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Scheduled Maintenance Recommendations For Your Moving Truck Fleet

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Moving Delivery Person With PM Checklist
Moving Delivery Person With PM Checklist

Preventative maintenance is the basis of a reliable maintenance program for any fleet manager, and if done right – goes beyond changing oils and fluids to include the inspection of any wearable items that can give you issues.

Moving trucks are run hard, and while it takes a concerted effort, a robust PM program allows you to schedule maintenance tasks in advance and remain up-to-date with the state of your truck fleet, and can help your team complete their work orders in a timely manner without additional costs or labor.

So today we’d like to impart the program we use to ensure that our fleet or diesel and gas-powered vehicle remain in the best possible shape for optimal ROI.

First A Word About Emergency Assistance

There are times when a preventative maintenance program, so matter how good it is, is unable to prevent an unexpected breakdown or accident. After all, the roadways are unpredictable places, so ensuring your fleet uptime means planning for these incidents as well. If you’re business is locally based moving company, make sure that every truck has at least 2 roadside assistance company numbers available on their cell phones and in the glove compartment for a local towing service provider.

National tow truck companies like AAA are ok, however a good portion of their fleet is typically comprised of small hook and tow / flat bed configurations. Most moving vans are large, so you’ll need to make sure that the trucks you reserve can accommodate medium to heavy-duty loads.

Lastly, look to negotiate a deal with your preferred towing service contractors (remember, get at least 2 in case one is unavailable), since you will likely be using them more often than a typical customer.

Your Preventative Maintenance Checklist

This list, while non-exhaustive, includes some of the basic items most vehicles require for proper functioning. Make sure to take into consideration the recommendations provided by your vehicles’ manufacturers and don’t forget to account for your company’s usage of certain vehicles in setting up preventative maintenance plans.

  • Change the engine oil and filter
  • Check, change, and fill transmission fluid
  • Check all lights, including undercarriage and frame
  • Check if the steering and suspension are in good condition
  • Check the cooling system
  • Check the seat belts, the horn, as well as auxiliary systems
  • Examine the drive shaft, CV joints, belts, and hoses
  • Examine the electrical system and braking components
  • Examine the exhaust system
  • Inspect all mirrors
  • Inspect and rotate tires, wheels, and rims
  • Inspect the engine and transmission mounts
  • Inspect the fuel system
  • Make sure the windshield wipers are working and the fluid is full
  • Repair any fluid leaks
  • Schedule and perform regular tune-ups

PM Best Practices

The most produce PM checklists have to conform to best practices. Below is a list of recommendations for establishing a preventative maintenance plan for your fleet. It’s also worth mentioning that having a plan in place for unexpected roadside service issues with a moving van can save you a lot of time, money, and labor further down the line.

Add every vehicle component to your PM checklist

When you’re determining the tasks to be included in your PM checklist, make sure you consider all vehicle components.

Larger 24′ and 26′ Truck and Trailer configurations should consider maintenance items from both tractors and trailers. If you miss a crucial part, then you risk leaving your vehicles under-maintained, which could lead to unexpected breakdowns.

Sort by necessary tasks and unnecessary ones

When you’re doing a cost analysis, ask yourself the following questions.

  • What expenses can I try to prevent?
  • Would the cost of accomplishing a given task be higher than the issue it’s going to prevent?

Sometimes, specific tasks can be unnecessary and they might end up costing you more in the long run. With that in mind, you can perform the tasks that are essential and avoid wasting resources on ineffective preventative maintenance items.

Delegate tasks

Delegating tasks is just as important as identifying those mandatory ones. Some tasks can be managed by your drivers while others will require professional intervention. So identifying who is responsible for what will help you create a more efficient PM checklist.

Organize PMs by type and frequency

Preventative maintenance tasks usually have their own timeline. To make a checklist that is more effective, you need to organize your PMs by type and frequency.

For example, daily tasks can be sorted into one list while monthly and yearly ones can be sorted into others. You should also group tasks when they can be conducted together (like checking oil and transmission fluid).

Set up a PM checklist for pre-service inspection

Many people think that preventative maintenance is performed over the lifespan of each vehicle. However, it’s also essential to examine vehicles, whether they’re new or used when they first get to your lot.

So establishing a pre-service checklist is vital because it can allow you to identify and resolve any issues in the vehicles before they emerge on the road. This will also give you the chance to document essential data about the vehicles, which will make it easier to order any replacements further down the line.

