As the age of a vehicle increases, the maintenance costs and depreciation also increase significantly. This replacement journey becomes a hectic job for the rookie fleet managers on the field.
Since it is your responsibility as a fleet manager to address the inefficiencies of an old vehicle, introducing or revamping your fleet vehicle replacement strategy can save you all the hassle.
This article provides a complete guide to vehicle replacement cycles that help you operate your fleet as smoothly as possible.
Why Does Your Fleet Need Vehicle Replacement Cycles?
Regardless of the method you use to procure vehicles, optimization is necessary for understanding the nuances of your fleet life cycle and thus make an appropriate decision in repairs and upkeep.
Here’s what optimized replacement cycles for your fleet offer your business in the long run:
Reduced Downtime And Repair Costs
Forward-thinking companies are beginning to take notice of fleet replacement cycles to lower their preventative maintenance costs and increase their resale values.
If you would like to replace a few older vehicles in your fleet, following a fixed timeline will ensure you do so before the truck stalls or undergoes breakdowns out of warranty.
Replacing older trucks before major problems arise also decreases losses due to downtime, thereby improving efficiencies across fleet operations.
Fleet managers understand that modern vehicles will enable truckers to be more productive. The technological improvements and overall comfort of the latest models will drive fleet operators to perform better at work.
Thus, by determining a proper cycle for fleet management, managers can offer employees the ideal support they anticipate and deserve, thus keeping productivity levels high.
Extending your fleet’s life cycle beyond their capacity and quietly suffering through their deteriorating efficiencies means missing out on safer vehicles for your drivers.
Getting trucks with more advanced safety features like forward-collision warning systems and automatic emergency braking keeps your drivers happy and your assets secure.
Lower Fuel Use
Excessive fuel use is not a desirable thing for fleet organizations: it piles on to the company’s operating expenses and also harms the environment.
Vehicle replacement cycles ensure that older vehicles consuming too much gasoline and not offering peak performance are replaced by new vehicles with better miles per gallon.
How To Finalize The Best Vehicle Replacement Strategy
Determining a replacement cycle for your fleet could lead to long-term savings. However, designing a detailed vehicle replacement strategy can be both daunting and overwhelming.
If you have lost all hope of seeking out the most beneficial replacement cycle for your fleet and don’t know where to start, we’ve got you covered with these simple tips.
Look At Vehicle Specifics
Start by looking at the typical categories: the number of years you’ve owned the truck, the mileage, monthly/annual repair costs, and the model of the vehicle.
Factor in extras like installing driver cams and custom-made features. These accessories add to your replacement costs should you need to install them in your new vehicle, too.
Turn To Fleet Tracking Devices
If you haven’t already, you should get started on fleet tracking and telematics by installing GPS devices.
The data from these devices can give you key insights into vehicle performance and point towards specific issues that may influence your final decision.
The tracking system collates and creates a simple report, so you get an overview of your vehicle’s annual maintenance expenses, fuel efficiency, compliance with inspections and safety regulations, and downtime.
Change Your Perspective
In a bid to reduce net costs, fleet managers might opt for an extended replacement cycle. They may delay buying newer models or prolong their lease terms to make the vehicle last longer.
Postponing replacement might seem like the cheaper alternative now, especially from a corporate vehicle budgeting standpoint. But interestingly, this strategy is more likely to increase your costs.
Older vehicles come with higher maintenance costs, and finding manufacturer-approved parts for outdated models is also next to impossible. Plus, these trucks may be out of warranty.
Since these factors often add to your overall fleet maintenance expenses, the winning strategy, in the long run, is to replace older trucks with newer, more efficient, and more advanced vehicles.
Vehicle Manufacturer Incentives
Speaking of financial savings, some vehicle manufacturers provide customers with incentives to get them to buy their newer products. These incentives include exclusive lease offers and discounts.
Fleet managers considering getting a new vehicle should take advantage of these aggressive deals to give their fleet a much-needed facelift. Competitive pricing can prove beneficial for your replacement strategy.
Tune Into The Needs Of Your Business
Apart from maintenance costs, it is prudent to create your vehicle replacement policies with the requirements of your business in mind.
If you’ve noticed that some vehicles in your fleet are more often than not left unutilized, chances are you don’t need as many trucks to keep your fleet operations running smoothly.
