To ensure safety, it is important to keep your refuse handling equipment running smoothly.
First of all, never let cost get in the way of maintaining your equipment. The cost of a good preventive maintenance program will always pay for itself over the long run. Calculate how much your truck earns for you in a day. Keep this figure in mind so that you'll know just how much unproductive downtime costs you.
Your safety and the others is the most important reason for inspecting your truck and keeping it in good and safe operating condition.
You or your mechanic should do a chassis inspection daily if at all possible. You should use a set form and check off each inspection point. Any identified problems should be scheduled for repairs as quickly as possible. You can use the following as an example of a checklist for your truck chassis.
Daily Chassis Inspection
●Check the engine, transmission, rear differential, power steering, and wheel seals for lubricant or coolant leaks.
●Check the condition of all belts, hoses, lines, including such items as engine belts, the fuel crossover lines, radiator hoses, water lines, air lines, power steering lines, automatic transmission lines, etc.
●Check the power steering for excessive play.
●Check your air pressure and make sure your truck is building up air fast enough and to the proper level.
●Check tread and wear condition of all tires and check for too much or too little pressure.
●Check wheels and rims for any damage or cracks.
●Check the brake shoes and drums for excessive wear or cracks.
●Check your front axle and rear suspension for bad or cracked springs and or worn bushing and pins.
Drain your air tanks daily. Check for excessive moisture.
●Pay close attention to any frayed wiring and check battery connections.
●Make sure all lights are operational.
●Make sure your city and air horns are working.
●Wipers must be working and always check your washer fluid.
●Check your windshield and mirrors for visibility and cracks or chips.
●Make sure you have a fire extinguisher and flares in the vehicle.
Training the driver
Train your driver to always watch his gauges for signs of trouble. It is critical that he immediately communicate with the mechanic regarding any problems that he thinks the vehicle might have.
Remember, you should always grease your truck on a weekly basis. The following is the basic recommended intervals for oil changes. It may vary among manufacturers.
●Engine Oil 250 hours
●Automatic Transmission 500 hours
●Standard Transmission 1,000 hours
●Rear Differentials 600 words
●Power Steering 1,000 hours
●Antifreeze 1,000 hours
●Hydraulic Oil 1,000 hours
On the Extenders
Like any other auto parts, your truck bed extender must also be taken into consideration. It is important that the bed extender is firm to avoid falling for the back part of your pick up truck. Bed extenders are determinants of your car’s firmness and strength on carriage.
There are small inexpensive extra items that you can put on your truck to extend the life of the components. For example, you can add oil coolers to the hydraulic system, power steering system and the automatic transmission. These add-ons might double, even triple the life of some components.
If you are currently running a fleet of trucks and do not have maintenance program in place, the first few months of implementing a program can be expensive. However, keep in mind, it will pay off.
If you are currently running a refuse truck or fleet, you should do a body inspection every week.