Spring Maintenance Will Make Sure Your Truck is Operating Properly
With spring just around the corner, we can all look forward to warmer weather and better road conditions. After a winter of ice and snow in many areas, your truck likely needs to be cleaned and have some maintenance items checked. We have some easy, but essential maintenance checks for your truck in order to keep it looking great and running efficiently.
- Cleaning - Clean the outside of your truck from top to bottom. This includes underneath, to remove dirt and salt that can cause corrosion. Don’t forget the radiator and air intakes! Clean out any debris from in front of the radiator to help prevent overheating and clear the air intakes so there is proper airflow to your engine to help keep it running efficiently.
- Lights - This a good time to check all your lights including turn signals to ensure that they are working properly. If some of your lights are not working properly, check the electrical contacts which can become corroded during harsh weather and interfere with proper operation.
- Windshield Wipers - It is highly recommended that you change your windshield wiper blades after a long winter and make sure the windshield washer fluid is full as well. Visibility will be reduced by wiper blades that smear or no longer clear water efficiently. Clear visibility is one of the most critical safety factors when driving, helping prevent unnecessary accidents due to obstructed views.
- Tires - Check the air pressure on all of the tires on your truck. Properly inflated tires on any vehicle are an important safety item and should help maintain fuel mileage and maximize tire life. On the steer axle, check to make sure the tires are wearing evenly across the tread. Uneven wear may indicate the vehicle needs alignment or that there is a problem with the truck.
- Battery – Check your battery to be sure it is fully charged and in good condition. This is particularly important if you have been driving in cold temperatures all winter. If the battery is not able to hold a charge, it should be replaced. A weak battery can cause unneeded strain on the electrical system during startup, or even fail and leaving you with added expenses and downtime for road service.
- Engine Oil – High quality engine oil is the lifeblood of your engine and provides the protection it needs to run properly. Change your oil at the proper interval using the correct viscosity of Shell Rotella Heavy Duty Engine Oil for your engine. Shell Rotella® T4 Triple Protection 15W-40 is designed to provide hardworking protection that adapts to your driving conditions and Shell Rotella® T6 15W-40 Full Synthetic Heavy Duty Diesel Engine Oil is designed and formulated to provide improved* hard working protection resulting in improved: wear protection, protection against oxidation, deposit control/cleanliness, low temperature flow and corrosion control. You may also want to consider Shell Rotella® T5 10W-30 diesel engine oil with Triple Protection Plus™. The synthetic blend oil can offer fuel economy savings up to 2% compared to a conventional 15W-40, helping you stretch your budget and improve your bottom line.
* Compared to conventional and semi-synthetic Shell Rotella 15W-40 products.
- Coolant – Be sure the coolant level is correct and that you add the coolant that meets the specification for the truck to ensure that your cooling system operates properly and provides the necessary protection. Shell Rotella extended life coolant (ELC) offers complete cooling system component protection by helping to reduce water-pump failures, hard-water-scale deposits and silicate gel. When properly maintained, Shell Rotella ELC NF can provide extended life operation up to 1,200,000 miles in Class 8 over the road operation**.
** Shell Rotella® ELC Nitrite Free may be used up to 1,200,000 miles or 24,000 hours of operation in Class 8 trucks reducing maintenance costs and downtime compared to conventional, fully formulated AFCs. Requires full use of Shell Rotella® ELC Nitrite-Free 50/50 Coolant + Antifreeze in the system and proper maintenance. Proper maintenance as detailed at shell.us/coolants. Follow OEM recommendations for specified maintenance. Passenger car maintenance and other commercial application requirements vary.
- Belts, Hoses and Filters – Check belts and hoses to be sure they are not cracked or worn and replace them if necessary. Be sure your air filter is clean, as it will improve the way your engine performs and may help increase fuel economy. Change your fuel filter if necessary as it will also help increase fuel economy.
Checking all of these items yourself or having the service done at a qualified truck service facility will help keep your truck running smoothly, especially following the challenging conditions presented by the winter season. Regular maintenance can be done easily, and most times without major cost. It helps you prevent serious and costly repairs for your truck, in addition to downtime.