Winter is fast approaching and will be here before you know it! Truck driving in harsh, cold, icy weather can send a cold shiver down any driver’s spine. However, if a trucker prepares with winter equipment check, they can not only make it through the Winter months, but excel in strides.
The first step a trucker must take when preparing for the Winter is to take a thorough look at their winter equipment and take winter inventory of what they have in their cargo control portfolio. Open up your toolboxes and determine the condition of your gear and what valuable items you may be missing. Some gear can be repaired, but other used items may need to be fully replaced. Begin to write a detailed winter inventory list of what you currently have and what you need. This list will make it easy to determine what you need to purchase to make it through the harsh winter months.
It’s Time for Your Winter Equipment Check
Winter brings a whole new set of challenges for truckers that they must consider before hitting the road. Even if you typically drive home to a warm, southern state, chances are you’ll have a route that could take you up North. In which case, you may be used to the warm weather, but you and your gear must be adaptable for the situation. It’s time for your Winter equipment Check! Below I’ll break down everything you need to know to be prepared for these harsh winter months
Mytee Products has everything you need for safe and productive winter truck driving. We invite you to browse our entire winter equipment for the following critical supplies:
1. Truck Tarps for Winter
Every trucker who does flatbed work needs to have a full selection of tarps for winter on hand at all times. During the winter months, the trucker’s choice of tarps for winter can mean the difference between adequate protection and taking risks with cargo. In terms of fabrics, there are three main choices:
Made of polyethylene or polypropylene, poly tarps are considered all-purpose tarps. They are generally UV-treated and waterproof, so they’re not bad as general tools for cargo control. They may not be the best choice during harsh winter weather that can include very low temperatures.
Also known as heavy duty tarps or machinery tarps, vinyl tarps tend to be the strongest and most durable that truckers can buy. They provide the most resistance against stress, tearing and abrasions, and they can handle cold temperatures exceptionally well. The best vinyl tarps on the market don’t even flinch at temperatures well below zero.
Canvas tarps are a good choice when breathability is an issue. They also handle cold temperatures well, but struggle with standing water. Canvas tarps are subject to mold growth and could tear as a result of ice buildup. It is advisable to use them with caution during the winter.
2. Tires and Snow Chains for Trucks
Every trucker knows how critical tires are in bad weather. Make sure all of your tires are in good condition before winter weather sets in. Trucks not only need good tires, but they need dependable snow chains as well. Snow chains for trucks are an indispensable tool for winter driving. As an experienced flatbed trucker, you know that there are some jurisdictions around the country that mandate the use of chains under certain weather conditions. Do not get caught having to wait at a chain bank until another trucker comes down the road with a set you can use. Buy your own heavy duty tire chains for winter, so you are always prepared for winters.
All our tire chain carriers come from a well-known manufacturer and are constructed with the trucker’s safety in mind. We have both twist and square link chains for you to choose from. You can purchase both singles and doubles as well. Not having snow tire chains on board during the winter season is asking for trouble. Don’t tempt fate. Instead, buy your trailer tire link chains from Mytee Products and be ready for the snow when it comes.
Consider purchasing this Lockable Tire Chain Carrier to store your assortment of chains so you never lose or misplace them.
3. Straps, Winches and Binders for Trucks
Cold temperatures and high winds can make securing cargo a real challenge during the winter. Cargo control is easier when the truck driver has the right kinds of supplies in good working condition. Therefore, check your toolbox for an ample supply of mesh and bungee straps, binders, winches, and chains. If any of your straps are worn, keep in mind that cold temperatures could cause them to fail at any point. Worn straps should be replaced.
Along with straps, binders and winches, drivers should have an ample supply of corner and edge protectors. Remember that even vinyl tarps can get brittle in cold temperatures. Where corner and edge protectors may not be necessary during the warmer temperatures of summer, they could make a real difference in protecting your tarps once temperatures drop.
Having the correct rubber bungee straps for the Winter is also important. In warmer climates, synthetic EPDM bungees perform better. However, they can become brittle and actually snap in colder weather. For the cold weather, make sure you have a supply of Natural Rubber Bungee Straps, as they are better suited for Winter.
8 Steps to Ensure Your Truck is Winterized or Not!
Let’s check out to ensure your truck is winterized or not with 8 simple steps.
Check your Tire Pressure
Cold weather can cause your tire pressure to go down below their recommended PSI. This can lead to lower fuel mileage and increased wear and tear.
Charge the Battery
Winter conditions drain your truck’s battery faster, so ensure it’s fully charged.
Inspect the Cooling System
Ensure your truck coolant has a proper freeze level and inspect all your belts and radiator hoses.
Breaking down in the Winter can become a life or death situation quickly. Ensure you have an emergency kit with hand warmers, food, water, shovels, snow boots, flares, and any other supplies that will help you survive if your truck breaks down in the cold.
Hydrocarbons in your diesel fuel can actually freeze in the winter. Its crucial to choose fuel that is optimized for the winter and add in anti-gel additives each time you fuel up.
Your truck’s air dryer ensures water does not enter your brake lines. Ensure it works before hitting the road.
Engine Block Heater
Diesel fuel engines require more heat to get started than gasoline vehicles. Consider using an electric engine block heater especially if you park your truck for extended periods of time in the Winter.
Replace Windshield Wiper Blades & Fluid
Imagine your driving through a torrential snowstorm and one of your windshield wipers breaks. That’s a situation that can cause a dangerous accident.
Get What You Need Now
Investing in the trucking supplies you need for winter earlier ensures that you will receive everything you order before the weather begins to get troublesome. Winter weather makes for more difficult driving even with the proper supplies on hand. Don’t make your job more difficult than it needs to be this winter by ignoring your winter inventory of trucking supplies. Order your supplies from Mytee Products; if we do not have something you need, contact us anyway. We might be able to get it for you.
Check the above video to get more information on how to make truck winter ready with winter equipment.