Cool Runnings: Winterizing Your Construction Truck for Safety and Work

Windy snow covered roads

When you work in construction, your truck is just as essential a part of your business as your tools, suppliers and customers. When your truck is running reliably, it's easy to take this vital asset to your daily life for granted. Winter can throw a lot at your truck: cold temperatures sap your battery power, slick roads make it difficult to maintain control, deep snow or slush makes it tough to get traction, while frost heaves wreaks havoc on your suspension and salt eats away at the frame and body. How do you stay ahead of it all? Here are some tips to get your vehicle ready for everything winter can throw at it.

Chains on winter tires

  • Tire pressure: As temperature drops, so does the pressure in your tires. You'll want to increase tire pressure by 1 PSI for every 10ºF drop in temperature.
  • Tread depth, studs and chains: If your tires have marginal tread, make sure they have a bare minimum of 5/32" of tread to ensure traction. If your area regularly has significant snowfall, you may want to add studded tires or chains to ensure proper traction in bad weather.
  • Weight: Though this tends to apply more to two-wheel drive vehicles, adding weight allows your truck to bear down and get better traction in the snow. Toss a bag of sand or two in the back end to improve traction.
  • Equipment storage: The best way to keep your truck or work site equipment free from snow and ice is to store them either in a garage, warehouse, shop or under a tarp. This not only protects your equipment, it makes it easier to get it in action after a storm.
  • large mountaint of salt Salt on the roads: If you're in an area where salt is used on the roads to melt snow and ice or otherwise improve traction, you'll want to wash your vehicle at least once a week, including the undercarriage, to remove salt that can corrode the body and frame.
  • Batteries: Cold temperatures quickly cut back on what batteries can provide in terms of cranking amps to your engine, and with the greater weight and larger size of truck engines, more power is needed to get the job done. Have your battery tested if it's acting off at all.
  • Anti-freeze: The worst cold snap of the year is not the time that you want to realize your radiator doesn't have sufficient protection against freezing. Test your anti-freeze to ensure that it's able to stay fluid when it's needed.
  • Safety kit: If you end up caught out and have to pull over due to road conditions, you'll want to have at least a basic safety kit, including a reflective vest, flares, blanket, snack food and similar items to keep you going when you need it most.
  • Roads: Over the winter, frost heaves cause potholes, bumps and ridges that can wreak havoc on your suspension system. Slow down and take your time over rough patches to prevent damage from bad roads.

By getting your vehicle in shape for winter, you can ensure that it will give you reliable service, even when winter is throwing everything it can at it. If you need sand for the back of your truck to improve traction, safety equipment to keep yourself safe on the roads or other items for your vehicle, please feel free to contact us today to get a quote or place an order. At Wallboard Supply Company, our job is keeping you working.

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Wallboard Supply Company is a third generation, family run business that has been serving New England's building needs since 1970. Bob Filion started the company with a commitment to provide quality drywall and finishing products with unmatched customer service. The company has grown over the years, expanding its' product range, but never wavering from its' core values.