Big truck operators are on the roads rain or shine, 12 months out of the year. Winter poses some challenges to truckers, however, as short hours of daylight and icy conditions can make driving treacherous. Preparation is key to arriving at your destinations safely and on time.
To get your truck ready for the winter months, take the time to check off all the items on this list:
- Check your lights – Short winter days means that you’ll spend more hours driving in the dark. Make sure your headlights, running lights, tail lights, and all other lights are operating properly.
- Check your clamps and hoses – Winter temperatures can exacerbate small holes and leaks in your coolant system. Check the coolant system to see if it’s at full. If not, fill it up with appropriate coolant and have a mechanic check out the system to find leaks that you may have missed.
- Replace worn out seats – Worn out truck seats can make you uncomfortable and distracted from the road, which can be a problem in challenging conditions like ice or snow. Replace old seats immediately.
- Check your battery – Cold temperatures can do a whammy on weak batteries. If your battery is already marginal, one cold night can kill it. Test your battery to see whether it is properly charged and whether a new one is needed. If your battery is three years old, you may want to go ahead and replace it, regardless of its current meter reading.
- Check your tires – In icy conditions, the grip on your tires may be all that separates you from a dangerous accident. Be sure to check your tire pressure and add air if needed. Also, check wear and tread on your tires to determine whether replacements are needed.
- Check your oil – Make sure you’re using the right oil viscosity for winter temperatures. You can consult with the manufacturer of your engine with the proper viscosity for cold-weather temps or with a trusted mechanic.
- Check your washer fluid – Make sure your washer fluid reservoir has enough fluid to defrost your windshield in icy conditions.
- Check your air dryer – Make sure air dryers have been changed out before the winter to ensure the air supply system functions properly.
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