3 Types of Trucks You Will See in Your New Fleet

August 2nd, 2019
3 Types of Trucks You Will See in Your New Fleet
Taking over as the owner of a trucking company can be a big step in your career.

Taking over as the owner of a trucking company can be a big step in your career. Whether you started from the bottom and worked your way to the top, or earned the trust of the company’s previous owner, one of your first duties will be to overhaul your existing truck fleet. Here is a guide to the trucks you will commonly find out on the road.

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Distracted Driving: Staying Out of Truck Accidents

July 26th, 2019

Take a minute to think about the last time you had a fender-bender or someone rear-ended you. Then think about how you felt when the other person who caused the accident tried to run away scene without stopping to exchange insurance information. While that is annoying, you wouldn’t think anything of it being dangerous. At least not at first. However, distracted driving while behind the wheel of a rig can turn out much worse.

Distracted Driving: Staying Out Truck of Accidents
However, distracted driving while behind the wheel of a rig can turn out much worse.

Why They Happen

Even short-distance trips can be frightening for inexperienced drivers. However, controlling a cargo truck is a much different experience than driving a regular passenger car. One unfortunate reality is that not every driver you meet is careful and considerate. Everyone is taught to drive as defensively as possible, but reckless drivers give everyone a bad name. Every time an accident happens, it is not automatically a driver’s fault. That’s why even experienced truck drivers need to pay attention to the road. Falling asleep or being otherwise distracted can be a danger to everybody. Turning or changing lanes can be much more challenging in these vehicles. That’s why it’s so important to exercise more caution. 

How Technology Makes A Difference

When it comes to your job as a trucker, technology can be your best friend. The difference that it makes in keeping you safer cannot be ignored. GPS systems can help you find your way, but there are ways to be smart about it. Set up your route tracker before you start moving and when you find somewhere safe to stop and pull over. You are not a machine, so be sure to get some rest when you need it. Longer trips across the country, and even a few states away, can be exhausting. Heat exhaustion can cause you to become fatigued much more quickly. Staying alert is one of the best ways to avoid any accidents that can happen.  

Traffic can be a nightmare no matter where you go. Use smartphone apps and the CB radio to keep in touch with dispatchers and other truckers to steer clear of slowdowns, jams, gridlock, and rubbernecking.

Middleton & Meads is Your ONE STOP Shop for ALL of Your Vehicle’s NEEDS.

Need to repair your truck or bus? Contact Middleton & Meads today! Middleton & Meads provides quality truck and bus repair, service, and fleet management for the Baltimore, MD area. We have over 90 years of experience in the trucking industry and will provide you with customer service like you have never experienced before! If you are interested in seeing how we can help your business, give us a call at (410) 752-5588 or visit us online today! For more articles and trucking tips, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, and LinkedIn.

3 Reasons Why Road Signs Matter So Much

July 19th, 2019

Every driver needs to obey all of the applicable road signs no matter where they go. This rule of thumb is even more important for truckers. That’s because they spend so much time in unfamiliar surroundings, and it doesn’t matter how much experience they get. Here’s a quick glance at some of the reasons why road signs are so important. Oh, the places you’ll go! 

3 Reasons Why Road Signs Matter So Much
Every driver needs to obey all of the applicable road signs no matter where they go.

Rules and Regulations 

First of all, it’s essential to stay on top of all the rules and regulations of the road. Laws are in place for a reason: to protect you as well as other motorists out on the road. You can see how high the speed limit goes, where the exits are, where you can merge, and where you can attempt to do a U-turn. Getting a ticket is something every driver would like to avoid, and the same could be said of being involved in an accident.

Potential Hazards

The weather could be different at your destination from where you set out. By following all road signs, you can be alerted to potential road hazards, whether or not mother nature is to blame. These signs should be easier to see since they are bright yellow. Slowing down for road work ahead is also crucial since it takes longer for a truck to slow down than a regular passenger vehicle. Highway signs are of particular interest since they have more information about road conditions along the next stretch of pavement. Sometimes it’s easier to keep your eyes peeled for information about road closures than it is to listen to the radio or pay attention to a smartphone app that might end up becoming an unnecessary distraction. 

Information

All drivers could use more information as they try to get to where they’re going. Keep an eye out for brown and blue signs, as these indicate where you can refuel, get something to eat, or find a place to rest when you’re tired. You’ll also be able to find the next weigh station for your cargo and get more directions in case you are lost. 

Middleton & Meads is Your ONE STOP Shop for ALL of Your Vehicle’s NEEDS.