This stands in contrast to fleets that have too few vehicles and might be overworking their trucks (and drivers) to the point of impacting their resale value down the line.
Even if you’re satisfied with your current vehicle distribution, you may need a bigger fleet size one day, so consider your unique business needs and determine replacement cycles accordingly.
Remember: an older, inefficient fleet merely undermines the sacrifices you’ve made up until this point to keep your company at the vanguard and lower its operating costs.
Devising a replacement cycle strategy that complies with your business and investing in competent vehicles is the way to grow your fleet business as quickly as possible.
Managers can use fleet management software to determine the performance and utility of their existing vehicles and analyze which strategy offers the best returns on investment.
It’s best to update yourself with the right knowledge of newer truck models, competitive pricing and incentives, and technology systems that can give you access to a robust and productive fleet.
What’s the Difference Between a Service and a MOT?
If you’re new to the world of car ownership, then a lot of the terminology can be fairly confusing. It’s a common dealer tactic to offer all sorts of maintenance packages with never-ending checks and options to keep your car on the road. Not all of these are essential, and the trick is to try to see through the marketing and work out which of the checks really are essential for keeping your car on the road. The two main essential checks are the MOT and servicing, and there are important differences between the two.
Having a service done isn’t a legal requirement. It’s just the advised way of keeping your car in best condition. You don’t have to have your car serviced at a main dealer or a chain garage; you can also either do the servicing yourself or use your local independent garage. When you come to sell your car in the future however, most buyers will want to make sure that you have been looking after your car properly, and will want to see evidence such as a stamped service book. Ignoring servicing is rarely a good idea and will often cost more in the long run.
What’s Checked in a Service?
Each car will differ in what exactly needs checked during a service, and what needs replaced. Many cars also require a basic service every year, with a major service only every two or three years. Most services, whether basic or major, will include:
- Checking the brakes and replacing pads or shoes if necessary
- Draining the oil from the engine and replacing
- Replacing air filter
- General checks on condition of bodywork and engine function
- Topping up windscreen wash
- Replacing wiper blades if needed
Cost varies depending on what type of service you need. A basic service on a small car could cost as little as £75. However, if you need a big service on a brand known for being expensive on parts, it could easily run into the hundreds. The key advice is to shop around and don’t assume that your only option is the expensive main dealer’s servicing department.
Servicing might be recommended but not compulsory, but MOT checks are a wholly different matter. It’s a legal requirement that nearly every vehicle over the age of 3 has an annual check to make sure that it’s fit to be on the road. There are a few exemptions, but this doesn’t apply to most cars, vans or motorbikes on British roads. Driving an unserviced car might make you more likely to break down, but driving a car without a MOT certificate is illegal and will cost you at least £100 in a fixed penalty fine.
The MOT doesn’t involve replacing things on your car or bringing it up to scratch. It’s assumed that you’ve done all of this work before taking it into the garage for the checks. During the MOT, the inspector runs through the checklist set out by the government and checks everything from seatbelts and tyres to suspension and lighting. If your car doesn’t reach the standards set in each category, it fails. The garage may then give you the option of getting it fixed and retested. If you take your car in for its MOT knowing that, for example, it needs two new tyres, the garage will usually do this work first before the MOT test.
As the MOT is a quicker job than a service, the cost is usually less too. The price of a car MOT is capped by the government at £54.85, but many garages choose to charge less than this as a marketing tool. A MOT test usually takes about 45 minutes. You also have less flexibility over when you have your MOT done. Each MOT certificate expires on a given date, and has to be renewed before that date. When it comes to servicing, you have more flexibility over when it gets done and a few weeks before or after isn’t going to make much of a difference. Many garages will offer a reminder service to notify you when your annual service is due.
Combining MOT and Servicing
As many drivers want to have their car serviced annually, and the MOT is also done once a year, it often makes sense to try to get the work to coincide. It’s less hassle, and less time off work to take the car into the garage. Many garages know that drivers want the “one stop shop” solution for both and therefore will run special offers. As the price of a MOT is not fixed, it’s fairly common to see offers for a free or reduced price MOT when you have the car serviced at the same time. You’re in a strong negotiating position so don’t be afraid to ask if there’s anything a garage can do on the price. If you have your car serviced before it is presented for its MOT, this also ensures that your car isn’t going to fail on simple issues such as not having enough windscreen wash or a broken lightbulb. Any bigger faults will usually be picked up during the servicing so it’s usually best to ask the garage to give you ring if there’s anything they spot. You can then make the decision when and how to get things fixed, perhaps delaying the MOT test until a later date.
