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Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The Importance of Bucket Truck Maintenance!

The bucket truck has gained popularity with many industries, including utility companies and the construction industry. This powerful equipment can be used by various companies for many daily tasks, even the most menial of jobs. All operators and workers should be careful and attentive and take proper safety precautions when working with these heavy-duty vehicles. Equipment failure at job sites is possible; however, these failures can be prevented by a good maintenance program which will help ensure that the equipment is functioning properly, eliminating many of the common causes of breakdowns.

The Essence of Maintenance

Every company should have an annual maintenance program for these vehicles. A thorough inspection and various tests should be performed to identify any signs of damage or wear to the trucks at an early stage; this will not only prevent longer down times but could prevent accidents from happening. Manufacturers are always concerned about safety requirements; therefore, these vehicles are built with many safety features. Despite these necessary features, aging and other factors such as overloads, fatigue, etc., could result in damage and deterioration to these vehicles. Additionally, both OSHA and ANSI require that every bucket truck have a regular annual inspection to identify any problems before causing major problems.

Replacing the Bucket

The bucket is one of the major components of this type of truck. It is designed to hold one or two persons, according to the required capacity set by the manufacturer. Any signs of damage or deterioration of this component may mean that it needs to be replaced. There are many replacement parts available and are typically made from fiberglass, which is very durable. There are also accessories that not only help prolong the service life of the bucket; they also provide comfort for the operator. A polyethylene liner can improve the safety of the workers by providing them with a rough surface. This liner can also help prevent, or decrease, physical damage to the platform. Replacing this component is easily accomplished by a professional technician at a reputable repair facility per manufacturer or dealer recommendations.

Storage

When a bucket truck is parked outside most of the time, it should be protected from rain or any other inclement weather. Accessories, such as a cover, can protect the inside of the bucket from snow or rain. This cover may be made from either fiberglass or vinyl and is widely available on the market. It is also important to avoid parking the vehicle near trees, as debris could fall and hit the vehicle, causing damage.

Reputable Repair Shop

Annual maintenance inspections and repairs should be done by a reputable repair center with competent, knowledgeable and experienced technicians. Such a high-quality repair facility could be of great assistance to a company manager who does not have the proper knowledge regarding parts. Professionals at these facilities can offer assistance by recommending the best accessories and components available that could boost the performance of the bucket truck.

Secure Certification and Report

Once all of the maintenance inspections and tests have been completed, a report will be created. This report must then be reviewed by a representative of the company. Once the report has been reviewed, the representative must acknowledge receipt and approve the report by signing and dating it. A copy of this report is retained by the company and the original is returned to the repair center for retention purposes.

When it comes to the safe operation of a bucket truck, there is no place for complacency as this affects the overall efficiency of the company. It is so important that every one of these vehicles is well-maintained to ensure its functionality and safety!

Christopher M. Hunter is an expert in commercial specialty trucks. Click here to find out more about Bucket Trucks.


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