The Convoy to D.C. 2022 aims to launch the convoy from numerous points across the nation and eventually meet in Washington, D.C.
The Convoy to D.C. 2022 aims to launch the convoy from numerous points across the nation and eventually meet in Washington, D.C.
Buy vs Lease Truck is one important decision future owner-operators must take. Both options offer benefits as well as drawbacks. There are many different situations that apply to different people. Always keep in mind that a truck is a tool for work first, and a vehicle second. Potential business owners should consider the job at hand to make the best choice.
If you are starting your trucking career, leasing a truck makes sense or you if lack good credit. It does not require a significant down payment, and the monthly or weekly amount is generally smaller than that of a loan. The driver will own the truck, as the lease agreement ends. There is a type of lease where a downpayment is required. Monthly payments are generally low because the balloon payment at the end of the contract matches the value of the truck at the time. For example a 10 percent down payment on a $130,000 vehicle with $2000 per month for 60 months and a balloon payment of $24,000 at the end. This is a sweet deal for a new truck if you plan to keep and use it for longer than five years.
The most common lease is directly through a trucking company. Weekly payments will be deducted from the driver's check. A required down payment of around $5000 will be needed. It shows good money management skills and establishes good faith. It also allows for lower weekly payments.
Drivers are responsible for the maintenance of the trucks unless the lease is from Ryder or Penske. These two companies charge between $0.12 and $0.20 per mile for regular maintenance. This, however, does not include accidents and or incidentals. If you hit a deer or a rock cracks the windshield, repairs come out of your pocket.
When a future owner-operator purchases a truck and finances it, the bank takes the title as collateral for the loan. The driver owns the vehicle, and like in the lease (unless the lease is from Ryder or Penske) all responsibility for the ownership falls on him.
Financing a loan is a cheaper option. Also since the driver is the owner, he can build some equity in the truck. If the market is strong, an owner-operator can make extra principal payments towards the loan, thus paying it off early and saving on interest.
Drivers need a credit score of over 630-650. That puts those with less than perfect credit at a disadvantage. The higher your credit score, the better the interest rate on the loan will be.
Many banks require down payments when credit history is an issue. Ten percent is standard, but some will only ask for five. Almost any lender will agree to finance a truck driver with 20 percent cash in pocket. Putting down a substantial down payment secures lower monthly payments that won't put a toll on the driver when the market is slow.
A major factor in improving the odds of financing a truck is the previous owner-operator experience. Many banks will deny even 20 percent down payments if the future truck owner cannot provide past truck payment history. That is probably the main reason why many drivers start off with a lease. Experienced truck drivers are not necessarily experienced business owners, and banks know that. Previous owner-operator experience shows knowledge of how to manage a business and offers banks more security.
Your winter truck maintenance is something that you need to take care of every winter season.
Maintaining your truck during the winter and making sure it is performing at the best operating efficiency is essential for success. You get most of your truck by having it on the road. The first step to ensure efficient and reliable performance is by maintaining it properly. Winter is coming and we know what is coming with it - snow, cold nights, ice, and winds.
You need to prepare your vehicle for the temperature drop. One of the most common winter mechanical faults is a frozen engine. Your cooling system and radiator are under a lot of stress during the cold winter months. Their proper functioning is vital for keeping the engine cool without freezing in the winter.
The coldest and wettest months are always a challenge. Now is the time to prepare your truck properly for the months ahead.
The engine in your vehicle is an internal combustion engine where power is generated through the expansion of high temperature and high-pressure gases. Due to the combustion gas and the friction of mechanical parts, a lot of heat is generated. The heat in question should be removed from the engine and kept at operating temperature.
Water pump - it is an essential part of the system. It pumps the coolant and is the heart of every cooling system.
The Radiator is a heat exchanger used to transfer the excess heat developed by the engine to the atmosphere.
The thermostat regulates the flow of the coolant. It is a valve and it helps to maintain the proper operating temperature for the truck engine during the winter. Regulating the amount of coolant that goes through the radiator is The Thermostats' role.
