Maintenance

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June 2016, TruckingInfo.com - Department

Improve Fuel Efficiency by Maximizing Tire Life

Photo: Jim Park

By Jim Park

Tires contribute approximately 25-35% of a truck’s total rolling resistance. The less rolling resistance, the less energy it takes to move the truck. And a tire with less or thinner tread requires less energy to move than a deep-treaded tire.

Tags: Fuel Economy, Tires, Low-rolling Resistance, Tires and Wheels

June 2016, TruckingInfo.com - Department

8 Steps to Better MPG Through Maintenance

Proper alignment is an often-overlooked maintenance task that can have a significant effect on fuel economy. Photo: Paul Hartley

By Deborah Lockridge

We asked leading fleet maintenance managers and the North American Council for Freight Efficiency for tips on how preventive maintenance can help improve fuel economy.

Tags: Fuel Economy, Technicians, Preventative Maintenance, Repair Shops

June 2016, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

RoadCheck Begins: Don't Be Sidelined by Your Tires

Tread wear is the most obvious defect-- and one that immediately catches an inspector's eye. Photo: Jim Park

By Jim Park

Vehicle inspections take on a little more significance during RoadCheck, which begins Tuesday. Tires are the special focus this year. Have a close look at your tires before the inspectors do; it's may keep you out of the hooskow.

Tags: Tires, CVSA, Roadcheck, Inspections

May 2016, TruckingInfo.com - Department

Refinishing Wheels the Right Way

Juan Klinehoffer, the “wheel man” at Bob Sumerel Tire in Zanesville, Ohio, air-sprays positively charged powder at the negatively charged wheel. There it clings until curing.

By Tom Berg

Road salts damage steel and aluminum wheels, and there are proper ways to maintain and repair them.

Tags: Preventive Maintenance, Corrosion, Wheels, Tires and Wheels

May 2016, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Figuring Out DPF Maintenance

Diesel particulate filters appeared in 2007 model-year trucks. After nearly 10 years we are still grappling with maintenance issues.

By Jim Park

DPF and aftertreatment systems may be a maintenance nightmare, but they aren’t going away. It’s up to you to figure them out.

Tags: Maintenance, Emissions, DPF

May 2016, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Modern Maintenance Manager: Cutting Waste in the Shop

One way to use Lean in the shop is to look for ways to cut wasted time and movement by technicians. Photo: XPO Logistics

By Deborah Lockridge

What can the modern maintenance manager learn from productivity tools designed for manufacturing? Quite a lot.

Tags: Productivity, Maintenance Management, Repair Shops

May 2016, Business Fleet - Feature

’Gamification’ Helps Fleet Focus on Driver Safety

Michael Crafton stands in front of one of his company's Nissan NV cargo vans. Photo courtesy of Team 360.

By Amy Winter-Hercher

This growing service fleet promotes driver safety through a connected car platform that tracks each driver’s behind-the-wheel habits — and scores them.

Tags: Driver Safety, Vehicle Maintenance, Connected Vehicle Technology, Service Fleets, Zubie

April 2016, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

The Modern Maintenance Manager: Safety Matters

More than ever, maintenance is as much about safety as anything else.

By David Cullen

The twin forces of increasing safety regulation and a burgeoning driver shortage are compelling the modern maintenance manager to do nothing less than think, live, and breathe truck safety.

Tags: Vehicle Maintenance, Maintenance Management, Fleet Safety

April 2016, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

The Modern Maintenance Manager

By HDT Staff

What does it take to be a successful modern maintenance manager — and to be ready for what the future brings? Heavy Duty Trucking is exploring the topic with a series of articles that examines the different aspects of being a shop manager in today’s trucking industry.

Tags: Maintenance, Technician Shortage, Maintenance Management

April 2016, TruckingInfo.com - Editorial

Commentary: Today’s Kids, Tomorrow’s Technicians and Drivers

Deborah Lockridge

By Deborah Lockridge

Do we have a technician shortage, or are we not taking care of the resources we are provided? Editor in Chief Deborah Lockridge looks at this question in this editorial.

Tags: Technician Shortage, Recruiting, Employee Retention, Technicians, TMC

April 2016, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Ryder’s Bill Dawson Wades into Modern ‘Sea of Data’

Ryder's Bill Dawson talks about data. Photo courtesy Today's Trucking

By Today's Trucking

MISSISSAUGA, ON — More data is available to the trucking industry today than ever before in its history, to the point that data and maintenance have become integrally linked. But it will take time to figure out how to perfectly integrate this new sea of data into day-to-day business, says Bill Dawson, VP of maintenance operations and engineering for Ryder System Inc.