Need to repair your truck or bus? Contact Middleton & Meads today! Middleton & Meads provides quality truck and bus repair, service, and fleet management for the Baltimore, MD area. We have over 90 years of experience in the trucking industry and will provide you with customer service like you have never experienced before! If you are interested in seeing how we can help your business, give us a call at (410) 752-5588 or visit us online today! For more articles and trucking tips, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, and LinkedIn.

 

The Components of a Diesel Engine

July 12th, 2019

The life of a trucker can be a difficult, dangerous, and lonely one. All of that time out on the road with nothing but your thoughts, the CB radio, and the GPS to keep your company can lead to many questions you might not have thought of otherwise. One of those questions boils down to how a diesel engine is supposed to work, and how it differs from a regular engine.

The Components of a Diesel Engine
One of those questions boils down to how a diesel engine is supposed to work, and how it differs from a regular engine.

The Ignition 

Putting the key in the ignition and turning it starts the engine. This step isn’t that much different than starting the engine of an ordinary passenger car. Fuel from the tank is sent into the cylinders. The fuel will behave differently depending on how hot it is outside, and it’s important to avoid overturning the key and adding undue stress to the engine’s setup. Better technology has enhanced the ignition process as well.  

The Fuel Pump 

The fuel pump is what moves diesel fuel into the engine. Attached filters clean up the fuel to keep it from clogging the engine. A tanker truck with clogged engines won’t run very well; just think of a regular car or truck that has a failing engine. Fuel filters need to be cleaned up, so be sure to include as part of your pre-trip check before starting on your next haul. 

The Delivery Tubes

Delivery tubes and rails are also key parts of any good diesel engine. These components help make sure the fuel remains pressurized enough for injection into the engine. The faster you go, the more diesel fuel you use. The main difference between a diesel engine and a non-diesel engine is that the diesel needs to be kept at much higher levels. Diesel demands 23,500 pounds of pressure, or psi, while gasoline only needs ten or fifteen pounds at most. This means that the diesel is distributed in a spray. 

Fuel Injectors, Air Cylinders, and Combustion 

Finally, don’t forget to learn all you can about fuel injectors and air cylinders. Without these components, internal combustion couldn’t work as well. If there’s no combustion, then the engine can’t provide your truck with power it needs to get you to your next destination on time. 

Middleton & Meads is Your ONE STOP Shop for ALL of Your Vehicle’s NEEDS.

Need to repair your truck or bus? Contact Middleton & Meads today! Middleton & Meads provides quality truck and bus repair, service, and fleet management for the Baltimore, MD area. We have over 90 years of experience in the trucking industry and will provide you with customer service like you have never experienced before! If you are interested in seeing how we can help your business, give us a call at (410) 752-5588 or visit us online today! For more articles and trucking tips, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, and LinkedIn.

3 Tips for Buying a Pre-Owned Truck for Your Fleet

July 5th, 2019

Whether you are an owner-operator or a senior manager in charge of procurement, getting new vehicles is always a struggle. Saving money doesn’t always mean cutting corners, though. Getting a pre-owned truck for your company fleet isn’t that much different than when you’re looking for one to use as a regular driver. But there are some tips you should be mindful of along the way. 

3 Tips for Buying a Pre-Owned Truck for Your Fleet
Getting a pre-owned truck for your company fleet isn’t that much different than when you’re looking for one to use as a regular driver.

Ask More Questions

You may have heard the expression that curiosity killed the cat. Well in this case, be curious can benefit you. Unlike the process of buying a used passenger car, you might not know the history behind the truck. How many times has it been sold in the past? What are some known technical problems that have remained even after multiple repairs? Did it use to belong to a competitor? All of these questions are some of the most important questions you can bring up while evaluating if the pre-owned truck is right for you. Ask more experienced trucking friends what advice they can give you, especially if you are still relatively new to the trucking life. You’ll increase your chances of finding a reputable dealer. 

Consider Who is Selling

The next step is to take a long look at who is selling the truck. All freightliners have different maintenance needs, fuel requirements, and in some cases, different license qualifications. Doing your own homework will prove to be an invaluable part of the process. It’s one that you won’t regret later on if you decide to pass on one truck and end up getting another one that you are happier with, only to find that the one you had planned to buy was a junker waiting to happen. Find out the real reason why the truck is expendable and is ready to go to the highest bidder. 

Look at the Truck 

Finally, you will want to inspect the truck yourself. Bring some of your fellow drivers with you; their expertise and knowledge can help you diagnose problems that you might not notice or understand. If anyone has a mechanical background, then they might be able to fix any brake problems and prevent future breakdowns before they even become a problem. 

Middleton & Meads is Your ONE STOP Shop for ALL of Your Vehicle’s NEEDS.

