It costs an average of $10,054 to drive a pickup truck annually, making it one of the most expensive vehicles to own, the AAA reports. Routine care and maintenance is an essential part of pickup truck ownership. Keeping your truck in good condition will extend its lifespan, prevent costly repairs, and preserve its value over time.
Protect the truck bed
Being continually exposed to the elements and used for storage, your truck bed experiences substantial wear and tear over time. A bed cover is a great way to protect your pickup and belongings, as well as keep moisture out of the truck bed. Covers are typically made from vinyl or plastic and have a number of locks, which securely attach it to the truck. Make sure the cover you choose is compatible with your truck’s bed liner. It should be simple to install without it being necessary to drill into the truck bed. Also consider the level of maintenance required; ideally, your cover should just need washing with water and air drying.
Regular oil changes
Dust, dirt, and debris will begin to contaminate your engine oil over time, which decreases its ability to function optimally. It’s therefore important to change the oil regularly—consult your owner’s manual to find out how often this should be done. Clean oil lubricates and protects vital engine parts so they can continue to operate efficiently. If you often drive off-road, at prolonged slow speeds, or tow or carry heavy loads, you may need to change the oil even more frequently. Also change your oil filter regularly to keep it free from dust, dirt, and debris that can further damage the engine.
Continual exposure to corrosive elements (like debris, water, and salt) causes rust to form on your truck. Rust can be damaging and difficult to remove, so it’s important to make sure your truck has continual protection against it. Wash your truck at least once every couple of weeks and follow-up with a coat of wax. Pay attention to any scratches or cracks, so you can fix them with cavity wax before rust has the chance to take hold. Add a protective undercoating to the underneath of your truck bed—this is a neglected area particularly prone to rusting.
Regular truck maintenance takes just a little effort, but it’ll keep your truck in excellent working condition. Protecting the truck bed, changing the oil, and preventing rust are the best ways to preserve the longevity of your truck.