When To Hire A Pro For Car Transportation

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car shipping
Transportation of new cars on a trailer with a truck for delivery to dealers

When you ask people how they take their car when they relocated, most will answer that they just drove them. This is the simplest way to do it because your car is meant to help you go through distances.

But did you know that you can have your car shipped instead of just driving them? You might be shaking your head because why would pay someone to move your car when you can simply drive it? That’s a good argument, but what if you have multiple cars or are moving to another state? Would you still drive your car to your destination?

Sometimes, simply driving your car to where you are relocating isn’t the best option. It would be better to have them transported. Here are the most common scenarios when it would be better to have your car transported…

Military Relocation

Most military personnel are frequent movers because it is required for their service. The move can already be a stressful scenario for the whole family. Then add the responsibility of having to drive your car for long periods just to move it.

Having your car shipped can lessen the stressful scenario of your relocation. Contrary to what many people believe, there are many companies that offer affordable auto transport services across states.

Winter Relocation

Some people just can’t stand the cold due to the winter season especially those up North. If you have the lifestyle of seeking a warmer place during the cold winter months, you might choose to spend them down south. Why not have your car shipped instead of driving your car? This will save you time and energy so you can better enjoy your southern home for the winter.

If you’re leaving the north late and winter weather may have already started to take over, the roads may pose dangerous hazards. Having your car shipped will be a safer way to go to your Southern home. It prevents you from being at risk of such hazards and you can make sure your car arrives safe and fast.

Pro-Tip

Many local towing companies in your area offer this type of service in your area and are typically more affordable that full-service covered auto transporters. If the transportation route is domestic (United States), make sure that the auto transport, or towing company is licensed and insured in the states being traveled for long distance towing option.

College Move

If one of your children is moving for college, it can be challenging to have time off your work schedule just to assist your child with moving his or her vehicle. A better way to do that is just to have the car shipped.

In that way, you can both fly to the school to get your child settled without the hassle of driving their car. This saves you and your child time and stress.

An Out-Of-State Car Purchase

When you’ve spotted the car of your dreams, you’d make sure to get it even if it is out-of-state. However, if you do not have time to go pick it up and drive it home, shipping it is the best option. Sometimes, it may also not be in the best shape for long drives. It may be your project and could require work done before you can fully trust it for long drives. For safety purposes, just have the car shipped.

Participating In A Car Show

Car shows are awesome, you get to see different people flash their vehicles, mostly in pristine condition.

However, driving them to the event should be a resounding “No”.  Why?

Because they could get damaged along the way.  Additionally having your show car transported reduces value-killing miles on the vehicles, mostly in enclosed containers, would prevent the car’s exposure and risk of damage due to the added protection.

Job Relocation

Sometimes, moving up the career ladder would also require you to move across states. It is possible that your company will require you to start work immediately. If you live in another state, it could take days for you to drive your vehicle to your new job.

The best thing to do would be to fly there and leave your car in the hands of reliable auto transporters.

Vacationing

One of the best ways to get the most out of your vacation is to explore different sites with your car. Public transport may not be ideal but you don’t have to drive your car for miles just to have the opportunity to use it on your vacation.

Having it transported is best if you leave a far distance away from where you want to take your vacation. This can save you expenses, food and lodging if you take your vehicle with you for the long drive. Furthermore, having your car shipped can even give you an extra day or two at the place where you want to take your vacation.
Multiple Vehicle Transport

When you are relocating to a new home and you own multiple cars, it will be a waste of time having to go back and forth to drive your vehicles. A car transport provider can move all your vehicles at once. There are huge trucks that could handle multiple vehicles so you’ll know they’ll all reach you safely.

Moving With Ergonomics In Mind

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Moving Company Basics
Moving Company Basics

Moving jobs often come part-and-parcel with a combination of repetitive tasks, tasks that require heavy weights, and / or awkward bodily positions.  Over time these tasks can do lasting harm on a human body.

That’s why in order to stay in-business – and to keep your employees free from injury – there are some required ergonomically designed products that a any successful moving company needs to have at the ready.

But what do we mean when we say “Ergonomic”?

As defined by Collins English Dictionary, the word ergonomic is associated with a product or process that is, “designed to minimize physical effort and discomfort, and hence maximize efficiency”

So today we wanted to take some time to identify some key ergonomically-minded products that any moving company should have.

Moving dollies

Dollies are a professional mover’s best friend and for good reason! Not only do they save a lot of time, but they also prevent accidents and protect you from getting injured when lifting and carrying heavy items like appliances, furniture, and boxes. The utility dolly is L-shaped and has a carrying capacity of 600lbs while the furniture dolly has a large flat base, four swivel wheels, and comes with a carrying capacity of 1000lbs.

