Undercarriage inspections are crucial for heavy-duty truck and bus fleets to maintain safety, comfort, and driving performance. However, relying on a manual process is time-consuming and hidden damage is more likely to be missed. A suspension and steering diagnostic system is a must-have tool for undercarriage inspections as it allows fleets to safely recreate operating conditions and find undetectable issues in less time.
Discover the key benefits of suspension and steering diagnostic systems to upgrade your fleet’s undercarriage inspections!
What Does a Suspension and Steering Diagnostic System Do?
A suspension diagnostic system combined with a steering diagnostic system, like the VIS-Check: Road Simulator, tests undercarriage components of vehicles under harsh operating conditions and finds otherwise undetectable issues. It comprises shaker plates, a hydraulic jack, and an automated process to recreate road conditions.
The system has a small footprint and is adaptable to any shop or facility. It’s able to inspect a variety of undercarriage components:
Worn Tie Rod Ends and King Pins
Spring Pins, Shackles, and Hangers
Loose U Bolts
Air Bag Integrity
Drive Train Problems
Loose Wheel Bearings
Worn Yokes/Center Bearings
Loose Exhaust Mounts
If any part of the undercarriage is damaged, then the vehicle will be less safe. Plus, undetected issues can turn into expensive problems. With the VIS-Check: Road Simulator, you can safely recreate road conditions and easily pinpoint issues to maintain and extend vehicle performance.
Advantages of Diagnostic Systems for Fleets
The best way to ensure an accurate and timely undercarriage inspection is to use a suspension diagnostic system, and when checking the maneuverability, safety and handling of a bus or truck there is no match to using a reliable steering diagnostic system. With The VIS-Check: Road Simulator you get both to bring you numerous advantages, such as efficiency and lower costs — see how your fleet will benefit from a diagnostic system!
Automates undercarriage inspections
Make your business more efficient with automation. A suspension diagnostic system creates a repeatable inspection process, which increases productivity and improves results consistency.
Detects hidden issues
Uncovering broken, worn, or damaged undercarriage components are critical for safety and lower your vehicle operational costs. Keep your vehicles in optimal condition by making it easier to find hidden issues.
Shortens service times
Time is money, and a lengthy inspection process cuts into your bottom line. Manual inspections require lots of experience and extended training. Invest in a suspension and steering diagnostic system to shorten service times and improve efficiency.
A steering diagnostic system is vital for ensuring vehicle safety as it allows technicians to examine its performance under harsh road conditions. It also identifies ride issues and reduces driver fatigue, leading to safer rides.
Saves on labor and vehicle costs
The VIS-Check: Road Simulator only requires one technician, reducing labor costs while boosting productivity. In addition, a diagnostic system lowers vehicle operating costs since you can detect and repair issues, thereby extending tire life and fuel economy.
When a vehicle has a roadside breakdown, driver safety is put at risk and productivity comes to a screeching halt. Keep your fleet and business humming along with a suspension and steering diagnostic system that bolsters vehicle operation and maintenance.
Level-Up Your Fleet’s Operations
A suspension and steering diagnostic system is vital for heavy-duty fleets for many reasons, from improving vehicle performance to lowering operating costs. Easily check for hidden issues and test undercarriage components with an automated process, ensuring your technicians don’t miss anything that could potentially endanger safety or disrupt your operations.
Ready to Optimize Your Fleet? Contact Us Today for Pricing and Features of the VIS-Check: Road Simulator diagnostic system!
One of the best ways to enhance vehicle safety and fleet operations is by using a performance-based brake tester (PBBT), aka ‘roller brake tester,’ as it makes your inspection process easier while reducing service time and costs. See why a PBBT/roller brake tester, like the VIS-Check, is an essential undercarriage tool for improving inspections so your technicians can test and perform maintenance with confidence.
Benefits of a PBBT/Roller Brake Tester for Undercarriage Inspection
A PBBT/roller brake tester allows you to accurately check the braking force and inspect brake system components of a wide range of vehicles in less time. While there are many advantages to using the VIS-Check, here are the top five ways that a PBBT/roller brake tester can improve your inspection process.
