Habit 1. Professional drivers keep their windows and mirrors clear.
Professional drivers use a good quality automotive glass cleaner when washing their windows—never dish soap or common household cleaners.
Tip: Don’t use the window-washing squeegee device found in self-service fuel stations as it may contain embedded gas, oil, and road salts that will transfer onto your windshield. For best results use a microfiber cloth to apply the cleaner and another microfiber cloth to wipe it off.
Habit 2. Professional drivers keep their window wipers in good working condition.
Professional drivers know the rule of thumb is to replace the wipers every six to twelve months— the frequency depending on driving conditions and climate.
Tip: Replace your wipers during normal service. Don’t to wait until the wipers start to chatter or streak. Clean the wiper blades whenever you are cleaning the window glass. Some drivers use 303 wiper treatment on the blades.
Habit 3. Professional drivers keep their window-washer reservoir full.
Professional drivers top the window-washer reservoir with a quality windshield glass cleaner.
Tip: Don’t use plain water as it can become a breeding ground for bacterium. Be wary of cheap, “home-brew” cleaning solutions that may damage paint or the rubber on the wipers.
Habit 4. Professional drivers check their tire air pressure frequently.
There are all kinds of tire pressure systems. Tire pressure monitoring systems (TPMS), adopted by about 1/3 of fleets (NACFE 2013 Benchmark Study), cannot add air to an underinflated tire, and automatic tire inflation systems (ATIS)— used by about 10% of fleets (Ibid)— while able to restore air to tires, usually can not report the actual inflation pressure in any given tire. The best tire inflation checker, for the majority of fleets, is still the professional driver.
Tip: Check cold PSI with a quality air gauge.
Habit 5. Professional drivers constantly check their vehicle.
Every time they stop, professional truck drivers do a quick walk around the truck before hitting the road. They check the tires, the lights, brakes, load securement, etc.
Tip: If you are out of view of the truck— be sure to check the coupling release, too.
It’s not Easy
It’s not easy being a pro— if it were, everyone would be above average and there would be nothing new to learn. Simply put, professional drivers have high standards and do more than expected.
Thank you for reading this.