Regular fleet maintenance can cut costs

Ensuring the vehicles in your fleet undergo regular maintenance is not just an important step in preserving their ability to operate, but can also significantly reduce fleet costs.

However, a recent survey conducted by Autoglass and published by UK industry publication Fleet News shows a number of fleet managers are failing to keep up with adequate fleet maintenance levels.

Released on March 10, the Autoglass survey found only one-quarter (27 per cent) of the 250 fleet managers surveyed said their fleets undergo regular maintenance checks in addition to scheduled services.

This is despite the fact that more than half (54 per cent) of the reported emergency repairs are caused by general wear and tear. 

The majority (58 per cent) of fleet managers relied on only annual or recommended services to identify maintenance problems while a further 13 per cent only performed maintenance when drivers reported potential issues.

This shows that a large number of fleets and managers are potentially missing maintenance problems that could result in expensive repairs and a significant time off the road when finally discovered.

Allowing a maintenance issue to become a bigger problem can have a massive impact on fleet costs and expenses. The loss of productivity and sales resulting from having a vehicle off the road averages hundreds of dollars every day.

According to the Autoglass survey, almost a quarter (22 per cent) of the participating fleet managers reported having vehicles off the road for unscheduled repairs at least once a month. Additionally, 72 per cent claimed that on average, each vehicle in their fleet was pulled off the road for emergency repairs at least once a year.

"Regular maintenance is not just important for reducing the overall cost of running a fleet, it's also crucial for safety and to project a professional business image," Jeremy Rochfort, national sales manager at Autoglass, told Fleet News.

"However, it's striking that losing even two days of productivity per year by having a vehicle off the road can, on average, cost some fleet businesses much more than the entire annual maintenance and repair spend for that same vehicle."