We will be hosting an Air Disc Brake Training on June 26th at 9:00am and 11:00am in Liverpool, NY.
This event is open to all customers, please call us and RSVP to reserve your spot!
See our flyer for more information:
“Since bringing the A26-powered International LT and RH Series trucks into its fleet, ERL has experienced zero un-scheduled downtime”, according to General Manager Steve Sperbeck.
All over the world, there is a paradox occurring. Although GDPs are skyrocketing, unemployment rates are increasing as well. The cause for this unexpected outcome is automation. Since the beginning of time, machines have been used to do the work of humans as the technology became available. Since the turn of the century, this shift has been happening at a much more rapid rate than in the past, and it’s affecting all industries alike, including the trucking industry. Although the technology to manufacture self driving trucks is quickly becoming available, whether or not people are ready for this transition is a different story.
According to an article from truckingtruth.com, the approximate number of jobs potentially at risk is over 3 million, however, “The number of physical and mental tasks that the typical driver undertakes daily are generally things that an automated truck wouldn’t be doing for itself.” Truckingtruth.com is not the only source that claims that the world isn’t quite ready for automated trucks. Thegaurdian.com quoted Ray Rodriguez in saying “I don’t think a robot could do my job.” Many believe that this massive shift in the industry is still decades away. People simply might not be ready to comprehend an 18 wheeler driving down the highway at over 60 miles an hour without someone behind the wheel.
However, there is another side of the trucking automation debate that needs to be considered. Labor accounts for up to 75% of the cost of trucking transportation. Savings that large accompanied by the fact that robots don’t need to stop to eat and sleep are hard to ignore. According to TruckingTruth.com:
“Many trucking industry types appear to be going full-steam ahead on the idea of having self-driving vehicles playing a large role in the people- and goods-moving industries, with both successful and unsuccessful testing being done in major cities across the U.S. Last fall an autonomous truck traveled 120 miles on auto-pilot to deliver a truckload of beer, though it was all highway miles, with a driver riding along.”
These stats make it hard to believe that autonomous trucks are a thing of the future. Some believe that autonomous vehicles will cut down on the number of injuries and fatalities caused by accidents each year, however, one miscalculation in an autonomous vehicle’s code could result in catastrophe and the safety features like those built into all of Stadium International and Isuzu trucks that are designed to protect drivers, won’t protect those on the other end of a miscalculation.
It’s hard to take a stand with all of the hypotheticals that exist in the current situation, however, as the technology continues to develop, there will be big decisions to be made by almost everyone who has a role within the Trucking Industry. Until then, the engineers and mechanics at companies like Stadium International, Isuzu, and more continue to implement the newest and safest technologies in every truck they make in order to achieve the ultimate scenario that can improve efficiency and safety as long as men and women are behind the wheel.
Owning your own company, being your own boss, and working for yourself can be exciting and enlightening, however it can also be extremely stressful. Although you single-handedly have everything to win, you also have everything to lose should something go wrong. Before you dive into starting your own company, be prepared for more failures than wins, more hours worked than ever before, and more passion and exhilaration for your work than you’ve ever felt.
For the most part, starting your own trucking company is no different than if you wanted to open a restaurant, clothing store, or spa. It’s all about the money.
If you have a dream, a vision, confidence, and years of experience as an owner/ operator of a single truck, then you’re already halfway there to owning your own trucking company. Once you’re in the right mindset, it’s time to start taking action.
Financially, starting your own trucking company can be a burden. To lighten the load, make sure your own truck is paid off before investing in new trucks and equipment. Don’t forget that you also have to pay people to drive the and operate every piece of new equipment you buy, otherwise it’s money sunk. The start up costs of opening your own company will undoubtedly put you in debt. Don’t go into it already being in debt.
Before you even start researching your first additional truck to buy, open a savings account and start putting money away. According to alltrucking.com, as a business owner you’ll have unforeseen expenses that, as the owner, you’ll have to pay for out of pocket. As a business owner, you also need to make sure that your employees get paid, even if that means you don’t. As a new company, business is likely to be inconsistent, so you’ll want a financial base to rely on if business is slow for a period of time.