1. Requires less space than traditional testing methods.
The VIS-Check requires minimal space for testing so you don’t have to worry about making room to store a bulky machine or making space for a testing yard. In addition to its smaller footprint, we offer various models including in-ground, over-pit, or portable trailer units to fit into any facility.
2. Testing can be done in 10-15 minutes.
A PBBT/roller brake tester reduces service time by automating brake systeminspection so testing takes less than 15 minutes. Quicker testing allows your technicians to perform other work, thereby increasing productivity.
3. Provides a consistent, repeatable test process to ensure accuracy.
A diagnostic machine provides a consistent, repeatable test process that produces much greater accuracy than traditional testing methods. It’s also able to find otherwise undetectable repairs, resulting in better vehicle safety.
4. Can be done with only one technician to save labor.
The VIS-Check can be operated with only one technician, allowing technicians to detect and inspect undercarriage issues with precision and in less time, thereby decreasing labor while increasing production. Additionally, vehicles remain stationary while testing with no rapid deceleration testing to eliminate the risk of injury to testing personnel.
5. Tests a wide range of vehicles, allowing you to inspect the entire fleet with just one machine.
Our PBBT/roller brake tester is incredibly versatile since it can test many types of vehicles like heavy-duty or medium duty trucks, transit buses, school buses, work trucks, motor homes, emergency services vehicles, and more. Streamline your fleet operation by having the Swiss Army knife of undercarriage diagnostics and maintenance.
Enhance Vehicle Safety and Fleet Operations
Manual inspection of the brake systems and components is laborious, time-consuming, and leaves room for errors. That’s why switching to an accurate and faster PBBT/roller brake tester that takes up minimal space is crucial for improving inspections. If you’re looking for one of the best around, then look no further than the VIS-Check. It finds undercarriage and brake system issues in minutes, not hours, so you can save labor and increase productivity.
From curb checking to road debris, there are many ways that aluminum wheels can get damaged which is why refinishing aluminum wheels with the VIS-Polish Automated Aluminum Wheel Polishing system is one of the best ways to bring back their luster. Not only is the automated machine beneficial for improving how aluminum wheels look, but it also makes maintenance easier and enhances the safety of your wheel rims. Discover the benefits that the VIS-Polish offers for truck dealers, fleets, commercial tire shops, used truck sellers, and detail shops.
6 Benefits of VIS-Polish for Refinishing Aluminum Wheels
The VIS-Polish is used in facilities across the United States and Canada to polish and refinish aluminum wheels due to its accuracy, speed, and versatility. Here are some key advantages of using an automated machine to see how it’ll improve the operation of your fleet or shop.
1. Can uncover hidden wheel damage.
Refinishing aluminum wheels improves wheel safety by removing layers of dirt and debris to reveal hidden wheel damage like cracks, oxidation, warping, and more. While just soap and water can remove superficial layers of dirt and debris, this method does not provide any other benefits to overall wheel health. Adopting a more thorough wheel maintenance program can improve overall fleet safety. Easily remove heavy oxidization and identify issues quicker by running the wheels through the VIS-Polish machine.
2. Reduces the cost of wheel maintenance by extending the life of your rims.
Using an automated wheel finishing machine reduces the cost of wheel maintenance by making the process more accurate and less time-consuming. It takes about 30 minutes per wheel! Things like rust, pitting, and dissimilar metal corrosion can affect the reliability of the rim. With proper maintenance, you can improve the integrity of your rim surface as well as the entire tire and wheel assembly to extends the life of your rims and saves you money. By routinely sanding and polishing your wheels, you can help remove these elements before the wheel is compromised.
3. Makes pre-trip inspections easier and more thorough.
Pre-trip inspections are important for safety but they can take a long time and leave room for hidden issues to go unnoticed. A clean wheel surface is key to proper visual inspection of your wheel rims. With the VIS-Polish, your pre-trip inspections will become an easier and more thorough process.
4. Creates optimum wheel surface to maintain proper torque.
A maintained wheel surface also ensures that proper clamping force of the lug nuts is retained after servicing. If there are lingering materials like dirt, paint, or rust left between the lug nuts and wheel surface during service, wheels can lose torque and become loose more quickly. The debris can compress or wash away leaving gaps between the lug nuts and the wheel surface, reducing the clamping force and increasing the chance of losing lug nuts or wheels. Refinishing aluminum wheels creates an optimum wheel surface, thereby allowing the vehicle to maintain proper torque.
