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Fleetcheck says servicing and maintenance key for rest of 2020

Date: 06 August 2020   |   Author: Sean Keywood

Servicing and maintenance will be key aspects of fleet management for the rest of the year, according to software firm Fleetcheck.

It says that there are several challenges arising post-lockdown that will mean fleets need to concentrate on them more than usual.

The main issue, according to Fleetcheck managing director Peter Golding, will be pressure to reduce costs, coinciding with vehicle replacements often being delayed.

He said: "Because of the uncertainty around the current economic situation, many companies are pulling the purse strings tight. This means that they are often putting off their normal car and van replacement cycles at the same time as looking at ways of cutting service and maintenance costs.

"Clearly, these two objectives are not always compatible. The longer you keep hold of a vehicle, the more closely its service and maintenance needs to be monitored and the more likely it is that serious problems start to develop that cost a lot of money to put right.

"What fleet managers need to do is to try and arrive at strategies that allow them to keep all the vehicles on their fleet in a fully roadworthy condition while, at the same time, minimising expenditure. This can be done, we believe, but it is not easy."

Golding said fleets should scrutinise servicing and maintenance costs as closely as possible, ensuring that the work was done to a high standard at a competitive price.

He said the best way to do this would vary between different fleets, with some having the necessary technical expertise in-house, and others needing to take expert advice.

"In both instances, the solutions employed may mean, for example, looking at using more independent repairers, reviewing tyre brands bought and watching for areas of accidental overcharging, such as sometimes happens with oil and other fluids," he said. 

Golding added that MOT test capacity was another issue of concern.

"It's been widely highlighted already but considerable pressure will be placed on the MOT testing infrastructure as all the delayed tests become due alongside all of those that were set to take place anyway. Demand will sky rocket and there may not be enough capacity.

"Our advice to fleet managers is to book in now all of your vehicles that have MOT tests due before the end of the year. It is not impossible that some cars and vans will have to be removed from use because a test isn't available before their current MOT expires."