The heavy-duty metal ones usually cost around $200 while the wooden ones with no handles cost anywhere from $20 to $40. For most moves, a wooden platform will suffice, though if you need a sizable aluminum or steel dolly, you can rent one for as low as $10.

Moving Van

While it might seem obvious, an ergonomically-designed moving van can make all the difference when it comes to ensuring employee safety.

While moving vans come in all shapes and sizes, at the bare minimum, the rear covered container should supply integrated straps for hold-downs in addition to places to store your dollies, moving blankets, and boxes. and moving equipment.

As part of your business standard operating process, a moving van should never be overloaded, and should provide enough walking space for workers to walk a normal gate while inside the moving container.

Additionally, a moving van should supply at least, one moving ledge at waist height for heavier, smaller items so that workers are required to bend down to lift.

Furniture sliders

The complete list of ergonomic products you need to has as a mover continues with furniture sliders. These are usually made from plastic or hard rubber and allow you to move heavy pieces of furniture very easily. Moreover, they also protect the floors from any damages like scratches and dents since the furniture slides effortlessly across any space.

When getting sliders, make sure to check which type of flooring they’re designed for, whether it’s wood, carpet, tiling, or linoleum.

Though some sliders can be used on different floors which adds to their functionality and versatility. Prices vary depending on a number of aspects but you can expect to pay $10 to $20 for a pack of 4 furniture sliders.

Moving blankets and pads

Moving blankets and quilted pads are also a must for a hassle-free moving experience. They’re often used to wrap and protect the furniture from any scratches and dents while the items are being put into storage. Not only that but they also preserve delicate surfaces from moisture and dirt.

These are a good investment because you can expect to use and reuse them for a long time, especially since they’re made from thick non-woven fabric that is highly durable. The process is very simple, all you need to do is wrap the blankets around furniture and appliances then use tape to keep them secure and in place. A pack of 12 high-quality moving blankets is usually around $70 to $90.

Moving straps and rope

Straps and ropes are essential to fasten items to the dolly and keep them secure while they’re being loaded into the moving truck. There are numerous options for straps that are currently available in the market. For instance, the shoulder strap requires that two people do the lifting and consists of a moving strap and two harnesses.

There’s the forearm forklift (around $25) which is basically the same as the shoulder strap except the harness is attached to the forearms instead of the back and shoulders. In addition to that, there’s the elastic strap ($10 for a pack of 12) for securing heavy appliances and the ratchet tie-down strap (about $25) used for securing big items in the moving vehicle during transportation.

Other moving “must’s”

protecting gloves are also very useful and will help protect your hands from injuries and accidents. Moreover, a toolbox containing all the essentials can be very convenient, things like a measuring tape, a flashlight, a pair of scissors, a utility knife, screwdrivers, pliers, a hammer, etc.

In addition to the moving van, you should also consider getting cardboard boxes of different sizes for storing all the items you will be required to move. This will only cost you around $200 and it will make you look a lot more professional to clients from the very start.

Effective Ways To Reduce Moving Costs

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Couple Planning And Packing For Upcoming Move
Couple Planning And Packing For Upcoming Move

While there are some that prefer the DIY approach of moving, most people prefer to avoid the hassle which includes of renting the right-sized truck, loading and unload large furniture, and driving – sometimes long distance – with all your earthly possessions.

Facts To Know Before Moving To North Carolina

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Rolling Appalachian Hills In North Carolina
Rolling Appalachian Hills In North Carolina

Are you considering making the move to North Carolina?

Well you’re not alone, in fact thanks to it’s mild weather, abundant greenery, top colleges, and a thriving job market North Carolina was the 3rd most popular destination for in-bound migration right behind Washington State and Idaho according to the latest Census data.

Pandemic Exodus: Moving Companies Turn Customers Away As People Leave Tri-State In Record Numbers

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MovingTruck - New York City

Originally posted on Tuesday, August 25, 2020 9:10AM on WABC News New York

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) — It’s a sad reality during the pandemic: People are leaving New York City in record numbers, and moving companies are so busy they are even turning people away.

Top Trends That Changed the Moving Industry

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Moving Industry

Like any type of business, the moving industry is always adapting and changing to meet customer needs – and usually for the better.

Although the service of moving things from point A to Point-B may seem simple enough, the truth is: customers still view moving as a pain-in-the-butt, so anything the moving industry can do to improve this experience is likely to win more business, and beat out the competition.