Need to repair your truck or bus? Contact Middleton & Meads today! Middleton & Meads provides quality truck and bus repair, service, and fleet management for the Baltimore, MD area. We have over 90 years of experience in the trucking industry and will provide you with customer service like you have never experienced before! If you are interested in seeing how we can help your business, give us a call at (410) 752-5588 or visit us online today! For more articles and trucking tips, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, and LinkedIn.

4 Tips for Staying Calm While Driving

June 28th, 2019

Driving is one of the most stressful activities that anyone who is properly licensed can ever attempt. It’s understandable if the thought of merging onto the highway makes you nervous. Even so, you need to be able to do it if your goal is to be one of the best truckers on the road. So you need to calm down and stay that way. Here’s how.

4 Tips for Staying Calm While Driving
Driving is one of the most stressful activities that anyone who is properly licensed can ever attempt.

Be Prepared

Know where you’re going. If you can avoid getting lost, this will help you cut down on the anxiety and stress you might otherwise encounter. Make sure that you get enough sleep before your next long haul. Being well-rested is important for any driver, but when you’re carrying heavy and expensive cargo, you will want to be even more cautious. You don’t want to become a danger to yourself or other drivers. Be patient and avoid doing any multitasking while you’re behind the wheel to maximize how safely you can operate your rig.

Be a Good Driver

With that in mind, do everything you can to be a good driver. Use your signal, check all of your blindspots, and move at a reasonable speed. If other drivers are rude or reckless, don’t feel compelled to retaliate by behaving the same way. Don’t tailgate, and let other drivers pass by if you need to yield for a minute or two before you can continue. Fighting fire with gasoline is not the proper way to respond when you are a responsible truck driver.

Listen to Calming Music

Listening to music is a great way to stay awake, especially on longer trips. While many other drivers could listen to loud and raucous music, sometimes you need to switch the playlist. Listen to music that can help you calm down instead of music that you would rely on to fire you up. 

Find Your Zen

Staying calm while on the road takes many different solutions – there is no one magic answer. Another way to do this is to find your bliss or whatever puts you in a relaxed mood. Try using air fresheners or essential oils that can keep you calm, cool, and collected. Lavender, vanilla, citrus, and cinnamon are just some of the scents that can help you with this. 

Middleton & Meads is Your ONE STOP Shop for ALL of Your Vehicle’s NEEDS.

Need to repair your truck or bus? Contact Middleton & Meads today! Middleton & Meads provides quality truck and bus repair, service, and fleet management for the Baltimore, MD area. We have over 90 years of experience in the trucking industry and will provide you with customer service like you have never experienced before! If you are interested in seeing how we can help your business, give us a call at (410) 752-5588 or visit us online today! For more articles and trucking tips, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, and LinkedIn.

4 Things That Can Cause Your Truck to Break Down

June 21st, 2019
4 Things That Can Cause Your Truck to Break Down
Avoid breakdowns by keeping your truck maintained!

A truck breakdown can put you behind schedule. That can stress you out and make you anxious about how you will meet your deadlines. This problem can damage your confidence, especially if you are just starting out in your trucking career. So what can cause it to happen? It’s time to find out.

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Finding a Trustworthy Truck Mechanic

June 14th, 2019
Finding a Trustworthy Truck Mechanic
Part of keeping your truck rolling along smoothly is getting maintenance done on it whenever necessary. That means you need to find a trustworthy truck mechanic.

Part of keeping your truck rolling along smoothly is getting maintenance done on it whenever necessary. That means you need to find a trustworthy truck mechanic. Here are some helpful tips for how to get it done in time for your next hauling load.

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5 Items You Should Keep in Your Truck

June 7th, 2019
5 Items You Should Keep in Your Truck
Every truck driver has some items that they keep in their truck to keep them sane during the next long haul.

Every truck driver has some items that they keep in their truck to keep them sane during the next long haul. It’s always good to be prepared in case of an emergency that happens out on the road and you can’t radio for help. Here are some of the items that you can’t be without the next time you get behind the wheel:

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Essential Maintenance Tasks for Your Truck’s Brakes

May 24th, 2019
Essential Maintenance Tasks for Your Truck’s Brakes
Brakes for big trucks are designed to eliminate as much of the risk for failure as possible when correctly maintained, there should be an almost zero chance of brake failure.

Ensuring that your truck’s brakes are well maintained is a critical step for the safety of you, your cargo, and anyone else on the road. When trucks are in an accident, the breaks are often the scapegoat, but the reality is that brake failure is almost always caused by neglect. Brakes for big trucks are designed to eliminate as much of the risk for failure as possible when correctly maintained, there should be an almost zero chance of brake failure.

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