CTS role is to monitor the engine temperature.
A coolant is a liquid or gas substance, mainly used to regulate or reduce the temperature of a system. This special fluid runs through the engine to keep it at the correct operating temperature range. The coolant has a high thermal capacity and low viscosity. It is usually made from ethylene glycol or propylene, water, and some protection additives.
The fan's main purpose is to turn on whenever your truck coolant goes above a certain temperature to prevent overheating. Your truck's cooling system is fundamental for your winter truck maintenance to efficient and safe driving. Its main purpose is to prevent overheating by distributing the engine's heat evenly throughout the whole system. The result of a failed cooling system can lead to breakdown and costly repairs.
Antifreeze is a chemical. His consisting of ethylene glycol or sometimes the lower toxicity propylene glycol. When mixed with water it serves to lower the freezing point and raise the boiling point in the mixture.
It also includes some corrosion inhibitors that which role is to prevent rust from forming on the metal parts like water pumps and engine blocks. You can see broken inhibitors when the antifreeze gets brown or rusty in color. In that case, replacing the antifreeze is a must.
The antifreeze works because the freezing and boiling points of liquid are colligative properties. Тhey depend on the concentrations of solutes or dissolved substances in the solution.
A pure solution freezes because the lower temperatures cause the molecules to slow down. The attractive forces between them bind them into rigid crystalline structures. By adding a different kind of molecule to the mix blocks those attractive forces prevent the crystalline structures from forming. Adding more solutes will lower the temperature be before the solution can freeze.
Ethylene Glycol works great because not only is it water-soluble it is also miscible which means it can be mixed with any amount and still mix evenly.
Antifreeze and water should have a mixture percentage based on the lowest temperatures typically seen in your climate. In most regions, these are 50-50 water-antifreeze mixture which will provide enough protection from little below freezing to a high of 265 degrees (129 Celsius). In the coldest temperatures, you could use a mix of 60 to 70% antifreeze.
The coolant flows through a path that takes it from the water pump through the passages inside the engine block where it collects more heat produced by the cylinders. Then it flows up to the cylinder head (or heads in a V type engine). After that, it collects more heat from the combustion chambers. Then it flows out past the thermostat, and it goes straight through the upper radiator hose and then into the radiator.
In the radiator, the coolant flows through the thin flattened hoses that make up the core of the radiator and it's cooled by the airflow across those vents. The coolant flows out of the radiator through the hose and back to the water pump, by this time cooled off and ready to perform this cycle again. Tips:
Many coolants come pre-mixed with water, but on some occasions, during the winter you may need different coolant to water ratios for better results and performance. When the temperature is below freezing outside, the correct coolant mix will help with keeping the engine from coming to a halt.
The operation of your cooling system depends on the belts, seals, and hoses surrounding it. The cold weather can be destructive to those components. Inspect and replace any components before the cold winter months. This assures you that during the winter
Inspect caps, look for cracks, and replace if you discover any damage. It is also recommended that you replace the caps when you flush the vehicle's coolant.
Coolant leaks are not rare and they are recognizable due to the color of the coolant (usually green/yellow/pink). The leaks are easy to identify underneath the vehicle. If you encounter a leak of any kind it is best to get it looked at by a professional mechanic before it turns into a bigger problem.
You need to fill your radiator with coolant and you have to make sure the fluid is at a proper fill level. The best way to check if that is the case is when the vehicle is cool. Open the radiator cap and if the coolant looks low then you will most likely need a refill. Make sure to get it looked at by a professional before it is too late.
With time, dirt can build up in the cooling system, preventing the proper flow of the coolant. If there are contaminants, the fluid can also lose its effectiveness if not refreshed from time to time. Before the winter begins, consult with a specialist on the best time to perform a flush.
You should check the radiator tank and reservoir once or twice a year. Often times you can discover small holes or punctures that you need to fix. If they get too big you may have to do a much larger repair and replace the radiator.
The temperature drop during the winter has its consequences - fluids can freeze and hoses can crack in the cold. The American Trucking Associations' Technology & Maintenance Council (TMC) is the official and accepted authority in the United States for heavy-duty trucking maintenance standards.
