As a long-haul trucker, it pays to be prepared for just about anything that happens on the open road. Whether you find yourself stranded by the side of the road or at a truck stop, you want to have the tools necessary to get your truck back on the road. Here are a few tools that should be a mainstay in your rig.
1. First Aid Kit
A good first aid kit is an absolute must-have item for any trucker. If you get a cut or scrape while on the open road, pulling in to the next pharmacy you see might not be an option. The ideal first aid kit should come with plenty of dressings, bandages, gauze pads, antiseptic wipes, and ointments. Other tools that can come in handy in your first aid kit include tweezers, scissors, non-latex gloves, and an oral thermometer.
2. Basic Hand Tool Kit
Having a basic set of box wrenches and a ratchet wrench with both standard and metric sockets can come in handy for just about any emergency repair or quick fix. Your hand toolkit should also come with an assortment of screwdrivers, hex keys, and pliers.
3. Pocket Knife of Multitool
Pocket knives or multitools can come in handy for just about any task, whether it’s opening up a plastic package or trimming a coolant hose. When choosing a pocket knife, look for one that offers a comfortable handle, a high-quality blade, and a good warranty.
4. Work Gloves
You only get one pair of hands, so it’s worth protecting them from the scrapes, heat, and grease buildup that often comes with a typical truck repair. A good pair of mechanic’s work gloves can save your hands some wear and tear.
These gloves come in a variety of designs and colors, but consider getting gloves with fluorescent or reflective features for added nighttime visibility. You should also invest in an extra pair or two just in case you misplace your original pair.
5. Jump Starter
While a good set of jumper cables can come in handy, you might not always have someone who can help give you a jump start. That’s where the portable jump starter comes in. A heavy-duty jump starter can give your truck’s batteries enough of a boost to start your truck and get back on the road again.
6. Tire Air Gauge
A tire air gauge is yet another must-have tool that no trucker should be without. When shopping around for a tire air gauge, choose one that’s able to read up to 160 psi since most truck tire pressures range from 100 psi to 120 psi. Again, buy quality…you won’t regret it.
7. Rechargeable Headlamp
Working in the dead of night without the right lighting is not only a pain but also potentially dangerous. When you need both hands for a repair, using an ordinary handheld flashlight can make that repair much harder. A high-quality rechargeable head-mounted light can take all of the frustration out your nighttime repair, leaving your hands free to tackle your repair.
When choosing rechargeable headlamp, be sure to choose one with a long-lasting LED and settings for a high beam, low beam, and strobe function. Don’t forget to make sure it includes a 12-volt car charger and/or USB charging cable for convenience.
8. Tire Thumper
A tire thumper offers a faster but less scientific way to check your tire pressures. When given a good whack, truck tires make a distinctive sound when aired up at the correct pressure. If you’re pressed for time, you can use your tire thumper to quickly check all of the tires on your truck without missing a beat. You can also use your tire thumper as a self-defense weapon, which could come in handy when making repairs in dark, isolated areas.
Being able to diagnose electrical problems on the side of the road can help get you back on the road faster. You can use your trusty pocket multimeter to track down battery drains and electrical shorts. When choosing a multimeter, make sure it’s able to read continuity and resistance as well as voltage and current.
10. Laser Infrared Temperature Gun
A laser infrared temperature gun can come in handy for checking components that you suspect are overheating. For instance, you can safely check tire and wheel bearing temperatures from a distance. When you’re not on the road, you can also use it to check meat temperatures on your barbecue grill, among other things.
11. Fuel Filter Wrench
If you’re stuck on the side of the road due to a clogged fuel filter, having a fuel filter wrench on hand can help cut out the need for a service truck dispatch. Just make sure your fuel filter wrench is large enough to handle the filters your truck uses.
12. Vise Grips
You never know when you’ll need a pair of vise grips. A pair of locking vise grips can help temporarily pinch off leaking lines and provide enough grip to break stubborn nuts and bolts, among other uses.
Having a well-stocked toolbox is just one of the ways to prepare for your next journey. You also need the right truck. Visit Arrow Truck Sales to find the right semi-truck for your long-haul needs.