When people think of trucks, they imagine tough, reliable and almost indestructible machines that can carry extremely heavy loads in any road condition (be it snowing or raining hard). Trucks are certainly good at doing all of these things, and this is also why they are so much in demand nowadays. Nevertheless, a truck still remains a vehicle – that is, a machine with a lot of moving parts, both small and big, and any of these parts can fail or give problems. A truck needs maintenance just as much as any car would.
If you are a trucker or are planning to start a career either as an independent owner/driver or contracted to a company, then it is a must that you know about some of the more common issues that plague trucks. Truckers put a very high mileage on their vehicles every year, thus putting a lot of stress on most mechanical parts as well. Even though truck parts are much more sturdy than other vehicle parts, they can give rise to issues if they are not checked and inspected properly. Below is a list of some such parts.
• Air Brakes – These are essential to be able to stop your truck in time, whether it is for emergencies or just regular slowing down. Be sure to give a thorough check to your brakes before and after completing any trip or delivery. If you notice a loss in braking performance, inspect them and replace them.
• Headlights – Most truckers are required to drive long hours, often in the night and in poor conditions as well. Due to this, it is always important to ensure that you have good road visibility in your cabin. A malfunctioning headlight can spell doom for you if the road condition is bad, and can lead to an accident as well.
• Ball Joints – Ball joints hold the wheels of your truck and even if it may be difficult to tell whether they are worn out or not, they are still an important part of your vehicle. If you are inexperienced in truck repairs, consider contacting a mechanic.
• Radiator – The radiator prevents the truck’s engine from overheating and causing various undesirable problems, including a loss of power or even detonation if the problem is unattended to. Do remember that a truck engine has an optimal operating temperature. You need to check the radiator only if the engine temperature exceeds this optimal threshold.
• Fan Clutch – A fan also helps in cooling of the truck’s engine and a defective fan clutch can hinder this process. As a result of that, your truck might start overheating when under heavy loads or in hot weather.