You wear a lot of different hats being an owner operator. Among the many hats you wear, one that often goes unnoticed is that of a mechanic. Beyond driving, some truck and trailer drivers take on the vital task of becoming their own semi-truck mechanic.
But is it worth the effort? In this blog, we'll explore four key benefits of being an owner-operator truck mechanic. We hope our blog helps you decide whether this path is worth pursuing in the semi-truck industry or not.
What Are the Cost Savings of Being Your Own Truck Mechanic?
Becoming your own semi-truck mechanic can lead to significant cost savings. Dealers and shops charge steep hourly rates, and parts and repairs can quickly empty out your wallet. If you're on your own and not a part of a fleet, then being your own mechanic will benefit you. When you possess the skills and proper tools to diagnose and address common issues, not only can you cut costs, but you’ll be also able to perform heavy duty DIY repairs on your own!
Doing routine tasks like changing oil, replacing filters when warning signs are going off because it may be a clogged DPF, fixing fault codes, and inspecting brakes saves money when done by yourself. Moreover, you gain the flexibility to shop for parts, potentially finding better deals than a traditional repair shop would offer. These cost savings add up and impact on your bottom line.
Why Your Downtime as a Truck Driver Can Be a Major Setback.
Downtime because of mechanical issues or even worse, a Derate, can be a major setback in the trucking industry, potentially costing you both time and money. Like we said before, if you are a company driver, then being your own mechanic may not benefit you. When you fix your own truck, you can reduce disruptions by dealing with problems promptly.
Instead of waiting for a repair shop appointment, you can fix issues right away. This will help you get your semi-truck back on the road faster. You can adjust your maintenance schedule to match your workload, so your truck is in great shape when you need it.
Plus, you may not have to get your truck insurance involved in the process. This proactive approach can help you meet delivery deadlines and maximize your earnings.
How to Become a Self-Reliant Owner-Operator Truck Driver?
Self-reliance is a prized trait in the world of owner-operator trucking. You are responsible for your business's success. Being able to handle your truck's maintenance and repairs makes you more independent. Plus, you are able to be more proactive with the maintenance of your truck by performing annual inspections on it.
As an independent semi-truck mechanic, you rely less on repair shops or roadside assistance services. Being independent saves time, money, boosts confidence, and prepares you to face challenges directly. Being skilled sets you apart and builds your reputation as a capable and independent owner-operator in the industry. Your reputation is more important than ever because of the industry-wide driver shortage for independent and large trucking companies.
How to Improve Your Safety as a Owner-Operator Independent Driver.
Safety is important in trucking. Maintaining and fixing your semi-truck helps make driving safer. Regular checks and quick fixes can stop big and dangerous problems from happening on your trips.
Knowing your truck and trailer inside and out enables you to identify safety concerns before they become critical. This not only safeguards you but also ensures the safety of other truck drivers sharing the road with you. Being a good semi-truck mechanic saves lives and improves the reputation of the trucking industry.
Is Being Your Own Semi Truck Mechanic as an Owner-Operator Worth It?
Becoming an owner-operator truck mechanic comes with distinct advantages, including cost efficiency, minimized downtime, increased self-reliance, and improved safety. While it requires an investment in time and learning, the benefits far outweigh the initial effort. Whether it's worth it depends on your goals and preferences. By taking charge of your semi-truck's maintenance and repairs, you can make more money and be a confident owner-operator in the world of long-haul semi-trucking.
How To Empower Yourself and Take Control Over Your Semi Trucks Diagnostics.
Have the data at your fingertips and be in control over your semi-truck's diagnostics. Empower yourself to perform tasks such as resetting fault codes, viewing live data, and accessing vehicle history today!
Looking to learn more? Check out our other blog posts.
- How long should a forced DPF regeneration last?
- Tell-tale symptoms of a successful (or unsuccessful) forced DPF regeneration.
- What is face plugging? How does it happen? How can I fix it?
- What happens if your truck can no longer regen?
- What is Forced DPF Regen?
- Common DPF questions Answered!
- What does poor DEF quality Mean?
OTR Diagnostics allows you to read and reset fault codes, view live data, and run advanced diagnostic functions, including forced DPF regen with your mobile phone or tablet.