts purchasing decisions more important than ever.

Tags: Aftermarket Parts, Parts Inventory, Parts, Parts Management

May 2014, - Feature

How to Find a Service Provider

Select a service provider who has certified technicians and who has invested in the latest tools and diagnostic equipment.

By Denise Rondini

Finding and training technicians, purchasing tools and equipment, maintaining a parts inventory, dealing with OSHA and the EPA. These are just a few of the headaches fleets that maintain their own trucks face.

Tags: OSHA, EPA, Aftermarket, Dealers

May 2014, - WebXclusive

Inside Meritor’s Parts Distribution Center

Meritor offers a wide variety of undercarriage and drivetrain components. The company says it is seeing an increase in private label requests from both OEMs and heavy-duty marketing groups.

By Denise Rondini

Ever wonder exactly how the parts you order get to you when you need them where you need them? Meritor recently invited Heavy Duty Trucking to its Florence, Ky., Parts Distribution Center.

Tags: Aftermarket Parts, Meritor

April 2014, - Editorial

Commentary: Remanufacturing Redux

Denise Rondini

By Denise Rondini

Remanufacturing has been in the news quite a bit lately. I recently wrote about the need to include remanufactured parts as an integral part of your fleet’s overall parts strategy.

Tags: Frost & Sullivan, Aftermarket Parts, Remanufacturing

March 2014, - Department

Improving Your Trailer Appearance

Fontaine Renew can completely refurbish a standard flatbed trailer in about two and a half days on average.

By Kate Harlow

Tips for vinyl signage and images, plus refurbishing trailers.

Tags: Trailers, East Manufacturing, Mac Trailer, Refurbished trailers, VSP, Fontaine Renew, Conway Manufacturing, Vehicle Graphics

March 2014, - Department

Auxiliary Power For Work Trucks

Bill Decker’s Miller welder, stashed against a tool box on the front wall of his Wilcox truck body, doubles as an APU and makes 220-volt power to run heavy tools. The genset at his feet produces 110 volts for work lights and smaller tools.

By Tom Berg

Any work truck with a serious electric welder also has an auxiliary power unit, because the engine-driven device doubles as an APU to run smaller welders, heaters and power tools. And soon, purpose-built APUs will report for duty on work trucks.

Tags: Work Trucks, Maxwell Technologies, APU, Thermo King, Idle Free, Medium-Duty Trucks, Idle Reduction

March 2014, - Editorial

Commentary: How Much do Your Technicians Know About Wheel Integrity?

By Rolf Lockwood, Executive Contributing Editor

Executive Contributing Editor Rolf Lockwood discusses wheel integrity and the importance of technicians being well-versed in the rules of fastening wheels properly.

Tags: FMCSA, CSA, Wheels, Wheel-offs, Technicians

March 2014, - Feature

Avoiding Common Maintenance Mistakes

Drivers need to be trained to distinguish when a fault code means the truck needs to be brought in immediately and when it is okay to wait for the next scheduled maintenance appointment.

By Denise Rondini

Fleets try to do a good job of keeping their trucks in top operating condition, and most recognize that maintenance plays an important role in achieving that goal. Still there are some things that get overlooked by even the most seasoned fleet manager.

Tags: Maintenance, CSA, Aftermarket, Ryder Systems, Decisiv, Preventative Maintenance, VMRS

March 2014, - WebXclusive

Are Your Aftermarket Truck Parts the Real Deal?

Image source:<br />

By Jane Clark, NationaLease

Phony designer handbags…fake Rolex watches…buy these without realizing it and you’ll undoubtedly overpay for inferior products. Your wallet and your ego will both take a hit, but you’ll survive. But if you purchase fake aftermarket truck parts, the results can be disastrous.

Tags: Maintenance, ATA, Aftermarket Parts, TMC, Aftermarket, NationaLease

February 2014, - Editorial

Commentary: Dealing With a Lemon

Rolf Lockwood

By Rolf Lockwood, Executive Contributing Editor

There’s no shortage of readers who want me to intervene on their behalf because they’ve been victimized in some way. At least that’s how they describe their plight. Maybe it’s a “lemon” of a truck, possibly a contract dispute, sometimes a fight with an idiotic bureaucracy. For reasons I don’t always understand, they think I’m a consumer watchdog of some sort. I’m not.

Tags: Maintenance, Dealers

February 2014, - Feature

Stay Ahead of Trouble on EGR Engines

EGR valves live in a very hostile environment.

By Jim Park

While most of the early problems have been engineered out of the exhaust gas recirculation systems on today’s clean diesel engines, corroded coolers, stuck valves and other problems still plague owners of older equipment.

Tags: Emissions, Volvo, Cummins, Navistar, Detroit Diesel, SCR, EGR, EPA, Mack, DPF

February 2014, - Editorial

Commentary: Getting Ready For Discs

By Denise Rondini

Have you been avoiding spec’ing your vehicles with air disc brakes because you think they are not seeing widespread use or because you have concerns about the cost of maintaining them? Aftermarket Editor Denise Rondini says you may be surprised.

Tags: Managing the Shop, Bendix Spicer Foundation Brake, Air Disc Brake, Drum brakes, Meritor, Aftermarket, Brakes

January 2014, - Department

Keeping Your Wheels in the Game (updated)

Pictures are worth a thousand words, they say. What sort of a message do the wheels on this trailer convey about its owner?

By Jim Park

Back in 1984, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued a regulation requiring that truck wheels be stripped of rust and debris before mounting a tire. Easier said than done, the industry moaned at the time. Labor was less costly then, but wire brushes and elbow grease weren’t going to cut it.