Maintaining the Conventional pre-charged Inorganic Acid Technology (IAO) and Hybrid Organic Acid Technology (HOAT) coolants needs to happen on an engine preventive maintenance interval of 25,000 miles, or as specified by the engine manufacturer.
On the other hand, Nitrated Organic Acid Technology (NOAT) coolants require a charge to achieve the full 600,000 miles or 12,000-hour service life. The recommended extended charge is 300,000 miles or 6,000 engine hours. Nowadays, OAT - Organic Acid Technology coolants provide up to 600,000 miles or 12,000 engine hours of service life.
The TMC has released recommended colors for different types of coolants. Please have in mind that while these are established colors, they are not required and some manufacturers do not follow the color guidelines.
Below you can find the color recommendations:
Please have in mind that the color on the packaging could be different from the color of the content in the bottle. Don't judge a book by its cover and always make sure to read the label so you know you have the right coolant in your hands.
Recognizing a potential issue before it turns into a major concern can be a game-changer for your efficiency. Below you can find other helpful tips for keeping your truck on point in the winter:
Testing your truck batteries is very important during the winter. The cold weather during the winter months can drain a truck battery faster and the battery connections get dirty and corrode in the winter. Make sure you keep an eye on the batteries by testing them and keep the connections clean.
Your truck depends on fuel. An old and dirty filter can prevent the fuel from getting through. Тhus it will affect the operations of the truck.
Always base your fuel needs based on the weather at your location and your destination. Diesel fuel treatment will keep your fuel from gelling and will increase the longevity of your fuel system.
Like Alan Lakein said: “Planning is bringing the future into the present so that you can do something about it now.”
By doing your winter truck maintenance you do yourself and your truck a favor. Your truck will be ready for the winter. This way you will feel more safe while you are on the road.
Let's be real. We all know that the average truck driver runs ridiculous amounts of miles. But how long can a truck driver drive and how many miles can drivers drive?
Thanks to their hard work they keep the heart of the American economy beating.
Every item that you touch on a daily basis is in your hands' thanks to a truck driver. If you are not familiar with the industry you will hardly understand the sacrifice a trucker does every day. In this article, we will cover the enormous amounts of hours every trucker works, so you can have all the goods at your disposal every day.
The main rule is that truckers can drive only 11 hours per day, according to the Hours of Service regulations of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.
Most trucks are set to 65-70 miles per hour. When we do the math the amount comes to 605 to 650 average miles per day. Keep in mind that weather, traffic, police checkpoints, and the route the driver is running affect the driver's mileage.
A driver, under law, can work for a maximum of 14-hours per day. After that 10 consecutive hours is required to spend off work.
Keep in mind that there can be some unpredicted time consumers. Looking for a safe parking space, loading, and unloading, making dinner, eating, or shower time. These activities can reduce the overall sleep time to only 4-5 hours.
Department of Transportation workers are likely to question any mileage that is greater than 500 miles per day, as it is difficult to get these miles in while staying in compliance with the time requirements.
There can be different circumstances that can allow an OTR truck driver and Regional driver to drive for more than 11 hours:
The FMCSA implemented a weekly rule for drivers that is called the 60/70-Hour duty limit. Depending on what start period the carrier specifies this limit can be based on a 7-day or 8-day period.
This rule implies that drivers cannot work for over 60 hours in a 7-day period or 70 hours in an 8-day period. It is specified that the trucker can only work for 60 hours for 7 consecutive days and 70 hours for 8 consecutive days.
Once you have your 60 or 70 hours completed, you need to take 34 consecutive hours off duty before you can drive again. This period when you are not on duty is called a 34-hour restart. This allows you to reset your duty period to zero, so you can start a new 7 or 8-day cycle. During this period you can work on non-driving tasks - loading and unloading freight, paperwork, etc.
This rule is not mandatory, but most companies are using it in order to prevent driver fatigue.
