Are your drivers keeping fleet maintenance in mind for long journeys?

While vehicles are often simple to operate, they depend on a large number of complicated parts all functioning in harmony to ensure they remain in perfect working order. 

This means that active fleet maintenance is key to reducing costs and keeping drivers and vehicles safe out on the road. Although your staff don't have to be qualified mechanics to keep a car running, a little bit of automotive know how can go a long way to keeping your vehicles in shape. 

Along with regular checks, employees should be encouraged to inspect a number of important features of their vehicle before setting out on particularly long journeys. 

Are people performing maintenance checks?

A new survey from tyre manufacturer Bridgestone in the US found that an amazing 94 per cent of the people it surveyed will perform some sort of vehicle inspection before embarking on a road trip. 

While this is a great result overall, it doesn't mean that 94 per cent of these drivers are covering all the bases when carrying out these checks. 

According to Bridgestone, the most common part of a vehicle that is inspected before extended drives is the fluid levels, with nearly three-quarters (75 per cent) ensuring these are correct before setting off. 

On top of this, 70 per cent test their tyre pressures and just 59 per cent inspect oil levels before embarking on long journeys. 

Why are maintenance checks so crucial?

Unfortunately for drivers, no vehicle can run smoothly without this sort of regular attention. Failing to keep track of this basic maintenance will cost money and could reduce the life span of the vehicle in question. 

One of the most important aspects of a vehicle to check both regularly and before long journeys is the oil level, as it is charged with keeping the engine properly lubricated to avoid causing lasting damage. Thankfully, it's a simple test for even the most inexperienced driver to manage. All you need to do is pull out the dipstick and check the measurements. Simple.

Other fluids are just as important, especially the level of coolant in the radiator. If this gets low or there is a leak, it can cause the engine to overheat. The worst case scenario is that the headgasket blows, which can write off the whole engine if you're unlucky.

With the rise of green cars - electric options in particular - maintenance checks should get significantly easier. For example, the Tesla Model S has minimal moving parts, meaning there's less to maintain and less to go wrong.