A preventive maintenance program is the best way for fleets to guarantee uptime, reduce repair costs and lengthen asset lifespan. Managing your fleet preventive maintenance program through software automates service reminders and provides insight into future maintenance tasks.
What is a vehicle maintenance program?
A vehicle maintenance program is the processes and guidelines you use to keep your vehicles up and running, so that you can avoid on-the-job incidents and unplanned downtime. This includes regular preventive maintenance as well as any random repairs that may crop up.
5 Tips for Developing A Vehicle Maintenance Program
A strong preventive maintenance program is the first step to reducing downtime and managing a productive fleet. Whether you manage maintenance in-house or outsource to a third party, defining your preventive maintenance program keeps your fleet both proactive and productive. Here are a few ways to take your preventive maintenance program to the next level.
1. Develop a maintenance schedule
Having a schedule for routine maintenance tasks, like oil changes, tire rotations, and brake inspections can help you stay on track with OEM guidelines for maintenance without any severe interruptions to your day-to-day operations.
2. Provide training for your team
Provide training to your drivers and maintenance staff on the importance of regular maintenance and how to identify potential problems. This can help prevent breakdowns and other issues that can impact fleet performance.
3. Maintain records for vehicles
Have detailed records of all services performed, like the date of the task, technician, and any parts or materials used so you can track completion rates, costs and downtime.
4. Monitor performance
Keep track of your vehicle health and record metrics like fuel efficiency and maintenance costs so you can identify trends in your maintenance costs and make adjustments.
5. Improve processes and compliance with software
Fleet management software like Fleetio can help you automate your maintenance process, including scheduling maintenance tasks, tracking maintenance records, and generating reports.
Creating stronger vehicle maintenance programs with CMMS
Though the success of any fleet hinges on asset uptime, many fleets have trouble adhering to their preventive maintenance programs. This challenge is usually caused by an inefficient fleet management system. Fleets that still use paper processes or a fleet maintenance sheet to manage preventive maintenance often have trouble staying on top of tasks and keeping an organized system of record.
An unorganized preventive maintenance program can cause fleet vehicles to miss routine maintenance. Not only can this lead to unexpected downtime, but unplanned repairs can have negative impacts on your fleet’s bottom line.
To maximize efficiencies and streamline preventive maintenance tasks, many fleets are leveraging a fleet CMMS (computerized maintenance management system). Creating and managing preventive maintenance schedules in software allows you to set service reminders, view repair history and manage all fleet maintenance in an organized system.
Using an organized, flexible system to manage service allows you to standardize service intervals, stay in regulatory compliance and follow OEM guidelines to meet warranty standards. Instead of worrying about unplanned repair costs and trying to play catch up from unexpected downtime, fleet management software gives you peace of mind by helping you automate preventive maintenance tasks.
Set Service Reminders Based on Odometer Readings
Since fleet managers are constantly juggling tasks, some items on the to-do list can slip through the cracks. Creating service reminders for preventive maintenance tasks is the best way to ensure vehicles receive on-time service.
While service reminders can be scheduled based on calendar date or engine hour intervals, many manufacturers recommend maintenance based on odometer readings. Because of this, fleet managers need an efficient way to accurately track mileage on each vehicle.
Fleets that still use paper processes to manage maintenance often have difficulty tracking mileage and engine hour intervals. Managers only receive updates from their drivers when they return to the office. These infrequent updates often result in assets being overdue on preventive maintenance.
Fleet management software enables users to receive accurate odometer updates in real-time to trigger service reminders in their preventive maintenance program. Instead of manually tracking odometer readings and calculating when service is due, Fleetio automates these processes to help you start maintenance on time.
Operators can update odometer readings and engine hour intervals through a fleet app on their phone, or fleets can take advantage of telematics integrations to receive instant updates from their telematics device in fleet management software.
Setting service reminders allows users to keep up with their preventive maintenance program with mobile notifications. Email or push notifications are sent to managers before service is due to ensure maintenance is performed and assets stay in good condition.
Leverage eDVIR Results to Refine Your Preventive Maintenance Program
A key part of a proactive preventive maintenance program is routinely monitoring asset condition. While preventive maintenance schedules ensure your assets are receiving regular service, it’s important to regularly inspect assets to identify any underlying issues.
Results from paper vehicle inspections, like Driver Vehicle Inspection Reports (DVIR), often aren’t communicated quickly. To eliminate bottlenecks in the maintenance process, many fleets are streamlining the inspection process with electronic vehicle inspections.
Electronic vehicle inspections enable operators to conduct fast, thorough inspections on a mobile device. Results are uploaded instantly into fleet management software, alerting managers to any issues.
Fleet managers can leverage inspection results to create and assign work orders for preventive maintenance to begin quickly. By taking simple, proactive measures, you could save your fleet from countless hours of downtime and more expensive repairs.
Predict Future Preventive Maintenance Based on Service History
In addition to automating processes to streamline your preventive maintenance program, it’s important to carefully analyze your vehicle service history to monitor productivity and asset health. Tracking service history allows you to spot trends across your fleet and make the best decisions for its future.
Maintenance log software stores comprehensive service logs for all your assets making it easy to view past completed service. This information can help your maintenance team understand an asset’s past and not overlook or repeat any repairs.
Having a complete look at your fleet’s service history allows you to analyze issues across your fleet. With configurable software like Fleetio, you can sort service history by task to identify overarching issues with a certain part across assets.
Automatically recording service history also increases efficiency for fleets who outsource maintenance. Fleetio’s Maintenance Shop Integration allows fleet managers to approve maintenance electronically to speed up the repair process. All service is recorded automatically to eliminate data entry and provide better visibility into completed repairs.
Bulk Manage Preventive Maintenance Tasks with Service Programs
Preventive maintenance tasks vary across different types of assets, and creating service schedules for every vehicle in a fleet is time-consuming. To simplify the process, service programs enable users to create and manage service reminders across assets to save time and standardize their preventive maintenance programs.
How Fleetio does maintenance
With Fleetio’s service programs, you can apply a set of fleet maintenance checklists to multiple vehicles at a time. Having a way to organize service tasks and attribute them to specific assets in bulk eliminates hours of tedious data entry.
Though creating preventive maintenance programs may seem like an uphill battle, the use of Fleetio can streamline and expedite the process, so you can spend less time manually managing maintenance and more time analyzing and improving your fleet. Automating service reminders across your fleet with the help of service programs ensures your fleet remains in compliance and reduces downtime.