This entirely depends on the truck driving job. An OTR driver can spend more than 300 days on duty. This is sometimes pretty difficult for them. It reduces their home time and it taxes their time they spend with their loved ones.
When it comes to the driving job that spends the most time at home a local truck driver is the winners. Most of them drive during the night and they get back home in the morning. A regional driver also enjoys a more frequent time home. They usually drive during the week and spend their weekends at home.
The main reason people choose OTR is that it pays more and offers an opportunity to see the country. But a trucker's life is one of solitude. If you are not a fan of loneliness, it may not be the best job for you.
Choosing the OTR position comes also with its benefits. This is the position that pays more and offers more opportunity to see the country.
According to the U.S Department of Transportation the average American driver for 13,473 miles per year. When you break down the number it comes to around 1,000 miles per month or about 250 miles per week. Truck driver miles are a whole different story. On average they can cover 2500 per week! That is 10 times more than the average American driver.
If we check the statics we can see that men are driving more miles than women. We also can see that the average American truck driver is getting older. The reason for that is that a lot of younger drivers have a difficult time entering the trucking industry. This is due to the fact that a truck driver has a pretty hectic and busy life away from home, which is not so pleasing to the younger generations.
If by any chance the driver doesn't comply with the DOT rules, there are some severe penalties:
The trucking company can suffer even more severe penalties if it is found to have knowingly made the drivers break the federal regulations.
Overall the truck drivers drive a lot more than the average American. DOT rules may be strict about the hours a trucker can drive, but this helps to prevent them from driving when tired or otherwise unable to pay proper attention to the roadway, thus keeping everyone on the road safer.
Winterization Procedures for Travel Center locations except in Illinois and Iowa:
Pilot Flying J will begin blending a single treatment of cold flow improvers when the outside temperature reaches +15F to +5F. Should the outside temperature reach +5F to -5F, we will begin double treatments of cold flow improvers.
If the outside temperature dips below -5F, the fuel will be treated with double treatments of cold flow improver and 20% of No. 1 fuel. Should No. 1 fuel not be available in the market area, triple treatment of cold flow improver will be used.
All stores, except the cold weather locations listed below, will receive treatment as needed.
Cold weather locations will begin treatment once the outside temperature reaches +15F and will continue treatment until March 1, 2021 regardless of the outside air temperature.
COLD WEATHER LOCATIONS:
Includes all stores located in the following states:
Also includes the following locations:
Procedures for Travel Center locations in Iowa and Illinois:
Once treatment begins at any Illinois or Iowa location, double treatment rates will continue until March 1, 2021 regardless of the outside air temperature while biodiesel is being blended.
Lubrizol and Tellico brand will be Pilot Flying J’s primary winter diesel additive providers for the 2020-2021 winter season.
Aggressive driving is an event that in recent years we see quite often on the U.S roads. We've all experienced it in different forms. This driving behavior is not expected to be absent from the roads any time soon.
An Aggressive driver present on the road can increase the number of waccidents. Aggressive driving behavior is especially dangerous when truck drivers are on the road . Accidents involving trucks are more deadly.
Aggressive driving plays a major role when it comes to an accident event on the road. Not only in publicized incidents of road rage but in a large number of fatal highway collisions.
The definition of aggressive driving according to The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NTHSA) is - "an individual commits a combination of moving traffic offenses so as to endanger other persons or property."
Yes! There is:
Aggressive driving is a behavior that is dangerous for every participant on the road.
Road rage is most of the time an emotional reaction at the moment. You can prevent it by following these simple tips.
Who exactly can we qualify as an aggressive driver?
Most of the time men between the ages of 18 and 26 are showing aggressive behavior on the road. Also, the number of aggressive women drivers is also increasing. There is also a general increase in women on the roadways when the traffic is high at a rush-hour time.
State Farm and KRC Research conducted an online survey of 1,000 U.S. drivers. According to the survey, 2/3 of the (64 percent) U.S. drivers have experienced an act of aggressive driving.
Affected by aggressive driving already, a large number of drivers say their likelihood to engage in reckless driving increases during the winter holidays.
