Maintenance on farm vehicles is often overlooked
A farm truck is often one of the most valuable pieces of equipment a producer has at their disposal.
Many farm trucks are used daily and are an integral part of chores. Despite their importance, sometimes maintenance on these vehicles falls by the wayside. When caring for livestock daily, it is easy to forget that trucks need care sometimes too.
Following a few tips can make a farm truck’s performance improve and keep it on the road longer.
Perform Routine Maintenance
Producers will want to pay attention to the mileage or hours on their vehicle to know when maintenance is required. Newer truck models have warning and indicator lights to alert the user of repairs or servicing needs.
If a farm vehicle has warranties of any kind, routine maintenance will reduce the risk of invalidating warranties, which can make a big difference if a part wears out or breaks and needs replaced.
While maintenance and servicing are important year round, Mark Hanshaw, truck and trailer sales associate with Wood Motor Company, explained these tasks are especially important heading into winter as producers fire up hay trucks to feed their stock.
“Make sure it is ready to go before you need it,” he advised.
Hanshaw encouraged producers to check over the electrical systems, replace all filters, check battery cables for corrosion, check the air pressure on the tires and ensure appropriate fluid levels.
Radiators should be checked, and on older vehicles, Hanshaw recommended flushing as part of winter servicing. He also noted that rodent damage on vehicles has been a notable issue within the past couple of years. Producers will want to do a very thorough check under the hood for signs of mice, rats, and squirrels and perhaps, Hanshaw suggested, recruit a couple of barn cats.
Check Things Over
Outside of routine maintenance, a quick once-over of a farm truck a few times a week can help catch small issues before they create larger ones. Pay attention to the lights on the dash, walk around the vehicle and observe the tires, pop the hood and look for any leaks or cracks.
Try to Reduce Wear and Tear
Farm trucks are typically quite tough, but just because they can do something does not mean they should. If it is an option to avoid driving over an exceedingly rough area, or if a trailer load can be made a little lighter, do so.
Being gentler with a vehicle when possible will make it hold up better for when it is not.