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Truck Blog

Truck Blog

Conducting A Truck Brake Inspection

We all know things wear out over time – including trucking components. The speed at which things wear out depend on driver habits, weather, the climate and how the truck is used.

It’s important for truck owners, operators and service people to have a system set up to record wear patterns and inspection results. Keeping up with the test results over time and making timely repairs will extend the service life of their truck fleets.

We’re talking about trucks braking systems so we don’t really need to emphasize how important keeping this system well maintained is. Technicians should keep brakes… Continue reading

California Regs Throw Kinks Into Traditional Equipment Cycles

Chris Shimoda, manager of environmental policy for the California Trucking Association moderated a panel with Mark Sturdevant , fleet sales & emissions specialist for the Velocity Vehicle Group and Robert Tennies, truck sales consultant for Western Parts & Equipment, at the 2013 Fleet Executive Conference in Las Vegas. They discussed how the 2007 California Regulations have disrupted traditional equipment cycles.

It was the consensus that the 2007 emissions requirements have been huge and even egregious. So much so that it has been driving many owner-operators out of business in California. It’s not uncommon for owner-operators to not qualify for a truck loan these days.

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10 Strategies to Curb Medium-Duty Truck Operating Costs

Because of worsening road conditions, more stop-and-go traffic and higher operating costs, it’s becoming more expensive to operate medium-duty trucks. Some of the operating cost components include volatile diesel prices, higher parts and labor costs and higher tire prices.

Containing costs is a challenge. Here are 10 strategies some truck fleet owners are trying:

  1. Increased use of engine governors in medium-duty trucks.
    A maximum speed limiter can eliminate speeding tickets, aggressive driving, accidents and complaints.
  2. Rightsizing.
    More truck fleet owners are able to use smaller trucks yet meet their cargo needs.
  3. Growing acceptance of using remanufactured components.
    Because of budget… Continue reading

Healthcare Law Will Affect Truck Businesses

The signing of the United States’ Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act in March of 2010 means big changes for trucking companies beginning in 2014.

The law says that employers with over 50 full-time employees will need to provide insurance for their employees beginning in 2014. The formula defines a full-time employee as anyone working more than 30 hours a week. Part-time employees are categorized as anyone working less than that, and are included in a staff total on a sliding scale.

To calculate how many part-time employees a trucking company has, take the number of part-time hours it assigns… Continue reading

How Much Does A Truck Really Cost

A truck’s cost should be thought out and calculated by thinking of the buying-using-selling cycles. A more realistic cost of the price of a truck should also include financing and tax implications. This is from Patrick Gaskins, AmeriQuest Transportation Services Vice President of Financial Services.

Gaskins believes that those in procurement believe that getting the lowest price and best financing is the way to go. The fleet manager thinks a truck with the highest fuel economy and lowest repair costs would be best. Then you have the department handling disposition of used assets thinking about resale value.

In an ideal… Continue reading

Bi-Fuel CNG System Introduced for Isuzu and GM Delivery Vehicles

DuraDrive bi-fuel CNG System from AGA Systems are being introduced in Texas and Louisiana. Nat G CNG Solutions from Houston made this announcement recently.

This technology will serve the 2013 General Motors and Isuzu adaptable chassis platforms powered by the 6.0L gaseous prep engine. The system is available for both above and below 14,000 GVW vehicle classes.

This system has DOT approved CNG cylinders that are EPA certified and will be used with these trucks:

  • GMC & Chevy Cutaway Vans
  • Utility Service Body, Bed Delete and Isuzu NPR trucks

The new DuraDrive system is available now and deliveries will begin… Continue reading

Selecting the Right Tires for Medium-Duty Trucks

Selecting the right tires for medium-duty trucks affects vehicle performance, fuel economy and tire replacement cycles. There are more variables involved when selecting tires for medium-duty trucks vs. light-duty. They include:

  • different tread types designed around a truck’s operating weight and tire position
  • tires designed for long haul, and on or off-road trucks

Tires should be selected on the basis of specific application of the truck and weight considerations.

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Truck Battery Maintenance

Your truck battery needs regular preventive maintenance. Corrosion can cause problems, downtime and expense. It’s best to spend a few minutes routinely inspecting each truck battery and going through the following steps:

  1. Use battery cleaner spray to neutralize any acid buildup.
  2. Rinse with water.
  3. Loosen terminal nuts with a wrench. Always disconnect the negative post first.
  4. Use a battery post and terminal brush to brush any residue and corrosion.
  5. Reattach the terminals to the post, doing the positive terminal first.
  6. Spray battery protective spray on battery terminals.
  7. Wipe your tools with a rag. Any sulfuric acid on rags can eat holes in them.

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Gas or Diesel Pros and Cons in Class 3-4 Trucks

Which works best for Class 3-4 truck engines – gasoline or diesel? It’s important to balance performance, fuel-efficiency and budget when making this decision for your truck fleet.

We’ll list 9 factors to assess when deciding between diesel or gasoline engines to help guide you in your decision.

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