To sum up the topic of money and get to the inspirational part, just make sure you have a solid financial plan. According to alltrucking.com, you’ll want to account for expenses such as truck payments, a good amount for truck repairs and maintenance, business taxes, licenses and registrations which vary by state employee payments, insurance, and every other expense that comes up in the trucking industry. It’s also important to keep in mind that unlike working for a company, your paydays are every 30 – 45 days as opposed to every 7 – 14 days. That being said, going into this venture mentally prepared to be in the red for a while will make your life much easier when you are actually in the red.
Okay, now time for the exciting part, buying the equipment! Do thorough research. Don’t sacrifice quality for a good deal, you can’t go wrong with brands like Stadium International, Isuzu, or Stadium Idealease. And I cannot stress enough to make sure you have a warranty on every piece of equipment you buy. These are machines and machines break, you know that, you’ve worked in the industry long enough to know better than to risk it, especially now that it’s your own butt on the line.
You will also need to register and license all of your trucks and equipment with the state before you start conducting business. According to truckdrivingjobs.com each state has its own laws when it comes to transporting goods in-state and across state lines. Follow the law, even if you don’t like it. The last thing you need is to be fined. You’ve already accumulated enough debt with your startup costs.
It’s also extremely important to market yourself. You didn’t get into this because you thought it’d be fun. You did it because you knew you could be successful and so you need to let others know why you’ll be successful. You need to market yourself. Show, don’t tell what makes you different. The better you know this, the easier it will be to show others. While on the topic of marketing, don’t forget to include it as a startup cost (I know I said we were done talking about money, but I lied). In all seriousness, what good is a brand new, fully functioning company if no one knows it exists. I’ll say it one more time, market yourself and show, don’t tell.
Alltrucking.com also advises against setting your initial rates too low. A lower price point does not mean more customers. What is does mean is flaky customers, who might jump ship the moment your prices go up. Price yourself according to your worth.
All that being said, once you have prepared yourself mentally for the endeavor you’re about to take on, make sure that your finances are in line, your equipment and employees are up to snuff, and your marketing is on point. After that, almost everything else will take care of itself.
If you think you’re ready start looking for trucks!
There is a lot to be said for getting your CDL and being employed to drive an 18 wheeler or a similar sized vehicle. The amount of responsibility is more than many people can fathom, but being able to take to the open road makes it all worth it. Driving is serious business for anyone, but if you’re driving a CMV, then that responsibility is greatly exponentialized. Before you start your CDL classes, here are some things you need to take into consideration before deciding on this as a career.
According to truck-drivers-money-saving-tips.com, “Those desiring a CDL must pass a General Knowledge test and a Skills test, the latter of which proves that the driver can demonstrate stopping, backing, making turns, driving on city and highway roads, and weaving a truck through a ‘serpentine’ course.”
Some of the most important things to consider when it comes to safely operating a CMV are:
What all of this means is that the best truck drivers are very aware of their surroundings and have amazing depth perception. They are good at realistically planning. If you are someone who says they are on their way somewhere when you haven’t even left the house yet, then this might not be the job for you. Lastly, if you pride yourself on making great time when you drive, then you might be better suited as an Uber or taxi driver than a truck driver. There is just too much at stake to risk speeding.
Another thing to keep in mind is that, just like a job in any other industry, you will have to pay your dues. As a truck driver, that means it will be difficult to land a nice local job from the get go, but if you’re someone who loves driving, freedom, and solitude, then after a few years you could work bankers hours and get to go home every night while earning an annual salary similar to someone who holds a bachelor’s degree, but without the student loans. Like any other career choice, it’s not a decision that can be made overnight, but as previously stated there are explicit skill sets and interests that make some people better cut out for the job than others. Interest and knowledge of working parts can also be extremely helpful for this career. To learn more about the vehicles you’d be driving, check out our other posts! Any and all research can help you decide if this is the right job for you.
We are all in a hurry to get where we need to be, and that goes even more so for those who are transporting tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of merchandise to a destination. We do what we can to make sure that we get to our destinations as quickly and safely as possible without any unnecessary delays, such as getting pulled over. So, we watch our speed, we follow road signs, and we take care of ourselves to make sure that we are well rested.
