Check out our 10 tips to get your buses winterized:

As another cold winter season is upon us, it’s time to make sure you and your bus are well prepared for the wintery roads ahead. With a year of record rainfall in TX follow these simple steps will ensure your bus fleet is winter ready and insure your passengers are safe and comfortable. 

 

1. Change your oil:

Cold weather driving is hard on a vehicle, especially at start-up. To minimize winter wear and tear on your engine, the right choice of motor oil is key. Hudson Bus offers a Fleet Maintenance Contract to help take the guess work out of your bus service plans. Using the wrong motor oil can leave your engine poorly protected, as oil tends to thicken in colder climates and may lead to a lack of vital engine lubrication. Check your owner’s manual for suggestions on which oil to use in different climates and temperatures. Hudson Bus offers a Fleet Maintenance Contract to help take the guess work out of your bus service plans.

 

2. Visibility:

Poor visibility and difficult driving conditions can happen when you least expect it. For maximum visibility, check and change your windshield wipers before they start to scrape the glass. Investing in winter-specific wiper blades can also be an inexpensive way to keep your drivers safe in bad weather. Also, remember to fill up on wiper fluid and check that your front and rear defrosters are in working order to provide a clear view of the road.

 

3. Battery basics: 

Cold weather weakens batteries and can leave you and your car stranded in the middle of a storm. Remember to carry a handy set of jumper cables just in case you or your drivers need help in an emergency. Make sure the batteries posts and connections are clean and corrosion-free to ensure the best trouble-free performance. If your battery is more than 3 years old, get it tested annually and if it's more than 5 years old, consider getting a replacement.

 

4. Check your tire pressure: 

Proper tire inflation is a simple way to get the best traction and fuel mileage out of your vehicle. Cold weather can cause tire pressure to change by as much as 1 psi (pounds per square inch) per 10°F shift in temperature. A sudden change in tire pressure can affect driving performance and safety along with increased tire wear and additional fuel consumption. Make sure your tires are properly inflated to match the recommended pressure stated on the tire or in your owners manual. Regularly check your tires for tread wear. Tires with worn treads can slip much faster on ice and rain.

 

5. Lighting system check:

Inspecting your headlights, taillights and turn signals allows you to see and be seen by fellow drivers in any weather condition. Always ensure they are all in working order and promptly replace any burnt out bulbs in pairs to ensure optimal safety performance. Many of today’s plastic headlights can fade or cloud up over time and using an inexpensive headlight restoration kit can rejuvenate and repair them back to their crystal clear condition.

 

6. Fluids: 

Antifreeze is an essential part of proper winter protection for your buses. This is the liquid found inside of your radiator and should contain an ideal 50/50 mix of antifreeze and water. You can use an inexpensive antifreeze tester or ask your trusted Hudson Bus Mechanic to make sure the fluid level is full and the mixture is correct to avoid freezing. You should also perform a regular radiator fluid flush as suggested in your owner’s manual.

 

7. Winter tune-up / inspection:

Winter weather can take a toll on your car’s performance. It’s always a good idea to inspect your spark plugs, brakes, steering and suspension each season to avoid costly repairs and unexpected problems in the cold. Be sure to pay very close attention to vital belts and hoses, as sudden temperature changes can do a number on these critical rubber parts over the years and may need to be replaced. All of this is included in out Fleet Maintenance Contract.

 

8. Child Alert Systems:

As weather conditions get worse, driver response time gets shorter. Your Child Alert System as well as back-up camera should be checked regularly to make sure they are wired correctly and working properly.

 

9. Heating & Air Conditioning Systems:

A number of factors can contribute to heating and AC system problems. Such as dirty AC filters and leaks. Antifreeze leaks can lead to heating problems or leave you stranded on the side of the road. Our technicians are trained to pinpoint issues with your AC and heating system.

 

10. Water Leaks:

With more rain and wind in the winter season, it is a common problem for water leaks around windows, lights, and doors. At Hudson Bus our Mechanics are trained to quickly identify and replace leaky trim and seals. In many cases we can replace them onsite at your facility.

 

Our technicians are ASE (Automotive Service Excellence) certified and are here to help with these and other issues. If you are not able to bring your bus to us we have a mobile mechanic that can come to you. Call today to schedule service to what sure your buses are winter ready.