Tags: Information Technology, Big Data, Canadian Fleet Maintenance Summit

April 2016, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Clean Data, Achievable Goals Keys to Avoiding Information Overload

By John G. Smith, Editor, Today's Trucking

MISSISSAUGA, ON – Kirk Altrichter, vice president of maintenance for Nebraska-based Crete Carrier, says the ability to gather maintenance data in real time is nothing short of amazing. But what do you do with it? Second in our series from the Canadian Fleet Maintenance Summit on the role of data in modern maintenance operations.

Tags: Big Data, Canadian Fleet Maintenance Summit

April 2016, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Big Data Can Guide Big Maintenance Decisions, Panel Says

By John G. Smith, Editor, Today's Trucking

"In the perfect world, I’d like to see a truck tell me what’s wrong with it,” said Crete Carrier's Kirk Altrichter in a panel at the inaugural Canadian Fleet Maintenance Summit. Learn more in this first installment of a series on the role of data in modern maintenance operations.

Tags: Canada, Big Data, Canadian Fleet Maintenance Summit

March 2016, TruckingInfo.com - Department

3 Ways to Save on Tires

Which tire is best? Buyers have many price ranges to choose from. Cheaper up front may not be the best value in the long run. Photos: Jim Park

By Jim Park

Everybody knows tires can eat up a big chunk of a fleet’s operating budget. Keeping costs in line isn’t impossible, but you have to work at it. Here are three suggestions that can help you get a handle on tire costs and keep them under control.

Tags: Tire Costs, Fleet Maintenance, Tires

March 2016, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Q&A: Forrest Lucas on Starting and Building Lucas Oil Products

Forrest Lucas at the bottling conveyer belts in Lucas Oil's second plant in Corydon, Indiana. Photo: Lucas Oil

By Stephane Babcock

In this Q&A we sit down with Forrest Lucas, founder of Lucas Oil Products and talk about his early life, building a company and the lessons he has learned in the past 27 years in the lubricants industry.

Tags: Leadership, Lubricants, Fuel and Oil, People, Q&A

March 2016, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

The Modern Maintenance Manager: The Connected Shop

Computers in the shop have become commonplace. The modern maintenance manager is moving beyond that to data analytics and predictive maintenance. Photo: Evan Lockridge

By Deborah Lockridge and Jim Park

From remote diagnostics to predictive analytics, being on top of maintenance today means using data and connections.

Tags: Maintenance, Maintenance Management, Connected Diagnostics

March 2016, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

TMC Members Share Corrosion Experience, Advice

Aggressive road salts can do a number on sheet metal, like the rear of this cab, especially if maintenance is ignored.

By Tom Berg

At the recent meeting of the ATA's Technology & Maintenance Council, fleet members talked about road salt-induced corrosion and how to combat it.

Tags: TMC, Corrosion, Road Salt

February 2016, TruckingInfo.com - Department

How to Reduce the Burden of Tire Maintenance

When it comes to tire maintenance, many chores can now be automated.

By Jim Park

Tire maintenance needn’t be a mind-numbing inconvenience. These tools can reduce the workload and improve efficiency.

Tags: Maintenance, Tools, Tires

March 2016, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Doing More to Solve the Technician Shortage

From left, George Arrants, Kenneth Calhoun, Dave Williams, and moderator Lou Stumpp from Navistar. Photos: Deborah Lockridge

By Deborah Lockridge

Trucking needs to do more to get the technicians of tomorrow educated and into truck shops. That was the message of a standing-room only panel discussion Tuesday morning at the Technology & Maintenance Council’s annual meeting.

Tags: TMC, Technicians

February 2016, TruckingInfo.com - Editorial

Commentary: Bridging the Extremes

Rolf Lockwood

By Rolf Lockwood

How do we make the latest technologies attractive to folks who don’t pull white vans down smooth highways?

Tags: Information Technology, Diagnostics, Predictive Analytics

February 2016, TruckingInfo.com - Cover Story

The Modern Maintenance Manager: Managing Today's Technicians

By Deborah Lockridge

With trucks turning into sophisticated equipment resembling computers on wheels, plus increasing emphasis on uptime, controlling costs, and safety and compliance, today’s technicians need to know how to do much more than turn a wrench.

Tags: Maintenance Management, Technician Training, Technicians

January 2016, TruckingInfo.com - Department

How Truck Tires Have Evolved

New tire designs emerge from tire makers almost monthly.

By Jim Park

The tread designs of medium- and heavy-duty truck tires have become more sophisticated and tailor-made for specific applications and wheel positions.

Tags: Tires and Wheels, Yokohama, Goodyear, MICHELIN, Continental

January 2016, TruckingInfo.com - Editorial

Efforts Under Way to Get More Training to Independent Garages

Denise Rondini

By Denise Rondini

Component suppliers and others are making moves to ensure technicians at independent repair garages are well trained.