5. Improves fleet image and reputation.
The VIS-Polish can help enhance your fleet’s image and reputation by improving the look and performance of your vehicles’ wheels. Additionally, it shows that your fleet cares about maintaining high-quality standards. Attractive, well-maintained vehicles are perceived to be safer by law enforcement and your customers will feel more at ease giving you their business when they see well maintained vehicles.
6. Attracts and retains drivers.
The machines and tools at your facility matter when it comes to attracting and retaining drivers. Equip your drivers with one of the most trusted automated wheel polishing systems on the market to make it easier for them to properly maintain heavy-duty vehicles, trucks, or buses. When drivers climb into a shining and sparkling vehicle at the start of their day, they feel a sense of pride in their vehicle and their company. Giving drivers a vehicle that they are proud of can lead to better driver retention rates and can also improve employee performance.
Enhance Your Facility with Automated Wheel Refinishing
There is a variety of maintenance, cost, and performance advantages of refinishing aluminum wheels with the VIS-Polish. It also offers intangible benefits like improving fleet reputation and attracting drivers which grows your business in the long-run. Like all of our products, the VIS-Polish is built to last which is why it’s used by vehicle service and maintenance shops throughout the United States and Canada.
Properly maintaining and cleaning truck wheels is one of the most important things a trucker or fleet manager can do to prevent hazardous flats and blowouts, improve fuel economy, and increase the lifespan of the wheels and other truck systems. Check out these eight maintenance tips for truck wheels to keep your operations rolling smoothly.
1. Clean the Truck Wheels and Tires Routinely
Clean and shiny truck wheels aren’t just for looks – they also improve the truck’s safety and performance. Thoroughly rinse and wash the wheels and tires to remove dirt, grease, grime, and brake dust. While you’re cleaning, also check the condition of the truck wheels to see if they’re in good shape.
2. Remove Oxidization and Restore Truck Wheel Shine
Oxidization on truck wheels should be removed to restore shine and improve wheel safety. A method for removing heavy oxidization and restoring the shine on truck wheels is to run them through an automated wheel polishing machine like the VIS-Polish.
3. Use a Machine to Polish and Buff Truck Wheels Between Regular Services
A polishing machine is more effective and efficient at polishing and buffing truck wheels than doing it by hand. Polishing and buffing wheels between full wheel services will ensure your wheels maintain their shine. For example, the VIS-Polish is a portable on-wheel polishing machine that polishes and buffs a wheel in just 10-15 minutes so.
4. Pay Attention to the Bead Area
Cleaning and maintaining the bead area of your wheels will ensure a good seal on your tires and minimize air leaks. Damage to the bead area can cause premature tire wear or failures, so inspecting and servicing this area routinely will help extend the life of your wheels. The VIS-Polish offers a bead cycle feature that can service this area during your routine aluminum wheel maintenance service.
5. Take Care of Your Tools
Not only should you maintain your truck wheels, but also the tools you use to clean, polish, and buff them. Regularly inspect your tools and order replacement parts and supplies when necessary to keep your tools in working order.
6. Inspect Truck Wheels Before Trips
Before every trip, inspect the truck wheels and other systems to ensure that they’re ready for the road. A pre-trip routine will help you detect and address issues before heading out on the road. An effective inspection should include: checking the tire pressure, examining tread wear, and inspecting rims for cracks and damage.
The Right Equipment to Maintain Truck Wheels
The equipment you use to clean and maintain truck wheels should always be reliable and effective. VIS has been in the transportation industry for over 20 years and offers a wide range of cleaning and safety products for heavy-duty trucks such as the VIS-Polish, VIS-Check, BrakeMate™ Brake Maintenance System, and more to ensure truck wheels look and perform at their best.
Heavy-duty trucks and buses require regular wheel polishing to ensure wheel-end safety and a professional appearance, which is why choosing the right wheel polishing company is one of the most important decisions you’ll make for your trucks’ wheels. Furthermore, partnering with a reputable company that manufactures quality wheel polishing equipment or provides comprehensive wheel maintenance services can improve your wheel polishing efficiency and lower operating costs. Here are five considerations to keep in mind when choosing a wheel polishing company for your fleet, service shop, or transit facility.
