Posted by Fernando Correa ● Dec 24, 2018 2:02:48 PM

How To Get Your Truck Ready For Winter


The Farmer’s Almanac is predicting that winter 2019 will be “colder-than-normal…from the Continental Divide east through the Appalachians” with teeth-chattering cold expected mid-February. There is also plenty of snow on the way. Are you and your truck ready for the rough weather that is expected this winter? Here’s how you can get started right now!

Be Prepared with Supplies

Last winter there were plenty of times cars and trucks ended up being stranded in traffic jams on highways across the United States. And there is always a possibility for one reason or another that you could have a breakdown during a winter storm. If any of these things were to happen to you this winter, you will want to be prepared because your life could be at risk.

You can start stocking up now with supplies that can hold you over until help reaches you or until traffic starts moving again. In addition to your mandatory roadside emergency equipment, you should also carry:

  • Extra clothing, including gloves, snow boots, socks, coat and hat
  • Blanket or sleeping bag
  • Feet and hand warmers
  • Non-perishable high-energy food like protein bars, jerky and nuts
  • Water for drinking
  • First-aid kit
  • Flashlight, AM/FM radio and extra batteries
  • Flares and reflective clothing
  • Ice scraper and brush
  • Shovel
  • Bag of cat litter or sand for traction
  • Extra oil and anti-gel fuel additive for diesel fuel
  • Extra windshield washer fluid

Keep Up with Maintenance

When cold weather hits, there are several maintenance issues to take care of:

  • Check your coolant system. You should check your coolant level during freezing weather and watch for any leaks. Check hoses to make sure they are not brittle or soft and replace if needed. Replace any fraying or glazed belts.
  • Check your battery. Cold weather takes a toll on a battery’s cranking power. Clean your battery terminals and inspect your battery cables. Test your battery before winter hits and replace if it is over three years old.
  • Check your wiper fluid frequently. You do not want to get caught in the snow and salt without wiper fluid or frozen fluid. Use wiper fluid designed for the winter or add de-icer to your fluid when needed.
  • Inspect your windshield wipers. If your wipers are torn or showing signs of wear, replace them now. Keep an extra set in your cab in case you need to replace while you are on the road.
  • Inspect your cab and sleeper. Make sure there are no cold spots or drafts in your cab or sleeping area. If leaks are found, seal them up.
  • Inspect your air dryer. Make sure your air dryer is working and replace its filter to make sure that water does not get in and freeze in your brake lines.

Show Your Tires Some Love

The condition of your tires will play an important part in your truck’s performance this winter. Cold weather causes tires to lose pressure. You should always include checking tire pressure on all tires in your pre-trip inspection. Be alert for any tires that continually drop 20 percent below their recommended pressure setting. If this that happens, have the tire inspected because you could be at a risk for a blowout.

Invest is a set of tire chains to keep in your truck and know how and when to use them. Some states require their use. Make sure to take them off when they are not needed because you could damage your tires.

The prediction of severe winter weather means you need to be prepared. Don’t get caught off guard or wait until the last minute to prepare, get started now!



Topics: Carriers/Truckers, Trucking industry