Tags: Fleet Maintenance, Garage, Repair Shops

January 2016, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

8 Ways to Make Outsourcing Work For You

If you choose the right service provider, their technicians can even take diagnostic tools out into the field.  Photo: Travel Center

By Denise Rondini

Many fleets have tried outsourcing, only to bring their maintenance and repair work back in house because of negative experiences. But that doesn’t have to be the case.

Tags: Outsourcing, Fleet Maintenance, Repair Shops

December 2015, TruckingInfo.com - Department

5 Tips to Prevent Wheel Separation

Impact wrenches are fine for running wheel nuts up onto the studs, but a torque wrench must be used to set the nuts. Retorquing is highly recommended, but few, apparently, get around to it. Photos: Jim Park

By Jim Park

Research into past incidents shows inadequate maintenance is the root cause of most wheel separation incidents.

Tags: Preventive Maintenance, Wheel Separations, Tires and Wheels

December 2015, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

6 Takeaways from 2015 in Truck Parts and Service

Like the driver shortage, the need to find qualified technicians is an ongoing problem. Photo by Paul Hartley

By Denise Rondini

The truck parts and service aftermarket got a lot of attention in 2015, as the focus of many fleets shifted to total cost of operation rather than cost per mile. This shined a bright spotlight on maintenance and repair practices as ways to keep asset utilization high.

Tags: Technicians, Brakes, Remanufactured Parts, Right to Repair, Counterfeit Parts, Aftermarket Parts

December 2015, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Reduce Your Maintenance Burden With Air Disc Brakes

Air disc brakes require minimal routine maintenance. Most of the moving parts are internal. Brake pads will often last for the first life of a tractor. Photos: Jim Park

By Jim Park

When you look at the reduced and simplified maintenance requirements of air disc brakes, better stopping power becomes the icing on the cake.

Tags: Fleet Maintenance, Brakes, Air Disc Brake

December 2015, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Maintaining Air Springs and Shock Absorbers

This brand-new air spring won’t need much attention until it’s worked for many miles and its rubber bag ages through contact with the elements. Its operating range is 40 to 100 psi. Photo: ContiTech North America

By Tom Berg

Air suspensions are subject to wear and aging, and must be regularly inspected and repaired or replaced when necessary.

Tags: TMC, Suspensions, Air Springs

December 2015, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Everything in Moderation (Including Additives)

Cold-flow additives don't work the same way as de-icers. Photo courtesy Advanced Fuel Solutions

By Paul Nazzaro, Advanced Fuel Solutions

Want to prevent fuel gelling in your trucks this winter? Using too much cold-weather fuel additives can actually make things worse rather than better. Learn why.

Tags: Winter, Fuel, Fuel Additive

November 2015, TruckingInfo.com - Editorial

OEMs Step up Efforts to Help Fleets Improve Total Cost of Ownership

Denise L. Rondini

By Denise Rondini

It seems like truck makers are acknowledging they have fallen short in their efforts to help fleets improve uptime and lower their total cost of ownership.

Tags: Aftermarket, OEMs, Uptime

November 2015, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

4 Suspension Maintenance Items You Might Overlook

All bolts must be properly tightened and periodically checked for proper torque. Telltale signs of loose fasteners include shiny areas and weeping rust around them. Photo: Reyco Granning

By Tom Berg

These complex mechanisms cushion the truck, load and driver, but too often are victims of neglect.

Tags: Fleet Maintenance, Suspensions, Axles

November 2015, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Why Do Wheels Come Loose?

Impact wrenches are fine for running wheel nuts up onto the studs, but a torque wrenches must be used to set the nuts. Retorqueing is highly recommended, but few, apparently, get around to it.

By Jim Park

Investigations into hundreds of wheel separation incidents reveals that whether it was loosened wheel fasteners or failed bearings due to improper installation or loss of lubricant, better maintenance could have prevented all but a few of the incidents.

Tags: Wheels

November 2015, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Preparing Your Winter Tire Program

HDT File Photo

By Pressure Systems International

For commercial tires, fall is the best time to insure winter tire programs are completely up to speed.

Tags: Tires, Winter Equipment, Winter, Tire Pressure

October 2015, TruckingInfo.com - Department

How Important are Balance and Alignment?

Alignment is best used as a repair tool, not a diagnostic tool. The tires themselves will tell you when an alignment is needed.  Photos: Jim Park

By Jim Park

Fleets seem to run hot and cold on alignment and balance. Some swear by them, while others see them as unnecessary expenses.

Tags: Wheel Alignment, Tires and Wheels, Wheel Balancers

October 2015, TruckingInfo.com - 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, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Getting Your Cooling System Ready for Winter

Photos: Jim Park

By Jim Park

As temperatures dip and the leaves change from green to yellow and red, it’s time to think about winterizing your trucks for the siege ahead.

