Don’t Repair, Maintain
POSTED on September 1st, 2016 by Reza Tavassoli
The Other Side
You don’t have to be an experienced fleet manager to know that an oil change is a heck of a lot cheaper than replacing an entire engine!
So far, I’ve spent time going over reasons why having tight control over your fuel related operations is so important. I’ve also mentioned how Coencorp’s FuelZone system can provide that control. The focus has been the pumps dispensing fuel from the tank to the vehicle, but what about the other side of the transaction? Proper management of the maintenance of your fleet’s vehicles opens up a whole other world of potential savings and efficiencies.
The Need for Preventive Maintenance
If maximizing the productivity, availability and safety of your vehicles and equipment is a goal for you, then preventive maintenance sits near the top of your list of priorities. Timely maintenance will minimize costly breakdowns and repairs, and potential legal issues caused by lack of maintenance. In a proactive approach to preventive maintenance, the inspection, maintenance, and replacement of vehicle/equipment components are planned in advance and carried out based on a number of parameters, such as operating hours and mileage. In contrast, a reactive approach leaves you at the mercy of the chaos of unplanned breakdowns and the higher costs that go with them.
To err is human. This could be considered the third certainty in life, along with death and taxes. It is obvious that there is no way to never make mistakes, but when it comes to the maintenance of your fleet, it should be avoided as much as possible. A preventive maintenance system works well only when the vehicle data it’s fed is accurate and delivered in a timely manner.
When the entry of vehicle data is part of the fueling sequence, there is a tendency for operators to simply enter something like “999999” for the mileage and/or engine hours, and ignore protests from the terminal telling them that the information makes no sense. When a check engine light comes to life on a vehicle’s dashboard, rarely is the occurrence reported right away to the maintenance department. Of course, even in cases where data is input on time and as accurately as humanly possible, time is still spent checking the data and entering it in some system or another.
The point is this: for a preventive maintenance system to work its magic, it is best to have vehicle data coming directly from the diagnostics port or from the engine when there is no ECM. No middle man, no human error, no time wasted. With the hardware in place to relay vehicle data directly to the PM system, you are certain that vehicle recalls are made on time and maintenance plans provide the benefits they are intended to.
Of course, I would not just generally discuss good practices without providing the best alternative to execute them. In my next blog, I will present an overview of Coencorp’s Preventive Maintenance et DataZone modules, designed to keep your fleet in tip top shape using accurate, automatically captured vehicle data.
In the meantime, please do not hesitate to get in touch to discuss your fleet maintenance needs.
Reza Tavassoli, MBA
(866) 263-6267 ext. 205
Timely maintenance will minimize costly breakdowns and repairs, and potential legal issues caused by lack of maintenance.