43 percent of drivers reported that they have engaged in aggressive driving in the past three months.
32 percent of younger drivers (ages 18-29), 28 percent of middle-aged drivers (ages 30-49), and parents (30 percent) were significantly more likely to report being provoked to engage in aggressive driving around the major winter holidays compared to only 9 percent of older drivers (ages 50 and older) and non-parents (15 percent).
About half of survey respondents perceive men and women to be equally courteous when driving. When it comes to aggressive driving, however, the majority (54 percent) of drivers cite men as the most likely culprits of aggressive driving. Only one in 10 women are more likely to engage in aggressive driving. The remaining 37 percent of drivers reported men and women to be equal when it comes to aggressive driving.
The top situations most likely to make drivers aggressive are:
Traffic jams (63 percent)
Running late (55 percent)
Road closures or construction (47 percent)
According to the National highway traffic safety administration speeding is one of the main factors for aggressive driving accidents.
For every third car accident speeding is the main reason behind it. In 2017, speeding was a contributing factor in 26% of all traffic fatalities.
Speed-related crashes cost the tax payer an estimated $40 billion per year.
Speed is a factor in many crashes because of the physical forces at work. It takes longer to stop a speeding vehicle. Speed prevents the driver's ability to detect dangerous situations.
The IIHS reports that crash severity is directly related to speed. If the speed of the vehicle increases by 50 percent the crash damage will be double. The increased force is the reason for severe injuries and fatalities. Seat belts, airbags, and child safety seats are less effective at high rates of speed.
Speed limits are being used for the safety of every participant on the road. You need to always take into consideration the weather conditions and adjust your speed. By doing so you prevent accidents from happening and you keep every driver around you safe.
NHTSA created guides and toolkits to help spread the message about safe driving. Tips on what you can do if you encounter an aggressive driver on the road are also included.
According to another research conducted by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, millions of drivers engaged in the following angry and aggressive behaviors during the previous year, including:
Purposefully tailgating: 51 percent (104 million drivers)
Yelling at another driver: 47 percent (95 million drivers)
Honking to show annoyance or anger: 45 percent (91 million drivers)
Making angry gestures: 33 percent (67 million drivers)
Trying to block another vehicle from changing lanes: 24 percent (49 million drivers)
Cutting off another vehicle on purpose: 12 percent (24 million drivers)
Getting out of the vehicle to confront another driver: 4 percent (8 million drivers)
Bumping or ramming another vehicle on purpose: 3 percent (6 million drivers)
Dangerous driving is on the rise-as you as any driver has noticed in the last years. The factors that are contributing are:
Longer commute times,
Increase in congested roads
General decrease cultural empathy.
According to the NHTSA, traffic fatalities and injuries due to road rage incident could increase by 50% between 1996 and 2020. There are a lot of accidents that are not reported. This brings us to the conclusion that aggression is even higher.
This increase in aggressive driving is no more just data from a statistics report. It's deadly. The American Automobile Association (AAA) estimates that 56% of accidents involve aggressive driving. One study found more than half of all fatal crashes involved unsafe driving behaviors.
Cutting-off. When you are going to merge, make sure that you leave a lot of room. Do not forget to use turn signals before making your move. In case someone cuts you off, give them the appropriate space to merge.
Driving slowly in the left lane. In some cases, you will be driving at the speed limit in the left lane. There will be vehicles that will want to pass you. Make a maneuver to the right lane and let them by.
Tailgating. Make sure that you have at least two seconds between you and the car ahead. If you see that the car in front of you is driving slowly and you can't pass, try to leave more space between the two vehicles. The headlights of the car behind you should be always visible in your rear-view mirror.
Gestures. If you see a reckless driver avoid gestures as much as possible. Keep your hands on the steering wheel and drive calmly.
Be cautious and courteous. Try to avoid using your horn. Always use your turn signals and allow drivers to merge.
Don't engage. Do not let the anger of the other driver affect you. Try to stay calm and assess the situation and act accordingly.
