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7 Tips For Truck Maintenance This Summer

Summer is here, and your fleet will be out driving long hours in the hot sun. While the icy road dangers are behind us, the issues of overheating, construction and traffic may plague truckers in coming weeks. The hotter it gets, the higher the risk of overheating and engine breakdown. Maintenance is the best way to stay on the road this summer season.

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It's always a good idea to perform regular oil changes, but in the summer season your schedule may need some more minor adjustments. In order to stay on the road, it’s important to understand how heat can affect vehicle parts and your driving experience. When semi trucks are on the road in the summer heat, there is more demand on certain parts of the vehicle, and the risks are still high. Ensuring safety and efficiency this summer season means performing regular maintenance on some of the most affected parts of your vehicle. 

Windshield Wipers

Your wiper blades should be replaced annually, as their ability to function at utmost effectiveness is  limited. They’re an affordable way to enhance safety and visibility. In spring and summer months, rain is a frequent factor in trucking, so you will need to ensure that your wipers are working properly.

Air Filters

The road is a place where debris, bugs and even dust can get into your truck in the smallest of spaces, so it’s essential to have a proper system in place. Engine air filters function to prevent the dust, bugs or debris from getting into the system and clogging it. In order for your vehicle engine to function at optimal ability, your air filters should be replaced at least every 15,000 miles. Remember, if your system ends up clogged, your engine may work harder to make up for the issue and thus your fuel consumption, and wear and tear, increases.


Your truck will likely use up more coolant fluid during summer, so it’s important to keep in mind to check fluid levels more often this season. Windshield washer fluid, engine oil and coolant are the most significant right now as there is greater usage in these areas. The usage tends to increase during these warmer months and it’s easy to forget to check up on these levels often.  You will also want to check the radiator cap for wear and issues.


Summer season is notorious for tire blowouts and deflated tires, due to the temperature changes. When it gets hot out, tires inflate as hot air expands, and the friction on the hot road surface will further damage the tires. At high speeds these types of patterns can lead to blowouts, so it is essential to check tires in all your pre-trip and post-trip inspections, looking at pressure and tread depth as well, and maintain them regularly.

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The weather and temperatures outside have a significant impact on a braking system in a vehicle, and this can affect your safety and stopping distances. When the weather heats up in summer, brakes can fade or find loss of friction, meaning they are not able to absorb all the heat around them. It’s essential to check and maintain your brakes regularly and watch for any fading. Temperature changing to hotter weather can result in the wearing down of brake linings, pads and hoses quicker, and you want to avoid potential brake failure.  


While winter time is dangerous for battery issues, you will also want to consider how high heat can impact the life of your vehicle battery as well. Checking the charge regularly can prevent a potential surprising failure which can leave you on the side of the road.

Air Conditioning

Driving long hours in the summer heat, comfortably, is not possible without a good air conditioner. You want to test your air conditioner before each trip and look for any leaks in the hoses or odd noises. Make sure to get any issue fixed, as a lack of air conditioning is a health risk for the driver too, so make sure that you are not exposing yourself to potential fatigue or a heatstroke by not maintaining your air conditioning system. 

Summer season can put more stress on your vehicle than you realize, so preventative maintenance is key to avoiding unnecessary wear and tear. Stay prepared by performing regularly scheduled preventative maintenance on your fleet’s tires and brakes, and adding the necessary fluids or coolant. Remember, heat can have just as strong an effect on your vehicle as freezing cold temperatures, so it’s important to take it seriously!