Tech Trends That Are Transforming the Global Automotive Industry
Over a million plug-in vehicles roam the United States today, according to Carsurance.net. In fact, there are over 20,290 public vehicle chargers in California, which outnumber the total EV charging stations in six states combined. This is not surprising given that many consumers are looking for alternative solutions to diesel-powered vehicles.
Solar Powered Vehicles
The concept of integrating solar panels on the roof of a vehicle is not new, but its technological impact is minimal. Nowadays, you can ride vehicles that get some extra juice from the sun, such as the Karma Revero and Toyota Prius. You can find out more about these vehicles by checking out reviews on their reliability, quality, and driver experience from reputable sources. However, things will likely change as manufacturing companies are developing sunlight-capturing tech that is not only efficient but cost-effective too.
Monitoring Drivers With Biometrics
Avatar-inspired vehicles will take some time before it becomes road-worthy, but some of its key tech may debut soon like biometrics. Biometrics will help vehicles monitor drivers and passengers long before full automation becomes a reality. This tech will help drivers stay focused on the road, enhance safety mechanisms in the vehicle when a car crash occurs, and even customize infotainment too.
Laser radar is said to be the key to our self-driving future, according to Elon Musk. But the cost of this technology is too high at the moment. Laser radar works together with other sensors such as long-range radars and cameras to help cars and trucks to “see” more in the long run. The goal here is to bring down the cost of Lidar down to make it more affordable for all car companies to use on their vehicles.
Car tech trends are always something to look forward to. These technological advances help make our lives more comfortable and convenient while we are on the road. From customizing our infotainment to equipping our vehicles with affordable lidar, automating our vehicles is closer than we think.
How to Take Care of your 2020 Corvette
Keep your 2020 Corvette running smoothly and growling proudly for years to come. There’s nothing worse than rust or engine trouble with a sports car, so protect your investment and learn to protect your car from the elements. Shop for car covers, routine maintenance and learn how to care for your car cover. Don’t let your 2020 Corvette show signs of age, but keep it lovingly maintained with these products and maintenance steps.
Use an Indoor Car Cover in Your Garage
Pick up an Outdoor Cover
In emergency situations, there comes a time when your sports car must brave the elements. Thankfully, a custom outdoor car cover can shield your Corvette from rain, falling leaves, tree sap, and other contaminants. Pick up a cover that’s UV blocking so you don’t fade that beautiful paint job.
An outdoor cover isn’t a perfect solution, but it will prevent any scratches, UV damage, and light rainfall. Look for ways to keep your sports car stored indoors, particularly for long-term storage. Thankfully, this weather-resistance, breathable covers can handle the most common dangers to your paint job.
Wash and Wax Your 2020 Corvette
Routine washing and waxing protect automotive paint from wear. Washing removes dirt and contaminants that may scratch, stain or fade your paint. Waxing provides a reliable coating that is scratch, smudge and fade resistant.
In between washes, pick up a premium car duster. These handy tools don’t require water or soap and wipe off any dust or light debris that may otherwise damage your paint or diminish from the flawless look of your ride.
Get a Tune-Up and Oil Change
If you don’t drive your Corvette daily, it can be difficult to remember routine maintenance steps. Your sports care requires the same routine maintenance as your daily commuter, so be sure to keep up on changing your oil and other maintenance tasks. Stop by a reliable mechanic to ask about a tune-up or other preventative maintenance.
Check Out Your Brake Pads, Battery and Other Maintenance
Even a Corvette needs a new set of brakes once and awhile. Don’t let grinding, inefficient brakes hold your ride back, but keep up on other maintenance tasks that aren’t as common. Inspect your brakes, battery, muffler, and tires for signs of wear and pull into your trusted auto shop for a full-service repair.
Keep your Corvette Safe
Don’t wait until your sports car gets scratched and dinged before you protect it from the elements and the outdoors. Paint touch-ups and bodywork can be costly repairs, so invest in affordable Chevy Corvette car covers today to stay safe wherever you drive. Keep it covered in your garage and take an outdoor cover with you when you park at work for the ultimate in complete car protection.
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