A Guide to Winterizing Your Fleet

Winter road with snow Ariel view

We don’t have to tell you that the winters in our neck of the woods can be hard on a vehicle! Our service department wants you to know how to winterize your fleet because this isn’t the kind of task that you can put off! Fortunately, winterizing your fleet is not incredibly complicated. Follow the guide below to preserve your fleet vehicles in winter.

How to Winterize Your Fleet

Properly maintaining your fleet vehicles in winter can be a challenge, especially in the area near Northern Chicago and Milwaukee. Follow the guide below on winterizing your fleet to keep your vehicles running in harsh weather:

  • Use the right fuel (diesel trucks). Not all diesel fuels are created equal, especially when it comes to cold weather. Diesel fuel that has a low Cetane rating can gel in freezing temperatures. So, use a fuel with a high Cetane rating in your fleet vehicles during Winter. You will also want to check your water separator daily. Diesel fuel additives can help to prevent freezing and make your winters that much easier.
  • Check your tires. Did you know that drops in temperature can cause your tires’ air pressure to drop as well? Check your air pressure more regularly in cold weather. You will also want to make sure your fleet is equipped with winter tires. Milwaukee roads can be pretty rough during the winter, and your trucks should have tires designed for those conditions.
  • Use the right viscosity of oil. Oil that works well in most weather can be too thick for winter weather. So, check your owner’s manual to find out what kind of viscosity your oil should offer for winter temperatures.
  • Heat your engine with an electrical heater block (diesel trucks). Do this as the vehicle is parked. Diesel engines need higher cylinder temperatures in order to start.
  • Check your batteries. Winters are especially hard on batteries. If your batteries are near the end of their lives, it would be good to change them before the onset of winter.
  • Replace worn wiper blades. Windshield wipers are especially important during the winter. If they are cracked or show any signs of wear, replace them with new blades.
  • Check your coolant system. Do you have the right coolant for freezing weather? What about the radiator, hoses, belts, and filters? Have all of these checked before winter starts.
  • Check your lights. Headlights, brake lights, and signal lights need to be very visible during bad weather. Check all of the lights on your vehicles and replace any dead bulbs.
  • Check your brakes. Do we need to explain the importance of brakes during the winter? It’s better to check them before winter sets in than to have problems sometime after.
  • Schedule a winter inspection. Our service team would be happy to look over your vehicle(s) and let you know if we notice any issues that might cause trouble during the winter.
  • Top off your fluids. Fluids are especially important during cold weather. This includes engine coolants, power steering, brake, windshield washer and battery fluids. Checking all of your levels is an important part of winterizing your fleet.

Winterizing your fleet vehicles can help to make the colder months much easier, but it’s still a good idea to make sure that you and your drivers are prepared for emergencies. Find out what to pack in a winter car emergency kit with our team.

Trust Your Fleet with the Experts at Lynch Truck Center

If you enjoyed this guide, check out our other tips and advice. And schedule an appointment with our service department if you need help winterizing your fleet. We’re just down the road from Racine, so drop by or contact us today?

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