An essential factor when choosing a wheel polishing company is how much experience it has. If the company has been in operation for less than a year, then it will still be working out the kinks with manufacturing, operations, etc. Additionally, a younger company may not know how to handle any wheel polishing issues that may arise which is why you should select an experienced company as it’s more likely to have “seen it all.”
2. Rigorous Standards
The wheel polishing company or system you select should have rigorous standards in place for its products, training, safety protocols, and customer service. If purchasing wheel polishing equipment, the manufacturer should emphasize adherence to quality and safety standards to ensure your system will perform correctly and efficiently. If looking for a wheel polishing services provider, look for a company that has a culture of providing exceptional services and value as well as one that owns quality wheel polishing equipment.
3. Industry Associations
Similar to the previous point, look for a wheel polishing company that is a member of an industry association. Being in an industry association shows that the company is staying on top of important, ever-changing issues, trends, and legislation that are impacting the industry. For example, VIS is an active member of associations such as – the American Public Transportation Association (APTA), Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA), and ATA Tech and Maintenance Council – because we’re committed to safety, advocacy, and education for the transportation industry.
Whichever wheel polishing company you choose, make sure it has a great reputation. You can find reputable wheel polishing companies by getting referrals from other shop or facility owners, searching online for reviews and testimonials, checking the Better Business Bureau, and researching what wheel maintenance equipment they use. While knowledge and experience are important, they won’t count for much if the company doesn’t have a reputation for manufacturing quality products, providing exceptional services, or satisfying customers. After all, if the company’s products and services are unreliable, then your vehicles’ and drivers’ safety are put at risk.
5. More Than Polishing
When it comes to providing wheel polishing service, a company should be offering more than just polishing. Your wheel polishing company should be inspecting for fine cracks, elongated bolt holes, metal corrosion, bent rim edges, and OOS violations. Any valuable wheel polishing service should include proper and thorough inspections to ensure wheels don’t just look great but are safe on the road.
Wheel Polishing Equipment You Can Trust
Before you choose a wheel polishing company, keep these five considerations in mind to make the process easier and protect your truck and bus wheels from subpar products and services. Your vehicles’ safety and wheels are too important to leave to chance. At VIS, we’ve been in the transportation industry for over 20 years and manufacture automated polishing equipment like the VIS-Polish and VIS-Shine to make aluminum wheels shine like new and perform optimally.
Polished aluminum truck wheels not only look great, but they’re also an essential component of a wheel maintenance routine. Aluminum wheels will dull over time due to road dirt and other contaminants which means they need to be polished frequently to keep them shiny. With these five tips, your aluminum truck wheels will glisten brightly and be better protected from corrosion and brake dust buildup.
1. Prep or wash the wheels.
Cleaning aluminum truck wheels prior to polishing will remove superficial dirt to check the condition of the wheels. Using an aluminum wheel cleaner, rinsing with a hose, or pressure washing loosens dirt, grease, grime, and brake dust on the wheels. However, avoid using strong detergents as well as alkaline or acidic cleaners since they can damage the aluminum’s surface and leave dull areas. Make sure the wheel is at ambient temperature before applying cleaning chemicals.
Try cleaning inside the hand holes and around the stud holes for even better results. Use a soft-bristle brush (not a wire brush) while applying water to scrub the surface, hand holes, and stud holes. Then rinse the wheels off before moving to a sanding or polishing process. A thorough pre and/or pre-wash is crucial for successfully polishing aluminum truck wheels.
2. Remove oxidization.
If you discover oxidation, which happens when bare aluminum wheels are exposed to oxygen and water, then it will need to be removed from the truck wheels before polishing. One way to remove heavy oxidization is to run the aluminum truck wheels through the VIS-Polish, an automated wheel polishing machine The VIS-Polish system’s automated sanding cycles remove heavy oxidization quickly and easily to restore the wheel’s shine.
