For fleet managers in harsh winter bearing States, the seasonal festivity is juxtaposed by what it means for vehicles. Mechanical breakdowns, high repair costs, and upticks in vehicle accidents an unfortunate, but fairly preventable reality.
Harsh weather conditions due to high winds, freezing temperatures, slippery roads take a toll on any vehicle. Fleet vehicles which are on the road for longer periods of times than average, require additional oversight, and maintenance. Preparing your fleet vehicles for winter and its importance cannot be understated.
Below are just a few tips to get you started:
- Understanding and utilizing correct fuel: Seasonally enhanced fuel in colder environments can save fuel-economy from deteriorating. Managers also have the option of using special additives to increase power and fuel economy. We recommend that the choice of additive be heavily researched.
- Checking vehicle lights: Something as simple as a dysfunctional blinker could cause easily avoidable damages. This is especially true in the winter seasons when the roads are slicker than usual.
- Keeping appropriate water and fluid levels: Engine coolant does not age well replacing old coolant with fresh antifreeze added is a must. Water can sometimes freeze in fuel storage tanks and filtration systems. This can cause extensive fuel system damage to fuel pumps and injectors.
- Tire pressure must be checked every few weeks: Ensuring tires are pumped and the thread is at least the AA recommended 3mm for winter driving. Driving on underinflated tires can also cause unwarranted wear. Driving on overinflated tires can reduce grip and increase the risk of damage from road debris and potholes.
- Battery Maintenance: A very common winter breakdown issue, as cold weather can affect the chemical reactions that aid in holding a charge.
Above is a fraction of the preventative fleet maintenance steps managers should take to ensure their fleets are operational during winter. We recommend fleet owners and managers perform extensive research on keeping vehicles operative in the winter seasons.