However, there is more we can do in order to avoid getting pulled over for those dreaded, time killing roadside inspections or speed up the process if an inspection is just ultimately unavoidable.
Time is of the essence, but if and when you get stopped for an inspection, making the process go as quickly and smoothly as possible will save yourself and the inspector time and frustration.
Does AC really use more fuel or does having the windows open (created wind resistance) burn more?
It’s summertime! Some of us wait all year for these sacred three months, while others feel as though they are literally burning in hell due to the heat. For those of you snow misers out there, I’m sure you’ve wondered what actually burns more fuel, running the AC or driving with the windows down.
The answer isn’t simple. Auto manufacturers claim that cranking up the AC doesn’t actually burn through as much gas as every body seems to think. However, the guys at Mythbusters tested these statements and discovered the opposite. When they filled two SUV’s up with 5 gallons of gas in each and drove at 45 mph on the same road, the SUV that ran the AC ran out of gas 15 miles before the one that drove with the windows down. This should come to no surprise. Running the AC uses power from the engine which depletes fuel in the tank faster. According the the Canadian Natural Resource Center, if you drive 9,000 miles annually, running the AC can cost you over $3,000 over ten years, now just imagine how these numbers would be adjusted to apply to your truck!
However, there is some good news! According to the United states Department of Energy, the more fuel efficient option depends a great deal on how fast you are driving. This is good news for many of you out there. When driving highway speeds, it’s more fuel efficient to run the AC as opposed to keeping the windows open since wind resistance is at its maximum on the highway.
There are obviously some other factors to take into consideration such as the specific size and weight of your truck, but for the most part, these stats will apply to any vehicle at scale.
All in all, the choice is yours, no one will blame you for prioritizing comfort over saving a few extra bucks for those long trips.
We are proud to announce that Stadium International Trucks is now a Diamond Edge Certified International Truck Dealer. This select Diamond Edge Certified network are high-performance service departments and have pledged their allegiance to the customer experience. This means more uptime for your business and better value for your truck repairs and maintenance.
In International Truck’s ongoing effort to drive uptime and unmatched service to its customers, along with IC Bus and its dealer network, together they introduced the Diamond Edge Certification. When servicing a vehicle at International Trucks or IC Bus Diamond Edge Certified Certified Dealership, customers experience faster service, immediate parts availability and a higher level of servicing expertise.
|Faster Turnaround||Accelerated Service Lane||Dedicated lanes ensure International customers receive vehicle evaluation by a technician and are informed of required repair, required parts and availability and estimated repair time within two hours of vehicle’s arrival.|
|All makes parts inventory||Parts Availability||Diamond Edge certified dealerships participate in Dealer Inventory Alliance (DIA) to ensure common parts are readily available in the dealer’s’ inventory.|
|Express Diagnostics||Accelerator Write-up||First-of-its-kind mobile application that expedites customer’s service visits by streamlining the write-up and diagnostic process|
|Knowledgeable Technicians||Trained Workforce||Technicians, Service Advisors and service management have all met or exceed training requirements, and undergo training to stay current with changing technology and service procedures.|
In order to obtain a Diamond Edge certification Stadium International Trucks passed rigorous parts and service guidelines, including the time it takes for a customer to get their truck diagnosed, repaired and back on the road.
Certification is awarded once a dealership achieves a minimum of 4 out of 5 diamonds. Each diamond represents Stadium International Trucks commitment to:
Stadium International Trucks is expected to develop long-term action plans that result in better service and reduced dwell time for its customers.
Extensive training completed on a routine basis ensures customers receive the highest level of service from our technicians.
Stadium International Trucks service departments commit to adopting technology like our Accelerator Write-up App, a first-of-its-kind mobile app created to expedite service visits by streamlining the write-up and diagnostic process.
Stadium International Trucks was measured against strict benchmarks in order to minimize vehicle downtime. When a dealer acquires this diamond, it signifies they have achieved an average overall dwell time of less than 5 days for ALL vehicle serviced at its location.
To be considered an elite International service department it takes a serious commitment. That’s why Stadium International Trucks was measured on how many warranty repairs it completed in 1 day or less. Faster repairs done right the first time, earned us a diamond and our customers more uptime.
