Get Ready For Summer


Get Ready For Summer

For equipment and fleet operators, summer often means dealing with heat, dust, rain and an accelerated maintenance schedule due to increased operation. After all, the summer months are when many companies, especially construction companies, go all-out to make their year. Summer brings unique challenges for mechanics who need to keep their fleets working – here are some areas that need special attention when the weather gets hot.

Coolant

The number one source of breakdowns in summer months is overheating. The cooling system is often overlooked on hard-working vehicles. At minimum, coolant should be flushed and changed every two years and all hoses and components of the system should undergo inspection.

  • Adding additional coolant in winter will help freeze point but leaving that mix in the system will hurt cooling ability (heat transfer) in summer, possibly leading to increased run temperatures affecting other components such as engine oil, heater core, hoses and engine sensors.
  • A 50/50 ratio is standard, but consult your vehicle’s service information for optimal mix ratio.
  • In addition to boil and freeze point, mechanics should also use test strips to measure corrosion inhibitor protection, using additives if needed.
  • Regular cooling system maintenance is key - new coolant and hoses are much cheaper than replacing major engine components damaged from overheating.

Oil

Summer maintenance schedules often call for thicker viscosity engine oils to help deal with increased engine heat and engine wear.

  • Higher viscosity grade engine oils withstand heat better but increase drag on the engine.
  • Lower viscosity grade engine oils can result in increased metal-to-metal wear in extreme heat.

Refer to your equipment’s service requirements and choose engine oil that fits the specifications. Often quality synthetic oil is the best choice as they are typically more stable at extreme temperatures.

Windshield Wash

Winter means salt and road spray, but summer brings visibility challenges as well. Dead bugs, dirt, tree sap and other tough-to-clean things on the windshield can make it almost impossible to see the road. It takes a lot of windshield wash to maintain visibility so make sure reservoirs are kept full of effective windshield wash to maintain clean glass.

Keep the Shine

Keeping vehicles clean and dirt-free during busy summer schedules can be equally as challenging as winter. Your fleet is your calling card, and keeping vehicles looking their best is important.

  • An effective cleaner such as Lube-Tech’s Aqua Kleen can remove road tar and grime that collects on vehicles during summer use.
  • Vehicle wash systems are a fast and easy way to keep vehicles clean and preserve mechanical parts.
  • Regular waxing will protect paint from fading in the sun