Fleet managers failing to take truck tyres seriously

April 2020 – New research* by Goodyear Tyres has revealed that fewer than three-quarters (71%) of fleet managers feel tyres are a ‘very important’ area of investment, compared with fuel (81%) and repairs and maintenance (86%).

The research, which was conducted as part of a wider report into the transport industry**, also found that only a quarter (25%) of respondents have a single brand supply deal with a tyre manufacturer. Surprisingly, only one in five (21%) of these are motivated by lower total cost, and fewer still by financial predictability (11%). The majority (83%) of fleet managers who have a single brand supply deal cite the main benefit is improved reliability in operation; a crucial element to any fleet.

David Howe, Commercial Sales Manager at Goodyear, comments: “It’s interesting to see how few fleet managers have a single brand supply deal, given that such a deal will often allow access to a commercial support network, which will help to perform maintenance. Our own network - TruckForce - specialises in the complete lifecycle management of commercial truck tyres, including preventive maintenance, replacement, regrooving, and retreading. The network spans across the whole of the UK, with 13 hubs in total, which are individually responsible for different regions.”

“TruckForce is part of Goodyear Total Mobility, an end-to-end fleet offering that includes support from ServiceLine24h roadside assistance and FleetOnlineSolutions – Goodyear’s Internet-based fleet management system. This offering can provide vital assistance to fleets, as it comes with premium service, helps to keep drivers safe, fleets on the move and total cost of ownership down.”

Correct tyre maintenance plays a large role in keeping fleets moving. Surprisingly though, the research found that only one-in-three (33%) fleet managers – or those responsible for keeping commercial vehicle fleets compliant – check their tyre pressures on a daily basis. It seems that tread depth checks are deemed more important, with over half of respondents (55%) checking their tread depth daily.

David Howe continues: “Our TruckForce technicians conduct full tyre checks for customers on a quarterly basis, but we would always recommend that drivers visually check their tyre pressures at the start of each shift. This is because, if too high or low, incorrect pressures can result in rapid and irregular wear, or even blowouts, risking a significant amount of downtime and possible accidents. Running tyres at the correct pressure will lead to better wear across the tyre and even lower fuel consumption, due to better rolling resistance and handling.”

“The use of technology such as Tyre Pressure Monitoring Systems (TPMS) can also help to prolong the tyre’s lifespan. Our own TPMS uses an in-tyre sensor to gather data and Goodyear’s unique G-Predict technology alerts the fleet manager to any tyre-related hazards via a mobile app. This predictive algorithm technology means managers can proactively take action to rectify any problems and prevent incidents from happening, avoiding prolonged downtime.”

“To put it simply, the research indicates that this kind of maintenance isn’t always at the top of most fleet managers’ list of priorities. But the cost savings and efficiency improvements that it can bring to the table mean that the higher up the agenda it is, the more fleets will benefit.”