Steer clear. If you see an angry driver on the road make sure you leave them plenty of room. If the other driver tries to intimidate you try to make the distance between you as big as possible. Do not follow them or try to engage in a physical brawl.
Avoid eye contact. Eye contact can be a trigger for the angry driver on the road. Avoid it as much as possible. If they start to follow you try to call the police and drive to a place where there are plenty of people. Do not get out of your car and do not drive home!
Adjust your attitude and slow down. Always take a deep breath and try to adjust your attitude when you are behind the wheel. Always be positive while on the road and give yourself extra time to get to your destination.
How to put a stop to aggressive driving?
Being the fleet manager you have to pay close attention to how aggressive driving is influencing your drivers. Observing how the drivers' behavior is changing when they are exposed to road aggression and how they are reacting. You need to intervene in a timely matter to prevent the deadly consequences of aggressive driving.
We can't stop aggressive driving as a whole. But we need to learn how to raise awareness among drivers. encourage them to prevent aggressive driving as much as possible. Helping our drivers while they are on the road should be a top priority.
By having an efficient preventative maintenance program we increase safety and efficiency. We reduce the chances of equipment breakdown. Logiflex role is to make sure that our fleet is ready for the road.
A strong vehicle maintenance program is at the core of every transportation business. Maintaining your fleet can ensure you have not only a safe but secure drive on the road.
Preventative maintenance is a proactive approach to maintaining fleet assets. The main task is to keep your fleet running with minimal unplanned downtime.
When it comes to preventative maintenance it is important to follow the manufacturer's instructions. Analyzed by the manufacturers' strategists the vehicle parts have a set time when they can work properly. It is of utmost importance that we change filters, coolants, oil, tires, etc. on time. That way we avoid that part getting broken on the road.
The tech world is changing at rapid speed. By using the latest and most efficient technologies on the market we are offering the best service possible. Technology has an important role when it comes to preventative maintenance. Below are some recommendations on how you can improve your workflow:
A successful preventive maintenance program makes sure that your vehicle is in a good operating state. It has many benefits like:
Preparation leads to success. By preparing your truck for the road the chances are that you are going to have a successful journey.
You have seen the bad driving habits so many times if you stay on the road for a longer period.
The truck industry is like a living organism that keeps the USA economy on the move. You always think that while you are on the road most professional drivers will know what they are doing. Some of them have bad driving habits that we will explore.
So what exactly are these bad driving habits that we find amongst the truck drivers? Where do they come from, and how we can prevent them?
The actual truck size is not the problem. It is the driver that did not get their license properly and they did not receive adequate training. A truck driver needs to pay more attention when they are driving a bigger vehicle. If they did not get the proper defensive driving skills the vehicle size will play little to no role if an accident happens. The younger drivers start with smaller size trucks. Once they become confided in their driving ability and they later move on to bigger size vehicle.
Defensive driver training - should be a prerequisite before receiving a Code EC or C1 license. Drivers should pass the existing K53 first. After that, they need to drive a Code B for at least 3 years crash-free. Next is to undergo Defensive driver training before issuing their heavy-duty driver's license. Companies need to set in place effective testing to determine driver skills. If needed assigning improvement courses is the proper course of action. They should include - Provide embedded knowledge training and effective Defensive Driver Training. The first one improves understanding of the truck. The second one improves understanding of the road.
© 2018 Logiflex Inc
Buy vs Lease Truck is one important decision future owner-operators must take. Both options offer benefits as well as drawbacks. There are many different...
Your winter truck maintenance is something that you need to take care of every winter season. Maintaining your truck during the winter and making...
Let's be real. We all know that the average truck driver runs ridiculous amounts of miles. But how long can a truck driver drive...
Pilot Flying J 2020 – 2021 Winterization Procedures Winterization Procedures for Travel Center locations except in Illinois and Iowa: Pilot Flying J will begin...
Aggressive driving is an event that in recent years we see quite often on the U.S roads. We've all experienced it in different forms....
By having an efficient preventative maintenance program we increase safety and efficiency. We reduce the chances of equipment breakdown. Logiflex role is to make...