Winter months can be difficult on commercial vehicles. The vehicle experiences harder start-ups, the battery drains more quickly, and salt or road sludge can get into small crevices causing parts to get damaged over time. Going into the spring and summer months, maintenance is important to operate at optimal levels. Organizing a plan to monitor each part of the vehicle can help you reduce unexpected downtime in the future. To help you create a plan, we combined a list of lubricants and products to check for optimal performance.
Diesel Engine Oil
At the end of a cold season, you should evaluate the quality of your engine oil. Colder temperatures often result in thicker engine oil, placing additional strain on the battery and the engine. Sludge formation can also be a problem when we experience extremely cold winters, and your heating oil level is low. As your engine oil levels get low, the sludge that collects at the bottom can get pulled into the supply line which can result in several outcomes ranging from reduction in efficiency to shutting down your entire heating system.
Monitoring your antifreeze levels throughout the winter and at the change of seasons protects your engine and radiator, preventing overheating and potential damage. To inspect your antifreeze, test your glycol for freeze-point, test your inhibitors for the correct corrosion protection, and top-off your antifreeze to avoid air entrapment. Follow your OEM guidelines for appropriate antifreeze or coolant protection procedures. OilChek® offers a glycol test to provide an analysis of the fluid.
After months of temperature fluctuation between cold start-ups and warming your engine during your route, your oil filter may be clogged with contaminant particles and carbon dust. A clogged or dirty filter can result in premature engine wear and tear, internal engine damage, lack of engine lubrication, and loss of oil pressure.
Performing preventative maintenance can reduce your total cost of ownership by lengthening the life of the vehicle. With a quick look at the quality of lubricant to see if it needs to be replaced or topped-off and replacing your oil filter, you can be Assuring Machine Health®. U.S. Lubricants offers a wide range of commercial lubrication solutions that provide optimal performance to move the business forward.