Every day in America, 6,500 brand new pickup trucks are sold. If you break down those numbers, that’s 130 trucks sold every single day, in every single state across America. Even when you don’t count the incredible business pre-owned car lots are doing on trucks, that’s still a lot of vehicles. Pickup trucks have gone from being only working vehicles to being everything from the family man’s vehicle, to the commuter vehicle, to the modern version of the sports car (really).
But no matter what you use them for, your truck is still a working vehicle. Over its life, it will probably haul lumber or brush, move furniture, plants, or mulch for the garden. It will be the go-to if there’s a new BBQ to pick up or a buddy to help out with his new couch, and it will definitely be the vehicle of choice on camping trips, ski trips and runs down to the beach.
Your truck can run for a long time, and plenty of them do, but not without a little help. Apart from routine and suggested maintenance, here are a few things we often suggest to help keep your truck running and looking great well into its old age.
Never miss an oil change
If your truck is under dealer warranty, this will be a no brainer since you will have to get the oil changes done or risk voiding your warranty. But if your truck is pre-owned or out of warranty, that doesn’t mean you get a free pass on oil changes. Check your owner’s manual to confirm how often it’s recommended you get your oil changed and buy the best quality oil you can for the job. If you have an older truck with higher mileage, change your oil filter as well when you change your oil.
Get a bed liner
A truck bed liner (or simply a bedliner) is a product that shields the inner-side of your truck’s bed from wear, dirt and damage. This will not only help with the appearance of your truck, but will also immensely help with resale value if you go to sell your truck down the line. Happen to move a lot of cargo? Truck bed liners also provide a skid-resistant surface for cargo to stay in place.
They come in spray-on or drop-in formats. Aside from price, the difference between these two formats is installation. For a drop-in, it’s as easy as get and go, but for a spray-on, you’ll have to find a reputable installer you trust.
Consider your driving conditions
Routine maintenance and suggestions can only go so far. In the end, you know the most about your truck and it’s important to consider what kind of wear and tear you put it through. Do you commute with your vehicle every day to and from work and then take it out to hills to go mudding on the weekend? Do you carry heavy loads or drive in less than ideal air conditions? The way you use your truck will inform the way you care for it. Some driving conditions need special maintenance and different schedules. Talk to your mechanic to get a better feel for how your truck needs to be maintained based on your driving habits.
Let it breathe
In order to function at its peak, your truck’s engine needs to breathe and it needs to breathe clean air. Air filters can become clogged with dust and contaminants and choke your engine, making your engine struggle and age faster and not run at its peak performance. For regular, in-town use, swap your filter every 15,0000 to 30,000 miles. However, if you are someone who loves to take the dirt roads, consider swapping your air filter much more often. Cabin getting stale? Your in-cabin air filter, while not as important mechanically as your engine air filter, can help your truck’s cabin smell a lot fresher if you swap that regularly too.