When drivers bring their trucks for servicing at the local Kenworth dealership, a service technician may run a single diagnostic test, or a battery of tests, to determine a single root cause. But with a Kenworth Class 8 truck equipped with Kenworth TruckTech+ Remote Diagnostics, the technician may be able to skip those diagnostic tests and start work immediately on solutions, by relying instead on real-time diagnostic data from the truck’s engine control module.
“That greater visibility can help us maintain uptime, saving us potential revenue losses of upwards of $1,000 per day, when we have an incident or when a dash lamp is illuminated on one of our trucks,” said Josh Laughlin, maintenance specialist at Central Oregon Truck Co., which operates 242 T680s.
“Kenworth TruckTech+ Remote Diagnostics increases our uptime by helping to pinpoint and handle service needs faster. With the data TruckTech+ collects, our dispatchers work with Papé Kenworth to produce solutions that may allow us to complete shipments, and schedule the servicing for when the driver returns to home base, or somewhere along the way when the driver is off-duty,” Laughlin noted.
Kenworth TruckTech+ transmits vehicle diagnostics 24/7 to the fleet’s maintenance facility at its headquarters in Redmond, Oregon, and to Papé Kenworth. Company and dealer technicians and managers can view that information through the PACCAR Solutions web portal to help them determine how or when a specific issue should be addressed.
But perhaps more important than the potential savings of time and money, Laughlin said the company maintains its reputation for on-time delivery performance, which is top priority for company managers, drivers and dispatchers. Central Oregon Truck Co. hauls loads for major manufacturers of building materials in the lower 48 states and Canada.
“Being on time with deliveries in the construction and building industry is crucial because contractors may be relying on shipments to arrive at certain times at their delivery points so that projects stay on schedule,” Laughlin said. “If the deliveries are late, our customers may be facing huge penalties for holding up the projects.”
Phil Taylor, vice president of maintenance for Central Oregon Truck Company, said the company and its drivers also greatly value the impact Kenworth TruckTech+ has had on driver productivity and performance.
“Since TruckTech+ notifies us of potential issues as they unfold, we can plan any necessary maintenance around our drivers’ schedules and maximizes uptime,” Taylor said. “That way our drivers can continue on their way quickly. That can have a big impact on their paycheck and their satisfaction.”
When one of the company’s Kenworth T680s was traveling under load in Canada in late March and early April, the system began alerting the company and the local Papé Kenworth dealer through email notifications about a potential fuel pressure issue. Brian Tate, Kenworth TruckTech+ Service Management program coordinator for Papé Kenworth, monitored the situation and as the number of email alerts increased, he contacted Laughlin and discussed options. Tate said by examining the truck’s service records, he could see that the fuel system was just about due for its next scheduled service.
The TruckTech+ Service Management platform, powered by Decisiv, provides Tate and service staff members at Papé Kenworth and other Kenworth dealerships detailed chassis information, parts catalogs, service bulletins, plus warranty and repair histories to help them more quickly and efficiently diagnose, estimate and complete service work.
“Based on the telematics data from TruckTech+ and our experience with the fuel systems, I was able to make the recommendation to continue driving, drop the load, and plan to service the truck at a more convenient time later that week,” Tate said. “Central Oregon Truck Co. decided to assign the driver a load that would allow him to return to his home base in Denver, where the truck could be brought to a dealership in the Kenworth dealer network for servicing during his 34-hour restart.”
Justin MacDonald, a service technician with Papé Kenworth - Redmond, at left, is shown with a Central Oregon Truck Company Kenworth T680 and COTC maintenance shop foreman Travis Seeger.
As the week wore on, the code alerts from the truck ECM became more frequent. To be on the safe side, Papé Kenworth’s Tate recommended that the truck go in for service before it reached Denver. “The truck’s fuel system was serviced and the problem was resolved,” Tate added.
Since its introduction two years ago, Kenworth TruckTech+ Remote Diagnostics has quickly become an integral part of efforts by Kenworth and its dealers to help customers like Central Oregon Truck Co. maximize truck uptime by streamlining service and repair processes. More than 30,000 Kenworth trucks are equipped with Kenworth TruckTech+ and have traveled a combined 1.5 billion miles.
“Kenworth TruckTech+ is a great tool for our company,” Laughlin said. “Anytime we can plan on when our trucks will be serviced rather than deal with the scheduling emergencies when trucks must be serviced, that’s a critically important benefit to our company’s operation.”
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Kenworth Truck Company is the manufacturer of The World’s Best® heavy and medium duty trucks. Kenworth's Internet home page is at www.kenworth.com. Kenworth is a PACCAR company.