Tags: OSHA, Goodyear, CSA, TMC, Tires, Wheels, IMI, Wheel refinishing, Maxion Wheel

January 2014, - Feature

Reman’s Place in Your Parts Strategy

Used compressors are disassembled and inspected at the Bendix remanufacturing facility in Huntington, Ind.

By Denise Rondini

While remanufactured components have been around for quite some time, not every one is clear on exactly what they are. Yet they could be a valuable component of your parts strategy.

Tags: Eaton, Volvo Trucks, Bendix, Meritor, Remanufactured Parts, TMD Friction

January 2014, - Feature

Once Around the Yard: How Salvation Army Won its P&D Battles

Henry Filoteo began buying new trucks to eliminate breakdowns.

By Tom Berg

Over the Christmas holidays, the Salvation Army’s bell ringers raise money to help fund its disaster and human-relief efforts. But considerable dollars also come from its daily pick-ups of donated household and office goods that are delivered to warehouses for sorting and refurbishment. These items are then resold in its Family Stores. For this, SA employs a fleet of medium-duty trucks.

Tags: Kenworth, Once Around the Yard

November 2013, - Department

Going Mobile: The BYOD Debate

Verizon was named the official wireless provider for the XRS collaboration with Samsung Mobile to offer a new product that includes a Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7-inch tablet and a subscription to XRS&amp;rsquo;s fleet management software.

By Jim Beach

Mobile computing is quickly becoming the platform of choice. Tablets and smartphones are far outselling laptop or desktop computers in the consumer market, and a growing number of trucking operations are deploying these devices.

Tags: Technology, Information Technology, J.J. Keller, Telogis, PeopleNet, NexTraq, TMW Systems, XRS, Carrier Logistics, Omnitracs, Samsung

November 2013, - Feature

Lifting Up Your Shop

There&amp;rsquo;s no such thing as one size fits all when it comes to shop lifts. This Skylift from Stertil-Koni is a heavy-duty platform lift that provides a clear floor concept for the user.

By Denise Rondini

Whether you have lifts in your shop or not, there are some factors to consider before purchasing a lift or when determining whether the lift you have is right for your needs.

Tags: Vehicle Lifts, Aftermarket, Managing the Shop

December 2013, - Editorial

Commentary: Is Purchasing Parts Online Right For You?

Not many dealership or parts distributors are selling online. One exception is Allstate Peterbilt Group.

By Denise Rondini

The Internet is opening avenues for parts purchases that never existed before. But does it make sense for you to consider adding online parts purchasing to your parts buying strategy?

Tags: Aftermarket Parts, Aftermarket, Information Technology

November 2013, - Feature

Getting the Lead Out of Tire Weights

True rotation of a several-hundred-pound mass and high speeds requires balancing, not just of the tire, but the entire rotating mass, including the hub, brake drum, wheel and tire.

By Jim Park

Beware the lead tire weight cops. They are out there and working in six states, with several more states looking at banning lead weights. Here's a look at the alternatives to lead in weights -- and alternatives to weights themselves.

Tags: Tires, Wheels

October 2013, - Feature

Aero Add-ons Put to the Test

Not all aero fitments produce the same results. SAE Type II test results from Performance Innovation Transport Group sheds some light on the differences.

By Jim Park

The Performance Innovation Transport Group recently tested trailer side skirts and undercarriage air deflectors.

Tags: SAE, Aerodynamics, PIT

October 2013, - Feature

Keeping Your Wheels On

A calibrated torque wrench is required to set the recommended torque on wheel fasteners. Over-torqueing with an impact wrench can stretch and weaken the studs.

By Jim Park

There’s no mystery to why wheels come off trucks. The National Transportation Safety Board in 1992, and Ontario’s Ministry of Transportation in the late 1990s, both concluded after exhaustive studies that inadequate maintenance was the root cause of a series of fatal wheel separation incidents.

Tags: TMC, NTSB, Tires, Wheels, Accuride, Timken, Spicer, ConMet, Ontario Ministry of Transportation, Wheel-offs

October 2013, - Feature

Commentary: The Changing World of Choosing Parts and Service

By Denise Rondini

The relatively simple aftermarket of the ‘80s has become a rather complicated one. Fleets now have more choices than ever for their parts and service needs. Aftermarket Editor Denise Rondini explores these changes in her new HDT column.

Tags: Aftermarket, Parts and Service

October 2013, - Feature

Beyond the API 'Donut:' Putting a Premium on Oil

Oil experts say there  area a number of factors that fleets need to consider in the oil selection process.

By Denise Rondini

Every fleet knows how important oil is to the proper operation of their vehicles, but how can they determine if upgrading to a premium oil makes sense for them?

Tags: Oil, Exxon Mobil, Shell Lubricants, Chevron Lubricants, Grease, API, Maintenance

September 2013, - Feature

The High-Tech Shop

Devices that allow drivers to conduct and record driver vehicle inspection reports electronically, such as those from Zonar, transmit maintenance issues directly to the fleet and maintenance manager for immediate action.

By Jim Beach

In some fleets, shop operations are completely integrated with the computer systems for dispatch, accounting, mobile communications and outside service providers. In other fleets, technology in the shop may be limited to automated systems for tracking work, labor, parts and inventory.

Tags: Technology, Arsenault Associates, Mitchell 1, Zonar, Managing the Shop, TMW, Omnitracs

September 2013, - Feature

Retreading Wide-base Tires

Most fleets could get a good trailer tire out of a third-generation retreaded tire.

By Jim Park

Wide-base tires aren’t cheap. Not that duals are cheaper, but in a single wide-base tire you have an investment approaching the cost of a pair of standard tires. Minimizing the life-cycle cost of those big wide tires almost demands that they be retreaded.

Tags: Wheels, Managing the Shop, Retreads, Wide-Base Tires



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