3. Use a machine to polish and buff.
Reduce time and labor spent polishing and buffing aluminum truck wheels by using a machine to do most of the hard work. Machine polished wheels can be done in a fraction of the time it takes to do it by hand. Also, polishing by hand presents many health hazards due to exposure to aluminum dust, continuous vibration, and exposure to moving parts. A machine can reduce or even eliminate these health hazards.
4. Dry the wheels.
Water spots are a quick way to ruin a perfectly polished shine so make sure to gently dry the aluminum truck wheels and wipe away any brake dust. Avoid cross-contamination by using a separate microfiber towel that is designated only for drying and wash it separately from other towels.
5. Maintain and inspect aluminum wheels between service times.
Once wheels have been sanded and polished, keeping them clean and shiny will allow for easier checks on the wheel condition. A portable on-wheel polishing machine like the VIS-Shine is a maintenance and upkeep tool that helps keep the shine of your polished wheels between maintenance service times. It is able to clean, polish, and buff a wheel in 10-15 minutes which is much less time than doing it by hand and allows for quicker, more thorough inspections.
For All Your Wheel Polishing Needs
VIS offers polishing equipment and cleaners to transform aluminum truck wheels and extend their life. We manufacture and distribute a wide range of products for the trucking and transportation industry such as the VIS-Polish: Automated Aluminum Wheel Polishing, VIS-Check: Undercarriage Diagnostic System, Squirrel: Wheel Safety Device, VIS-Shine: On-Truck Wheel Polishing, and BrakeMate™ brake maintenance system.
Royal Truck & Trailer started in 1970 as a small, family-owned facility in Dearborn, Michigan. After 50 years and 3 generations of family ownership, they have grown into one of the largest new and used semi-trailer suppliers in the Midwest and now operate at an impressive 10 acre facility.
Ken Bumgardner started his journey in the truck and trailer business as a young boy doing tasks around the Royal Truck & Trailer shop. From sweeping floors to cleaning bathrooms, Ken used this time to learn more about the family business and the trucking industry. Now with over 20 years’ experience, Ken is now President and part owner of Royal Truck & Trailer. “Royal was started by my grandfather, Roy Bumgardner in 1970 as a two bay service facility in Dearborn, Michigan. Since then, we have become a leader in the industry for service, parts, trailers and truck bodies,” Ken told VIS. “[Now] we have three additional locations in Michigan: Wixom, Warren, and Gaylord.”
But that growth doesn’t come without challenges. Ken commented that sometimes the biggest challenge is finding employees who share Royal’s vision for the future. “Our team members are the best people in the business. Everyone really cares about making Royal Truck & Trailer a better place.” That “vision” is what leads Ken and his team to constantly look for new business opportunities.
Royal Truck & Trailer Invests in VIS-Polish
“Back in 2009, my father Carl Bumgardner and sister Julie Igielski (both owners and management of Royal), went down to the Mid-America Trucking Show where the machine was on display. Carl thought the VIS-Polish would offer a great new service to our customers, and was he right!” The investment was so worthwhile that Royal purchased an additional VIS-Polish unit a few years later. “The VIS-Polish machine has brought additional business in the way of tire retailers who utilize our services for their customers,” Ken said. “In addition, it allows us to offer another service to our customers and helps us to diversify our products and services. It gives them more options for what we can offer them.”
Ken explains how diversification is one of the keys to Royal Truck & Trailer’s continued success. “We offer a wide range of services for our customers. Just like you can visit a large superstore and get everything you need from groceries to car accessories, we want to be a one stop shop for all of our customers’ needs. We offer convenience mixed with expert knowledge.”
Thanks to that commitment to service, the future looks bright for this family business. Royal Truck & Trailer was recently named a finalist for Truck Parts & Service Magazine’s Distributer of the Year. Ken told VIS, “My hope for Royal Truck & Trailer is that we continue to expand. Our goal is to be one of the largest trailer and body dealers around. Not just geographically, but also in what we offer our customers. The VIS-Polish is just one more option we can offer!”
Royal Truck & Trailer is based out of Dearborn, MI with other locations throughout Michigan in Gaylord, Warren, and Wixom. To learn more about their offerings visit royaltrailersales.com. To learn more about the VIS-Polish and other products in the VIS family visit vischeck.net or call 800-837-5145.
