When it comes to vehicles on the road, fewer things take more abuse than big rigs. This is due to lots of mileage, driving through different climates, and just the general wear and tear that all vehicles endure.
Big trucks carrying big truck loads require constant TLC to keep them in efficient working order.
Are you a trucker wondering when you should replace your truck? Here’s some helpful info to be aware of.
Keep Your Truck in Top Shape
For starters, let’s not forget that long haul trucks using truck load boards are generally built for the long run. It’s not uncommon to see trucks that make it one million miles before intensive engine repair work is needed, although most major companies will sell off their trucks to smaller operators when they’ve reached between 400,000 and 600,000 miles. While these are just averages, they can be a good reference point. Let’s take a look at some more specific numbers.
- Many manufacturers recommend a regular service every 15,000 miles for preventative reasons.
- Premium inspections that entail more in-depth examinations like checking alignment, overhead run on engine and more should be done annually.
- Regular pre-trip inspections and checking tire pressure are good practices.
With this in mind, what factors will affect how often your truck needs to be serviced?
- Truck Application: Are you traveling close to home or frequently making inter-regional trips and going across the country? Depending on how you use your truck, you may need more frequent service and inspection.
- Season and Location: Of course, where you live and operate of, more importantly the seasons in that location, can expose your truck to extreme weather conditions that can affect performance and maintenance schedules. If you live in an environment with harsh weather conditions, be sure to prepare accordingly.
- Mileage: This one is fairly obvious, but also one of the easiest to keep track of. At a minimum, you should be having service and inspection done every 30,000 miles, or once a year, whichever is first. This servicing allows the mechanic to inspect for early signs of wear and tear before they become major problems.
Staying on top of your pre-trip inspections, regular maintenance, and getting a professional opinion are the best ways to monitor when you should retire your big rig.
For many drivers, using loadboards keeps your truck loaded and on the road. Make sure your rig is ready to handle whatever load you might find. Every truck is exposed to different elements so what your truck needs may vary in comparison with others, but maintaining regular servicing and inspections can keep your truck in the best condition possible.