Fleet Management & Forklift Safety Blog

Why telematics will help you cut  fleet maintenance costs

Posted by Brian Quigley, Director of Client Services on Jan 19, 2016 9:55:52 AM

CutCost.pngDated fleet maintenance practices may be costing you money. If you lack visibility into individual events, you will struggle to identify areas where there is room for improvement as well as prevent costly breakdowns.

Even if you outsource fleet maintenance to a third party, you still need to take a proactive, real-time approach to stop small issues from becoming big problems.

As Mike McKean, fleet management sales and marketing manager for Toyota Material Handling USA, points out in Modern Materials Handling: “To wash your hands of fleet maintenance is to say you want to ignore waste. You’ve got 40 other things to do that don’t involve what it takes to run a fleet. There are operations where they are so busy and so lean that they are very grateful just to have a forklift or a technician to do repairs.”

And, McKean continues, having an in-house technician is no guarantee for efficient use since the approach is typically based on reactionary rather than planned maintenance: “These are the kind of companies who typically don’t track utilization in the first place. They think they have some sort of PM plan, but they probably tend to run equipment to death and repair as needed.”

Although sensor-driven technologies allow managers real-time insight into the performance of each forklift, a surprising number of organizations still rely on gut decisions to determine whether their fleet is due for maintenance. To avoid the up-front cost of a quick fix, managers may hold off until the forklift has been sidelined and the repair is inevitable (and much more costly).

With the help of telematics you can avoid unnecessary downtime and failed equipment. Automated alerts and data-driven preventative maintenance schedules will help you get the most out of your fleet, boost your budget, and prevent expensive downtime.

The savings are indisputable: Keeping track of fleet performance pays both in the short and long term. A study of 20,000 commercial vehicles in the United States and Canada showed the deployment of telematics resulted in a 20 percent drop of the average workday, from 10.6 hours to 8.6 hours, while the number of idling minutes per day saw a 12 percent reduction. Although the Fleetmatics report was not focused on forklifts, or other material handling equipment, a comparison is easily made.

The typical TotalTrax customer will realize 10 to 40 percent productivity gains by using our advanced tracking solutions. Making sure every forklift is operating at capacity at all times plays a big role in those numbers. Take control of fleet maintenance costs by finding a telematics solution that is tailored to your needs.


Topics: telematics, real-time tracking, maintenance tracking