A quick guide to fleet vehicle maintenance

Whether you run two vehicles or more, they will need to be maintained on a regular basis. Effective fleet maintenance reduces downtime by keeping vehicles roadworthy.

Do all fleet vehicles need maintenance?

Ultimately, yes. All cars and vans eventually become subject to general wear and tear. Frequent use means this happens much more quickly.

Some work on vehicles is impossible to schedule. These are the unexpected faults that all motorists encounter at some point. To counter this, preventative maintenance actions can be taken.

How much does fleet vehicle maintenance cost?

This largely depends on the extent of the maintenance work needed.

Another factor in fleet maintenance costs is whether the cars and vans fall into the ‘budget’ or ‘luxury’ bracket. Parts for more expensive models will likewise cost more to source. The amount you pay for maintenance can be reduced by selecting more cost-effective vehicles for your fleet.

External maintenance

Your fleet represents your business, so maintaining the professional appearance of each vehicle should be a priority. Inspect models regularly for windscreen cracks, paintwork chips, scrapes and scuffs.

Make sure all checks are from top to bottom. Regular tyre replacements are a legal requirement. The minimum tread on your tyres must be 1.6mm deep, cover the full circumference and at least 75 percent of the width.

Internal maintenance

A full vehicle health check will determine if there are any immediate issues. Discovering a fault early is likely to reduce the amount of work needed to fix it.

Preventative maintenance

As well as using manufacturer-set maintenance schedules, there are advantages to carrying out maintenance before it’s technically needed.

Check, replace and top up the fluids in your fleet vehicles regularly – including the oil. The owner’s manual should guide you on how often fluids need changing.

Other key components to check frequently:

  • battery
  • spark plugs
  • windscreen wipers
  • light bulbs

Briefing drivers on good practice could also be beneficial. Certain driving styles are more likely to lead to wear on the brake pads, gearstick, suspension, and even the engine.

Repairs, replacements and disposal

As an authorised representative for several manufacturers, we always advise that replacements are completed with genuine parts.

Fluids and chemicals should be disposed of properly and safely. This includes antifreeze, brake fluid, and solvents used to maintain the paintwork.

How can fleets be maintained more effectively?

If your vehicle fleet is large enough, consider establishing a rotation. Having the ability to send cars in for maintenance without creating downtime is a considerable advantage. This also spreads out the effects of wear and tear, preventing reliance on any one vehicle.

Affordable, quality fleet solutions are always available at Lipscomb. We provide competitive deals, and maintain cars and vans to manufacturer standards. Moreover, if you choose to purchase your business vehicle through Business Contract Hire (BCH), we can quote to include maintenance for your vehicle to be included in the monthly contract hire payment.

Come to one of our dealerships in Maidstone, Canterbury or Ashworth to find out more.