Tags: Preventive Maintenance, Winter, COOLANT

September 2015, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Why Proper Fifth Wheel Maintenance is Important

Proper fifth wheel maintenance is important to ensure the tractor and trailer stay together.

By Denise Rondini

Proper fifth wheel maintenance is important to ensure the tractor and trailer stay together.

Tags: Maintenance, Trailers, Fifth Wheels

September 2015, TruckingInfo.com - Department

Tracking Lifetime Tire Costs

Is the lowest tire cost per mile the ultimate fleet objective? Not necessarily. Strive to keep the rubber costs down, but don’t scrimp on the maintenance. Photo: Jim Park

By Jim Park

We offer two opposing views on tracking tire costs. One holds that life-cycle costing is a waste of money and effort, and that close enough is good enough most of the time. The other suggests that nearly all costs associated with tires should be accounted for and built into the cost structure.

Tags: Operating Costs, Maintenance Costs, Tires and Wheels

September 2015, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Q&A: New Committee Head Talks PC-11 Oil Category

Shawn Whitacre, senior staff engineer at Chevron. Photo courtesy Chevron.

By Deborah Lockridge

There's a new head of the committee developing the new heavy-duty engine oil classification, known as PC-11. HDT talked to Shawn Whitacre to find out what fleets need to know about the new oils.

Tags: PC-11, Chevron Lubricants, Chevron Delo, Engine Oil, GHG, Fuel Economy, Low-Viscosity Oil

August 2015, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Tips for Checking Greased Wheel Ends

This wheel is weeping but is essentially OK. Photo courtesy SKF

By Scott Simmonds, SKF

Maintenance tips to help achieve maximum service life for greased wheel ends, as well as several symptoms that may indicate potential problems down the road.

Tags: Grease, Wheels, Lubrication

August 2015, TruckingInfo.com - 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

July 2015, TruckingInfo.com - Department

Preventing Irregular Wear on Wide-Base Tires

Wide base tires are thought to suffer premature wear. That’s sometimes the case but it’s not universally true.

By Jim Park

Do wide-base single tires wear differently than standard tires in dual assemblies? We address that question and give tips on how proper care of your wide-base single tires can improve their life and ROI.

Tags: Wide-Base Tires, Tires and Wheels, Tires

July 2015, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

A Step-by-Step Approach to Brake Maintenance

Photo via Haldex

By Haldex

Taking shortcuts when doing a brake job can lead to problems such as uneven wear and substandard braking performance.

Tags: Preventive Maintenance, Brakes, HALDEX

July 2015, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

Maintaining S-Cam Foundation Brakes

Photo courtesy of Bendix

By Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems

S-cam drum brakes are a familiar sight to every wheel-end technician in the North American trucking industry. These preventive maintenance guidelines can elevate the effectiveness of regular brake jobs.

Tags: Preventive Maintenance, Brakes, Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems, Automatic Slack Adjusters, Drum brakes

June 2015, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

When the Road Meets the Rubber

The very pavement you drive upon is chewing away at your tires, mile after mile. Photo by Jim Park

By Jim Park

Irregular or accelerated tire wear is annoying and expensive, but there's something else eating away at your expensive assets: the pavement itself.

Tags: Tires, Highways, Pavement Research

June 2015, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

Keeping Diesel Fuel Clean

The presence of water or other fluid mixed with diesel fuel is clearly apparent from the stratification shown here.

By Deborah Lockridge

If you don’t take steps to keep diesel fuel clean, it can degrade your fuel economy, damage expensive fuel system components and cause downtime. That’s never been more important than today.

Tags: Filtration, Filters, Engine Protection, Diesel

June 2015, TruckingInfo.com - 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, TruckingInfo.com - Department

Maintenance is Key To Retread Longevity

Retreading gives a second or even third life to a casing, increasing the payback on the initial investment.

By Jim Park

TMC’s latest fleet tire survey shows retreaded tires are going longer and further than some may expect – but maintenance is the key.

Tags: TMC, Survey, Retreads, Tires and Wheels

May 2015, TruckingInfo.com - WebXclusive

It's National Tire Safety Week

Photo courtesy of Goodyear.

By Jim Park

Tire maintenance plays a big role in fleet safety and efficiency. Now is a good time to remind drivers and technicians about the importance of proper tire care.

Tags: TPMS, ATIS, Tire Inflation

May 2015, TruckingInfo.com - Feature

9 Best Practices for Recruiting and Retaining Technicians

A well formulated mentor program assigns new technicians to more skilled technicians who can answer their questions and serve as an industry expert. Photo: Ryder

By Denise Rondini

For many fleets the diesel technician shortage is already a reality. Here are nine things that will help you in your technician recruiting and retention efforts.

Tags: Recruiting, Technician Training, Technicians, Retention

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