A wheel polishing service is crucial to keeping truck wheels clean and free from the abrasive effects of brake dust and other substances that cause pitting and overall wear. Wheel and rim polishing not only enhances the good looks of a truck, but also helps prevent long-term damage by removing layers of corrosion and ensuring regular inspections.
Automated Wheel Polishing Services
Automated wheel polishing services has become a standard way of getting truck wheels polished. The VIS-Polish system stands out as the leading machine by not just offering polishing but by giving a complete refurbishment to help identify cracks and faults in a truck wheel. Catching these problems early is key to maintaining the health of the truck wheels. Routine polishing and inspection helps improve the overall productivity of a truck’s wheels and ensures the safety of the truck, preventing road accidents and air leaks long before they can otherwise be detected.
Enhanced Image and Increased Safety
Scratched or pitted wheels can be polished at a fraction of the cost that it takes to replace the wheels, and in a matter of minutes. Machine polished wheels are less likely to be stopped for inspections and give out an air of professionalism which is ultimately good for the truck owner’s reputation.
Heavily oxidized aluminum wheels can now get a new lease of life and shine with systems like VIS-Polish. Truck owners who are accustomed to using a wheel polishing service to keep their wheels up to scratch will agree that in the long run, wheel polishing cuts down on a huge amount of maintenance budget.
Boosted resale values, incredible good looks and a truck that is certified safe – what more could a truck fleet owner want?
Truck wheel maintenance can be a challenge, requiring constant supervision. With the revolutionary VIS-Shine and VIS-Polish systems, it is now easier than ever to have polished aluminum wheels for trucks.
Easy Wheel Polishing
The only machine of its kind in all of America, the VIS-Shine is an on-truck wheel polishing system that gives you polished aluminum wheels in a matter of mere minutes. Capable of polishing 19.5”, 22.5” and 24.5” sized wheels, this system can be easily carried around in a truck and used to clean, buff and polish the aluminum truck wheels to a mirror-like shine. Regular maintenance and upkeep are extremely important for ensuring the longevity of truck wheels.
Sometimes, truck wheels can be so heavily oxidized that a simple cleaning and buffing will not do. The VIS-Polish machine is a highly sophisticated and fully-automated machine that not only polishes, but fully refurbishes and restores aluminum truck wheels, identifying cracks and faults before they get a chance to develop further. This makes the VIS-Polish a good investment for businesses and fleets looking for polished aluminum wheels.
The Advantages of Polished Aluminum Wheels
There are several reasons why a truck fleet owner should pay careful attention to the condition of his truck’s wheels. For one, a set of well-maintained and polished aluminum wheels prevents long-term damage to the wheels, and reduces the risk of road accidents. A good set of wheels also increases the resale value of the truck. Most importantly, maintaining the set of wheels on the truck results in huge savings in terms of maintenance budgets.
There is something immensely rewarding about a set of gleaming, mirror-like aluminum wheels and with systems like VIS-Shine and VIS-Polish, every truck owner can now take pride in his fleet of trucks and their polished aluminum wheels.
Aluminum is a soft metal that responds quite well to polishing and has potential to shine like a chrome. Aluminum wheels have a tendency to oxidize with a high risk of damage from road debris and brake dust. Such brutal treatment makes the wheel susceptible to easy wear and tear. To prevent the wheel from getting oxidized, it is very important to get the aluminum wheel cleaned and polished. Polished aluminum wheels help in extending the lifespan of the wheel thereby increasing the efficiency and performance of the vehicle. Refurbishing helps in maintaining the shine of the wheels ensuring better efficiency.
Polished Wheels are Safer Wheels
Polished wheels help with the early identification of cracks and weaknesses in the wheel.
Well maintained wheels have a lower risk of on-road incidents and accidents.
Removing rust and oxidization stops further deterioration of the wheel.
Clean wheels ensure a more secure seal and fit of tires which reduces tire problems/incidents.
Polishing wheels removes sharp edges that can damage tires or cause injuries to the driver/service technician.
Polished and cleaned wheels allow for more accurate measuring of wear around the surface and edges which can help identify issues sooner and have worn wheels removed from service before they cause an incident.