If you operate a large truck on a commercial basis, you will need to try and maximise each payload so that you can be as efficient as possible. It can often be tempting to add extra goods to the vehicle to try and squeeze a little bit more out of your day, and while this may feel as if it is acceptable, it may nevertheless cause issues on the road. What problems could this generate, and how can you overcome them?
Leaf Spring Suspension
Your truck may well be fitted with a leaf spring suspension system on the rear, as this is a tried and tested solution for heavy vehicles like this. It's designed to put up with a great deal of abuse, but those springs will be rated to carry a certain load and no more.
If you live in a part of the country that is known for its winter weather, then you should pay particular attention to those leaf springs during a regular service. You need to remove any corrosive salt or other materials used by road maintenance crews and watch out for impact damage as well.
However, you will also need to inspect the springs to see if they are still standing up to the abuse. If you are in the habit of overloading, then don't be surprised if you find that one or more of the springs has radial shear. You may also find that the spring eyes at each end have distorted with time and they will not be able to perform as they should.
Much will depend on the actual condition, of course, but if they are not too badly damaged, then you may be able to improve their efficiency by adding a set of helper springs or another leaf to the pack. This will give you a stiffer ride and make it easier for you to haul heavier loads, but remember that you must always keep within the maximum GVWR for the vehicle.
If your springs are showing major signs of fatigue or have begun to sag, then you will need to replace them completely. Don't be tempted to add helper springs or a new leaf to the pack as a 'patch up', as this could be dangerous and will inevitably be a false economy. Instead, a supplier of products like Fuso truck parts and an engineer so that you can get a brand-new assembly for the vehicle.
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