They say the devil makes work for idle hands. We can say the same for idle fleets, in that if your fleet idling time is high then you will certainly end up paying the price in higher costs – and that is the devil’s work.
So how can you make the most out of your vehicles as a fleet manager or driver on this score? In a previous post we already covered how to reduce fuel costs. As well as how to make the most out of fleet tracking. And reducing your fleet idling time is one way to do just that – and more. It may not be a simple task, for a variety of reasons. But let’s explore what can be done.
In order to make any changes, you must first understand when your vehicles are actually idle. For example, a driver may leave the engine running a lot on purpose. Or they may not even notice they have left the engine running.
Let’s examine firstly, all the situations that you and your drivers might idle unconsciously or on purpose.
Defining fleet idling time
There are quite a few scenarios whereby you or your drivers may have vehicles in idle mode. These are the most common ones in our book.
When in a hurry
You or your drivers may often leave a vehicle’s engine running when you are in a hurry and are on a short stop for any reason (delivery, pickup, call). You know you don’t have so much time so you try to save it by keeping the engine running, leave the vehicle to do a task at the point of contact and then get back in and drive on.
The force of habit
Yes that’s right. Even if you are not in a hurry, it’s easy to fall into the idling trap just because you are used to it. Cases that this might happen is when for example you happen to stop somewhere for a short period (and who’s to define how short that time is?). Minutes can pass quite easily in this way without you or your drivers even realizing it. This, however, is a crime against good fleet idling time practice! Move away from bad driving behaviors and you’ll be well on your way.
Warming up your engine during winter
This is one for the old school devotees out there. Why? Because what was once really necessary is not at all today! It’s useless, in fact. Due to electronic ignition technology you no longer need to warm up your engines during cold days and leave it idling for a while before starting out on your journey. Which means you can focus more on your safe winter driving techniques.
Why should reduce idling
So now we reminded you about the scenarios which effect your fleet idling time, let’s have a look at why you should reduce it. And yes, you guessed it, the main reason is cost savings.
- Use less fuel
- Reduce maintenance costs
- Extend vehicles lifecycle
Avoid accidents or theft which can happen if one of your vehicles is left on the street with its engine running.
Be kind to Mother Earth
- Eco-friendly/environmental friendly behavior. While your top priority is your business and you’re always looking for ways to make it better, it’s also a good opportunity to help the environment. Less fleet idling time means less emissions which pollute the atmosphere.
- Your drivers will be more careful and more responsible concerning how they use your vehicles. They may also find reasons to develop relevant habits when using their own vehicles.
Not convinced? See what law and order says
If you’re not aware anti-idling regulations that have been enacted then shame on you. According to Wikipedia: “Various states and localities have passed laws pertaining to idling. Some of the laws are more strict and stringent than others.”
You and your drivers need to be in the know concerning these restrictions.
The Solution is…
Yes, you guessed it, the solution to your problem is right here: Veturilo! How? You can view total fleet idling time (in minutes) during a trip for each one of your vehicles. And now of course you’re wondering how this is going to help you reduce idling? It’s simple, you show your drivers the feature and explain to them all of the above reasons for why they should reduce idling.
There you go. How to reduce fleet idling time solved!