Pre-trip inspections have been on my mind a lot since coming to work for PTI. I’ll get back to that in a minute. I really want to talk about a recent home inspection first.
Pre-Trip Inspection Of A House
My castle curator and are in the process of buying a house. Our kids are grown and it’s just the two of us. We’re looking for a rather modest home in a great neighborhood. Since I’m on the road 3 to 4 nights a week, location is even more important.
We recently found a house in a very desirable neighborhood. We wouldn’t call it our dream home. The kitchen and bath were beyond outdated, and it had a few features we weren’t wild about. But the location made us look past everything. We knew we could do the required updating down the line.
We made an offer on the house, and it was accepted. After putting the earnest money down and signing a huge stack of papers, we booked a home inspection. We were thrilled at the prospect of living where we never thought we could. We were also pumped about the dream kitchen we would design and build.
The inspection turned out to be a train wreck in our eyes. Although I spotted a few smaller issues when we first looked at the house, I never saw the real problems. These were big problems, structural issues that I wasn’t prepared to deal with. Needless to say, we passed on the house and we’re back to square one. Oh, and we are out 300 bucks.
When we find the next house we like, I will be more prepared. I will have a flash light, gloves and a copy of that last inspection to remind me where I need to look.
Inspecting Your Truck
I’m not a trained home inspector, nor am I a mechanic. But I was trained to inspect a truck. Most likely, so were you. We all knew this was part of the job when we started our careers, yet we so often skip it. That mistake could cost you a whole lot more that 300 bucks.
- Our inspection is required by law. If the truck is unsafe and someone is injured, it’s your ass.
- It’s required by your employer. I know of several companies that will fire you on the spot for a trailer decoupling and other mistakes that should never happen.
- It wastes money. If you’re an owner operator, it’s your money. Not catching a flat inside dual could cost you 2 tires. Not catching a couple of burnt out lights could cost you a fine.
PTI And The Pre-Trip
We’ve all been there. You pick up a loaded trailer and it has issues. An expired inspection, bad breaks, etc. The last guy took the wimpy way out and stuck you with it.
PTI has no shop of their own, but the trucks are quite well maintained. Nearly every truck is parked at a shop when you’re home. A quick email, check it in when you get back into town, and it’s repaired in time to make your next run.
If you have problems on the road, this network of shops will not only get you up and running, you will get priority in nearly every shop.
The Bottom Line On Inspections
You are the first line of defense when it comes to inspections. Whether it’s your truck or not, do your job and make sure it’s right. If you work for a fleet, just remember it’s their job to repair. It’s your job to inspect. You’re their eyes and ears for finding and reporting the problems.
And if you work for one of those dirt bag companies that won’t fix your truck, find a new job. It’s just not worth the trouble.