Business Magazine

Winterizing Your Fleet

Posted on the 26 December 2012 by Fleetmatics @fleetmatics

More Strain Doesn’t Need to Mean Less Gain

With winter comes the onset of frigid temperatures, and with that comes added strain on your fleet of vehicles.  With gas mileage being poorer this time of year, we do have some tips to help get you through those cold, snowy months with little strain on your fleet.

  • Have your battery checked.  Lower temperatures can impose added stress on both batteries and alternators, making them work extra hard to maintain a steady charge in your electrical system. Having a strong battery at the beginning of the colder months is vital.  Your local automotive dealer or automotive parts store will test your battery for free.
  • Additional Weight. Many fleet drivers find it beneficial to use added weight to provide better traction.  The added weight, such as sand bags or kitty litter, can be stored in the trunk of the automobile or back of the truck to make the automobile steadier on slippery roads. This is an inexpensive, yet effective method for better traction and enhanced fleet safety.
  • Fill those tires.  The cold weather can often lead to reduced tire pressure due to loss of air, which is certainly a safety hazard for drivers. Low tire pressure also affects fuel efficiency, so check those tires and visit your local gas station to fill with air, as needed.
  • Avoid Excessive Idling. Drivers are known to let their automobiles and trucks idle more often during the colder months – to either warm up their car and engine or to clean off snow and frost.   And, due to the increase in traffic during the winter months, idling while sitting in traffic is not uncommon. Remember that those extra minutes of idling can increase your fuel consumption and you may need to visit the gas station more often.  With gas prices in a seemingly endless upward climb, the last thing fleets want to do is waste fuel. GPS Tracking allows those managers to immediately put an end to driving behaviors and fuel-wasting activities that burn money by monitoring fuel use and idling times, improving routes and deploying the nearest vehicles for customer calls.

In addition to the tips mentioned above, Fleet Maintenance Reports can extend the life of your vehicles and keep your fleet productive as well. Service Alerts help you manage the maintenance needs of your vehicle fleet.

In most parts of the country, temperatures will be dropping before you know it, so preparation is key. And, remember that in colder months, many industries see an increase in business and more activity amongst fleets. During these colder months, accidents also increase due to poor weather conditions. Remind your drivers to get adequate rest for those long trips to avoid accidents. As always, safety first!

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