5 Key Tips to Keep Your Fleet Running Smoothly
Fleet maintenance impacts an organization’s bottom line in more ways than you might think. While keeping your fleet in good working order is imperative to lower maintenance costs, it also has a significant impact on everything for employee productivity to sales.
Well-maintained fleet vehicles mean less downtime due to unscheduled repairs. Therefore, preventative maintenance is essential. However, often the only routine maintenance checks are for oil changes. Instead, use oil changes as an opportunity to do an overall vehicle safety check as well as tire rotations and inspections.
Ace Supply shares five key tips to keep your fleet, and your business, running smoothly:
1. Consider the age of your fleet vehicles: Rising maintenance costs often correspond to an older fleet. Consider the manufacturer’s warranty and the residual value of each vehicle so you know when it is time to replace a vehicle.
2. Know the demands a vehicle faces. Always outline exactly what a vehicle will be used for. This includes things like load weights and time on the road. If you over or underestimate these things you likely will be hit with unexpected maintenance issues.
3. Let drivers know their responsibilities. Every driver should understand and adhere to your organization’s preventative maintenance schedule for their car or truck. Drivers also should know what they need to do if something needs to be fixed or they are involved in an accident. Often maintenance doesn’t get taken care of because everyone thinks it is someone else’s responsibility. Even if drivers aren’t in charge of overall maintenance, that doesn’t mean they don’t have any responsibilities. Vehicle handling, fuel efficiency and tire wear all can be tied directly back to tire pressure, for example. This is a case in which drivers need to understand that it is their responsibility to check and maintain tire pressure between scheduled maintenance.
4. Take advantage of cloud-based fleet management software. In order for everyone to keep up with service and maintenance, cloud-based software is recommended. Such software allows for mobile accessibility and provides automated service reminders. It also allows drivers, technicians and fleet managers to access this information as necessary.
5. Develop a close relationship with a trusted vehicle parts supplier. When there is a problem with a fleet vehicle, a trusted supplier can quickly get you the quality part you need at a fair cost. This prevents wasting time trying to locate a part or worrying that you are being overcharged.
In the end, effective fleet management is a team effort. For your organization to be successful, every driver, fleet manager and maintenance technician must work together to keep your vehicles on the road as safely and affordably as possible.
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