The true money saver!
Yes the regular oil, fluid and filter changes, as well as greasing all fittings IS important. This will definitely save money. If you can learn how to do this yourself, you can save a few thousand a year. It's not that difficult to do. You will save exponentially more money through fuel economy!!! If you can minimize your rolling resistance and your aerodynamic drag; this usually will garner you .5 miles per gallon better fuel economy.
Add it up. Your fuel tanks hold 200 gallons. This means you will go 100 miles further on every tank of fuel. This usually translates into 15 gallons of fuel expense. 15 times today's 4 dollars per gallon equals 60 bucks of savings per fill up. Solo trucks need to be filled every two days (teams daily). That translates to at least 10000 per year! That 10000 will get you a rebuilt engine this year, new tranny next year, new gears and wiring the year after that then guess what...you have a new truck for all intents and purposes.
-----Response from Vicki:
Thanks so much for sharing information on what preventive maintenance
professional truck drivers can do their on their trucks. This is particularly important for owner-operators.We
think that some drivers may be a bit intimidated by
how to do their own maintenance (unless, of course, they are used to doing their own maintenance on their personal vehicles).
We would be interested to know how you got your start on doing your own big truck preventive maintenance and if there are any "courses" that an owner-operator can take to learn how to do it on some of the newer rigs.
How much would you say it costs to get all of the tools and equipment
needed to do
* oil changes;
* fluid changes;
* filter changes; and
Where, in your opinion, is the best place to buy the best possible quality of tools at the lowest prices?
Are there special considerations to take into account when you get ready to do your own preventive maintenance, like
* finding a "pit" where you can get under the truck to do the work;
* disposing of the oil;
* catching drips and spills; and
* cleaning up afterwards?
Is there a preferable state (USA-only) where this kind of work should (or can) be done?
Please feel free to submit other truck drivers money saving tips on this issue and others that are related.
We wish you safe travels and lots of money saving opportunities on the road.