Maintaining a heavy-duty truck can be a daunting task, especially when it comes to determining when a tune-up is necessary. The age, make, and model of the truck plays a significant role in determining the frequency of tune-ups, with older heavy-duty trucks requiring more frequent maintenance appointments, while modern heavy-duty rigs require maintenance every 25,000 to 100,000 miles.
Regardless of the age or model of your truck, an expert truck repair shop can assist in keeping it running at its best — whether it’s through a strict truck PM program, regular tune-ups, or consultation. In this blog post, we’ll be taking a look at five indications that your heavy-duty truck may need an engine tune-up.
One of the most common indicators that your truck may need a tune-up is a decline in fuel efficiency. Even if you’ve equipped a high-tech MPG gauge on your dashboard, or you’ve opted to rely on age-old fuel economy calculations, it can be difficult to keep track of fuel economy. But, when you're driving hundreds of miles week after week, you should notice a significant drop in fuel efficiency when you need to get more frequent refuels.
This can be caused by a number of factors, including the performance of the engine, the efficiency of the aftertreatment system, the overall driving conditions of your routes, and even your driving habits. It is important to note that misaligned tires can also significantly reduce the fuel economy of your truck and may be a sign of more serious driveline issues. By scheduling regular tune-ups based on the timetable described above, you can prevent future repairs and maintain optimal fuel efficiency.
Another indication that your truck may need a tune-up is the presence of unusual or new sounds while driving. These sounds can be caused by a number of factors, including loose or damaged components, and can range from a shrieking nose to a thumping sound coming from the engine bay. While some of these sounds may be a byproduct of your engine, they can also be a major sign that your truck has a new issue. To keep everything moving, connected, and functioning properly, it’s important you get your engine checked frequently. Any damaged or loose pieces may result in sounds that will get louder and worse over time.
Maintaining safe driving conditions is crucial, and your truck's brakes play a significant role in this. As the brakes are used over time, they will eventually deteriorate, and you may not know when you will need that additional stopping power. This is why it is essential to schedule regular tune-ups to determine if brake maintenance is necessary. By getting your truck tuned up on a regular basis, you can ensure that your brakes are always in optimal condition, reducing the risk of accidents and costly repairs.
Warning lights are practically your truck's way of asking for a tune-up, and it is essential to take them seriously. Ignoring warning lights, such as the check engine light, low coolant level light, tire pressure warning signal, or alternator check light, will lead to expensive repairs down the line. If you notice any warning lights flashing on your dashboard, it is recommended that you schedule a tune-up as soon as possible to prevent future problems.
If your truck is having trouble starting, it may be an indication that your engine is in need of a tune-up. This can be caused by a number of factors, including malfunctioning spark plugs, and can be prevented by being proactive about your tune-up program. By scheduling regular tune-ups through your PM program, you can reduce the amount of time and money spent with your technician and avoid the discomfort of costly repairs.
In conclusion, maintaining a heavy-duty truck can be a daunting task, but by being aware of the five indicators discussed above, you can ensure your truck is always running at its best. Whether it's a decline in fuel efficiency, strange or new sounds, a reduction in braking power, disregarding signal lights, or an engine that won't start, these are all signs that your truck may need a tune-up.
Keep in mind that the age and model of your truck can play a significant role in determining the frequency of tune-ups. Despite this, regardless of the age or model of your truck, an expert truck repair shop with high-quality engine diagnostics and engine repair services can assist in detecting issues before they become a dent in your wallet. By scheduling regular tune-ups, you can prevent future problems and ensure that your truck is always in optimal condition. Regular maintenance can help you to save money by avoiding costly repairs and it can extend the life of your truck.