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Maintaining a fleet of delivery vehicles is a tall order. Keeping up with preventive work is taxing enough, but the demands of repairs can make the process almost impossible to manage. The road time you lose and the bills you pay can make a delivery vehicle breakdown a huge burden on your bottom line. These tips can take some of those repairs out of the shop and into your garage or parking lot, saving you time and money. Here are four quick and easy ways to get your delivery vehicles back online quickly.
Know Your Parts Sources Ahead of Time
It’s not necessary to have a supplier lined up for the obscure parts deep inside a vehicle, but you do know the things that are most likely to take a vehicle off the road for repairs. Keep a list of tire sizes and the phone numbers of shops that stock them. Know where you can quickly get a Scania left hand headlamp, door handle, or mirror. The time you save in seeking parts will pay for itself right away.
Keep Some Basic Tools
Sometimes having the right tool is 90% of the repair. Imagine arriving one morning to find a flat tire on a delivery vehicle. If you have an air compressor, you can quickly fill it and determine if it can make it to the shop or if you need to change it right there. Basic sockets in both metric and ASE sizes are a must, along with screwdrivers, hammers, pliers, and drills.
Learn How to Improvise
Ideally, a broken tail light should be replaced. The vehicle isn’t roadworthy until you are showing red light on the correct lamps, but sometimes those parts can take a little while to arrive. If the light still works, use red translucent repair tape to get it compliant until the new light comes. The same strategy can apply to cargo door latches, coolant leaks, and many other problems. Just don’t make your improvisations permanent.
Study the Basics
Heavy work like transmission repair is not for the inexperienced mechanic, but many other jobs can be. There are countless online videos and narratives that can explain even some fairly complex repairs. Get comfortable with some of the common jobs like replacing alternators and starters. The time and money you save will be significant.
Somewhere on the spectrum of repairs is a point where you can’t do it yourself and need a professional. The higher you can push that point, the more time and money you’ll save. Some simple tools and skills can help you get your trucks back on the route as quickly as possible.