How to Find a Good Semi Truck

May 5, 2009

While many trucks may look good on the outside, and even have sleepers and accessories that seem grand, the most important thing about a used semi-truck is the way it runs, and if it can take the rigors of the road that you are about to put it through.

Whether you're shopping for a big rig or you're examining the trucks for sale owned by a company that you're thinking about driving for, mechanics should be key. As a trucker, and especially as a truck buyer, you'll need to learn to prioritize. While the epitome of all trucks can certainly be made, you'll have to pay quite a lot to get it. Most truckers can't afford to have their wants and needs satisfied in every category. For this reason, checking out how well the truck does what it is designed to do should be your first move when looking to buy or drive a truck.

Of course, this means that one of the first things you will focus on is the engine. You'll want to know what kind of transmission it is, especially if you are one of the few who has learned on an automatic transmission. Though most semi-trucks have manual transmissions, as this is much more convenient for the trucker, automatic semi-trucks are available, and if you're not looking for one, you need to be sure you are not getting one.

When you discover that the truck you are looking at has a manual transmission, there are still questions you need to ask. Mainly, you'll need to find out how many speeds the engine can carry. Ranging from nine to eighteen speeds, transmissions with more speeds allow truckers to have more control over the vehicle and make certain maneuvers easier.

After the engine, truckers need to consider safety features like lights and brakes. If you're looking at a used truck, you'll want to make sure all of the lights are intact. Also, you'll need to make sure that the truck has the minimum number of lights needed to be legal, in addition to more if you feel that this is necessary. For breaks, truckers should be sure that the lines connecting breaks from truck to trailer are not broken. Furthermore, some truckers will want to see if the truck contains a jake break, or a device that helps truckers slow their trucks.

Finally, after determining that engine and safety equipment meet their standards, truckers will want to look at those factors that are not as important. For instance, truckers may then consider amenities in the trucks' cabs, such as thermostat gauges, and other indicators that make trucking easier. In addition, truckers may want to see if the truck has other safety equipment or comfortable sleepers.

Although truckers can get their perfect truck either to own or to drive, most don't believe it is worth the financial strain. By getting their priorities in order, drivers can make sure that they drive away with the truck that is best for them.

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