The winter season has tightened its grip on the region. If you want to prevent annoying breakdowns, it’s important to focus on the big three systems, cranking, fuel and brakes.
Cranking system problems can be the most frustrating for a couple of reasons: they are the easiest to prevent, but can be repetitive if not properly addressed. It’s not unusual to have a truck jump started on a cold morning, just to call for service again a few days later. It’s important to keep in mind that your alternator is not meant to charge dead batteries. What it is designed to do however is to maintain already charged batteries and support your truck’s electrical loads once the engine is running.
Operating a jump started vehicle without correcting the problem will result in either the alternator will fail because it overheated trying to charge dead batteries, or once the driver turns the engine off, the engine will not crank. It’s important to always locate the root cause, and have it repaired. This will help you avoid additional costs and delays. The good news is that cranking system problems are relatively easy to diagnose and repair. Modern testing equipment gives our techs the most accurate test results and is less stressful on the battery. The same testing equipment can be used to check the cables, connections and alternator performance.
Fuel system defects are major contributors to winter breakdowns. As your fuel gets colder, the wax in the fuel starts to reform and slows or prevents fuel from flowing. To add to that, any water in the fuel system will freeze. That may starve the fuel system and cause poor performance, it could also cause the engine to not run at all. To avoid this, be sure your fuel heaters are operable and your fuel-water separator is hooked up correctly and functioning as designed. Some fuel-water separators are heated in the winter by engine coolant that is routed to them via heater hoses. If your engine is running too cold, you are most likely to have more severe fuel freeze ups and/or fuel gelling.
Brake systems are prone to freeze ups. When the temperature drops below freezing, any moisture will freeze and restrict or prevent airflow within the brake system. This will likely result in a service call and could take quite some time to correct. To help keep moisture in your air system to a minimum, be sure your air-dryer filter is replaced per the manufacturer’s recommendation. Additionally, be conscious of an excessive amount of moisture coming from your wet tank when drained daily. If you add deicing agents to your air system, be certain to pour them down stream from the air dryer. The moisture-absorbing material in the air dryer can only hold so much, so if added upstream, the deicing chemicals will over-saturate the air dryer and eliminate its capability to dry the air.
If you haven’t done so, take the time to implement some preventative maintenance by having your cranking, fuel and brake system inspected before winter stops you and your truck.
When a truck is stopped idling it actually burns through about a gallon per hour, decreasing overall fuel economy by 1%. Idle fuel consumption increases quite a bit with engine speed, so fleets should implement practices to select lowest possible idle speed.
Controlling Idle Time
Many states and municipalities have adopted strict no-idle legislation to reduce overall emission levels. The technology needed to maintain these rules offer the added benefit of increased fuel economy while still maintaining driver comfort.
This feature leverages a smaller, diesel-powered motor to provide heat to the cab, sleeper and engine block, using only a fraction of the fuel that would be used by idling the truck’s primary engine.
Battery Powered HVAC System
This system produces 17,000 BTU of heat and 6,000 BTU of air and can maintain a comfortable cab for the driver in temperature ranges between zero and 100 degrees. This system is powered by eight AGM batteries which support faster recharge rates and higher discharge capacity vs. deep-cycle batteries.
Battery Management Systems
The auto stop/start battery management system, available in sleeper configurations, is a good solution for those who need no-idle load management to prevent any dead battery occurrences. It works with the battery powered HVAC system and will automatically start the engine with a low battery or if the engine is too cold.
Idle Shutdown Timer
This limits the amount of engine idle time by automatically shutting down the engine after approximately 3 to 5 minutes. This feature will shut down the engine, but the vehicle electrical system and accessories will stay active until the key switch is turned off. When engine operation is needed again, drivers simply depress the clutch and turn the ignition to start as normal.
Unnecessary idling is an unnecessary profit loss. A truck idling can burn through a gallon of fuel per hour and for fleet owners, this certainly adds up.
When you are in the fleet business, you should make sure that you limit any downtime. This is to ensure that you do not affect your business negatively. The only way of doing this is by managing your fleet and making sure that your vehicles are on the road at all times. How to effectively […]Read More