Hi this is Kary with Modern Diesel, I’m back to you today with a new blog that is going to help you a lot if you drive a diesel truck. Choosing a cost-effective fuel to meet our auto needs represents the major reason why diesel trucks are preferred by many. Diesel is priced higher than gasoline but more energy can be derived from diesel. This is mainly due to the high mileage of diesel as against the same volume of gasoline.
Diesel trucks make use of compression ignited-injection systems, unlike gasoline vehicles that make use of spark-ignited systems. This method of operation causes air to be drawn into the engine which is subjected to high compression that generates heat.
This creates a very high temperature in the engine. Owing to this extreme temperature and pressure, diesel that is let into the engine ignites. Therefore, there is a need to keep the engines relatively cool at all times. Cooling diesel engines are achieved either by air or liquid.
Vehicles are used across all seasons which includes diesel trucks. Extreme temperatures during summer and winter affect diesel trucks differently and therefore require special care to keep them working properly.
Here are safety tips to keep in mind while using diesel trucks.
Safety Tips For Diesel Trucks
Safety while driving a truck is of highly essential to ensure the preservation of our lives and property. Large trucks are used in conveying bulky goods and fuel. If trucks are not well maintained, the event of an accident could cause a catastrophic disaster. Hacks for driving a diesel truck safely include the following:
- General safety tips for diesel truck drivers.
- Summer safety tips for diesel trucks drivers
- Winter safety tips for diesel trucks drivers.
General Safety Tips For Diesel Truck Drivers
The following are standard safety practices for truck drivers.
- Putting On Personal Protective Equipment: Personal protective equipment like a hardhat, safety boots, eye protection, and hand protection should be worn before and while driving the truck. The equipment should also be inspected for faults before usage and replaced if worn out.
- Carefully Mounting And Dismounting The Truck: All points of contact according to the truck manual should be observed to avoid accidents while mounting or dismounting.
- Check For Repairs: Check the truck thoroughly for parts that might need repair or maintenance before riding. Also ensure emergency kits such as fire extinguisher, eye wash, spill kit, and first aid kit are in the truck. All hoses, valves, and latches should be secured properly
- Clean Up Regularly: Windscreen, steps, windows, and mirrors should be cleaned properly to remove all debris and dust. Also, enjoying outings in your truck regularly can enable the accumulation of gunk dirt that can pose a threat to your vehicle. Regular cleaning and removal of gunk is a nice hack for your truck safety.
- Careful Parking: Diesel trucks should be parked on level ground that is safe from hazards and at least 300ft away from water.
- Proper Gear Selection: Gear failure is one of the major causes of diesel truck accidents. Therefore, proper gear selection is paramount to maintaining control while driving.
- Ensure To Meet TDG Requirements: It is of highly essential to have your proof of TDG training handy as well as play cards and other shipping documents while driving a truck especially when traveling.
Summer Safety Tips For Diesel Truck Drivers
Summer is all about the heat and the thrill of having fun in the sun. However, the same heat can pose a threat to the cooling system of your diesel truck.
Here are essential hacks to help you enjoy your truck and save its cooling system from damage despite the heat.
- Check the Air Conditioner: As soon as the summer heat sets in, take your truck to a professional mechanic for repair and maintenance to ensure the cooling system is working properly. Delaying till it gets too hot can pose a threat to your truck.
- Inspect the Tires: Tires undergo wear and tear faster in summer periods as a result of the increase in heat which sometimes gets trapped in them. The safety measure to consider is to ensure a mechanic checks it properly to fix or replace worn-out tires. Also, there are special summer tires that are designed to adapt to the heat of the season.
- Check the Air Filter: The issues with the air in your truck are not always because of the summer heat. The problem may be your air filter. When the filter is dirty, the truck works extra hard to keep you cool. So, cleaning the filters might be all that is required to have a cool ride.
- Inspect the Coolant System: The diesel truck can break down once the coolant system malfunctions. It would be very frustrating to have your truck break down under the increasing summer heat. Therefore, having a professional mechanic inspect the coolant system of your truck at the inception of the summer season is great.
- Replace Fluid Regularly: Checking up on truck fluids regularly ensures the smooth running of your truck. One important fluid check is the oil. Although changing oil is a regular practice for both car and truck drivers, the summer season is a period where truck drivers need to be more frequent in changing the oil. This is because summer is a holiday period that brings about lots of driving travel that burns more truck oil.
- Inspect The Exhaust System For Repair: The exhaust system of the truck needs to be checked regularly as it could affect the health and environment directly. Problems should be attended to early as soon as they surface. The exhaust system is easily prone to damage.
Winter Safety Tips For Truck Drivers.
The sudden weather change associated with winter poses challenges to many people. The chill from frigid winds, slippery surfaces, and cloudy skies are not felt by individuals alone. Automobiles also freeze in winter weather and therefore adjust to keep working effectively.
Diesel trucks unlike other automobiles require special maintenance to work effectively in winter. Below are ways winter affects trucks.
- Tires lose pressure when at rest as a result of the cold weather but bounce back once in motion and have gained a little heat.
- Fluids protecting the engines sometimes cool and thicken which can affect the performance.
- Other parts of the truck such as the windscreen, wiper, engine batteries all change in the chill of winter weather.
Diesel engines require a great deal of care when temperature drops in winter and here are safety hacks to keep your truck running smoothly in winter.
Fluid Change In Late Fall: As soon as you approach the end of fall, the time to prepare your truck for the winter weather also begins. One important hack is to change the oil. This is because changing the oil in colder months is difficult as the oil might thicken with the decreasing temperature.
Draining bad oil is difficult when the engines are cold in the winter months. However, driving with bad oil running in the engine all through the chill period can be hazardous.
Aside from oil change, all fluids used in the truck need to be changed at the end of the fall as well. The disadvantages of changing the oil in the winter months are also applicable to other fluids.
There is winter-friendly diesel with zero paraffin wax which makes it perfect for the winter months.
Carry Out Pre-Winter Inspection: Some truck dealers offer pre-winter maintenance of diesel trucks. Getting your truck checked by the dealer at the inception of winter is very important.
Have a complete check of truck parts to rule out faults of any kind to enable a smooth ride in the cold months ahead.
Parts known to be vulnerable in winter such brake cylinders and calipers due to the slippery surface should be checked properly.
Ensure a professional mechanic checks all fittings and make sure they are well greased to avoid squeaking. Also, have the lights and other electrical compartments checked.
Have the batteries checked and replaced if necessary? Since most diesel truck batteries come in twos, it is essential to change both at the same time.
Safety Tips in Winter Months: Adjusting storage and driving habits in winter months can enable ease of driving diesel trucks. Some of these adjustments include;
- Before operating, give ample time for the truck to warm up properly.
- Ensure to park the truck in a heated garage or near walls so that engines do not get cold.
- Use an engine block heater to keep the engine warm regularly.
- Remove corrosion build-up from battery terminals regularly.
- Reduce unnecessary driving as much as possible to save your truck from breaking down in the cold. Trips can be combined or scheduled.
Repair Faults Immediately: In winter, little truck problems can turn into huge ones if left unattended. Repairs should therefore be carried out as soon as they are noticed. Here are some common problems diesel truck drivers complain about in the winter months.
- Fuel injector failure.
- Metal rust in the undercarriage.
- Wobbly steering wheel.
Diesel trucks are great to have, help in fuel management and can convey bulky goods which make their maintenance of immense importance. Some of the best hacks and safety tips to keep in mind enumerated above would guide drivers in both cold and hot weather.