To have an effective and efficient fleet, you should always have the best maintenance procedures for your equipment in place. If your vehicles and equipment aren’t maintained properly, you may struggle to keep up with your deliveries or tasks. You don’t want to deal with angry customers or expensive repairs; these problems are detrimental to your business. It can be hard to get on top of equipment maintenance, which is why we will break down some of the best practices you can put in place for your equipment maintenance procedures.
What You Will Need
You will need a few items to start planning your equipment maintenance procedure. These include:
- A checklist of all preventative maintenance actions to perform during scheduled maintenance
- The frequency of preventative maintenance
- A process for drivers/operators to submit written inspections
- A process for drivers/operators to submit written complaints (when a vehicle/machine has a problem)
- The facility where repairs will take place
- A staff of technicians capable of performing repairs and maintenance
- A method of keeping records
- A process for ordering parts and maintaining spare parts inventory
Step 1: Establish a Baseline
You’ll need to know the current status of your fleet vehicles and equipment to establish an equipment maintenance procedure. Start with a complete inspection of every asset on hand and obtain the maintenance history for each machine, including what parts were replaced and any other data available. You’ll need a current inspection and service record for every vehicle, along with a baseline of current mileage, fluid levels, and additional similar information.
Step 2: Determine Maintenance Intervals
How often do your vehicles and equipment need to receive maintenance? Maintenance schedules may vary depending on the asset you’re considering. For example, a gas-operated vehicle may have a maintenance schedule based on mileage. However, other equipment may have a maintenance schedule based on engine hours. You’ll also want to consider operating conditions, such as how many drivers are operating the vehicle, whether it is towing, and other environmental factors that may cause wear and tear. Just be sure that the data point that determines when you take your vehicles in for maintenance is measurable.
Step 3: Develop Your Maintenance Checklist
This entire checklist should be reviewed every time your vehicle goes in for maintenance. Of course, the specific items depend on the vehicle or equipment, but some things to include may be:
- Changing engine oil and filters
- Inspect cooling and fuel systems
- Inspect and change driveshafts, CV joints, belts, and hoses
- Inspect electrical system and components
- Inspect steering and suspension
- Replace tires
- Inspect exhaust system
- Inspect interior and exterior lights
- Inspect seat structures and seatbelts
- Check for fluid leaks
- Check transmission fluid
- Inspect engine and transmission mounts
- General tune-ups
- Inspect brake system and replace brake pads and rotors
- Inspect tires, wheels, and rims
- Evaluate undercarriage and frame
- Replace windshield wipers and fill windshield fluid
- Address auxiliary systems
You can adjust the checklist as needed if issues arise.
Step 4: Develop Driver Inspection and Reporting Systems
Your drivers know your vehicles better than anyone and are best equipped to report any issues. They can monitor many parts and systems listed above and let you know if attention is needed. Establish consistent procedures for reporting any problems and ensure they are adequately communicated to all of your drivers and operators.
Step 5: Track Metrics and Monitor Success
You will need to establish key performance metrics to track your results. You should be able to see a reduction in unscheduled maintenance and an increase in the lifespan of your vehicles. It should be easier to see if certain vehicles are experiencing breakdowns more than others or if certain parts are acting up. This data makes it easier to make decisions regarding maintenance overall so you can further improve your process.
Let Azuga Help You Keep Your Vehicles in Top Shape!
Azuga offers the ability to track these key performance indicators and keep up with your vehicles’ maintenance needs. With our maintenance alerts, you will always know when your vehicle has an issue that needs addressing, and our scheduled maintenance alerts prevent you from ever missing your preventative maintenance. Find out more about what Azuga can do by trying a demo today.