Something as crucial as fleet maintenance shouldn’t be left to chance. In order to keep your trucks running properly – and to get the most performance and longevity from them as you can – you’ll need a comprehensive fleet maintenance plan.
A fleet maintenance plan lays out every strategy and detail for keeping your fleet operational and prolonging its lifespan. There are plenty of benefits of having one, and creating a plan can go a long way toward streamlining your operations and protecting your trucks.
The Benefits of a Fleet Maintenance Plan
A plan has several benefits, including:
- Saving money in repair and replacement costs: Repairing and/or replacing a truck can be a very expensive endeavor that has other ramifications for your bottom line. The better you maintain your vehicles, the less likely it’ll be that you’ll have to do a major repair when a truck breaks down (usually at the worst possible time.)
- Keeping your service record spotless: Busted vehicles can lead to poor service delivery, which leads to less business and damage to your revenue. Timely and regular maintenance can prevent this.
- Cutting maintenance costs: Having a fleet maintenance plan can actually reduce maintenance costs because you have a systematic approach that cuts the fat and produces a lean maintenance program. By streamlining how you take care of your vehicles, you’ll do more in less time with fewer resources.
Having a plan versus not having one can be a difference that amounts to thousands of dollars per year in gained – or lost – revenue.
Creating Your Maintenance Plan
The first step is to develop a maintenance checklist. This is a comprehensive document that contains every step in the maintenance process, from start to finish. Nothing should be left out. It should be all-encompassing and concise. Every single system in a truck’s maintenance plan – from the brakes to the engine, transmission, and tires – should be included.
Next, develop a plan for how your drivers and your mechanics are going to communicate. This is the place where you develop a system, a routine, habits of communication that your drivers and your technicians will use to talk about what’s going on with the truck. If you don’t have this communication, you could have a big problem brewing that your mechanics know nothing about.
Detail how often your team will talk amongst itself and how they’ll do it. Come up with a standard for what information will be shared.
Next, create a maintenance schedule. It’s up to you to determine how often a specific truck will need to be inspected, the more regularly you inspect the vehicle the better. Keep a strict schedule.
Finally, train your team in following the plan and communicating what each person needs to know in the clearest way possible. You don’t want things breaking because your drivers didn’t tell your technicians what they need to know – or because your mechanics didn’t talk to each other and you.
By using a fleet maintenance plan, you’ll save money and streamline your operations while protecting your bottom line.
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