Trucks Need More Repairs in Winter - KFYRTV.COM - Bismarck, ND - News, Weather, Sports

Trucks Need More Repairs in Winter

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During a North Dakota cold snap, some cars just won't start without a jump. But for truck drivers, that can just be the beginning of a series of  problems.

It's not just ice and snow that can take a truck off the road. Fuel and engine troubles have been sending more tractor-trailers to repair shops.

There haven't been many empty spots at truck stops the past few weeks. And that cold is keeping service shops busy, too.

"Fuel will gel up, it gets a waxy base to it and it won't pass through the fuel filters so it starves the engines out and the engines will either lose power or die totally," says service manager Les Heid.

Drivers have to use winter blended diesel fuel to avoid that gelling process. But that fuel isn't always readily available.

"I fueled up yesterday, when I got to the truck stop I didn't realize they only had number two fuel, so I gotta buy additive to put that in. It's just a little extra hassle, extra expense," says truck driver Barry Kroells.

And that extra cost is starting to add up.

"Trying to keep your truck running all the time which cost me about $500 for the last five days.  If you turn your truck off, your tank and your diesel start gelling," says a truck driver from Dallas.

But service centers say it's not just semi-trucks that are coming into their shops.

"We have school buses, refuse trucks, garbage trucks, propane delivery trucks," says Heid.

Heid says Trucks of Bismarck has worked on more than 100 vehicles per week since temperatures dropped below zero.

"These temperatures, it's unsafe to stay in the vehicle if your engine doesn't run, you can't keep warm," says Heid.

Heid says Trucks of Bismarck is repairing vehicles all the way from Stanley and Minot.
And they expect this trend to continue throughout the winter.

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