Tire Management Systems: Your Report Card On Performance

Unless you want to pick tires for your vehicles based on gut feelings, intuition or data gathered by your peers, a good recordkeeping system to track tire performance and costs in your fleet is vital to making wise tire decisions. And whether your records are on paper or on high-powered tire-specific software – such as Goodyear’s TVTRACK – is up to you.

A good recordkeeping system will store all the data you need to determine the actual costs associated with the tires in your fleet, according to Tim Miller, Goodyear’s commercial tire marketing communications manager. "TMC (Technology and Maintenance Council) has a great Recommended Practice, RP 208, which details all the essential parameters to measure in order to accurately analyze tire related costs," Miller says. "It’s something we highly recommend fleets follow."

While most of the initial costs in a tire-tracking program are obvious — new tires, casings and retreads and repair materials — there are other related costs that must be accounted for. Those include the labor associated with tire management and repairs, tire replacement costs and the cost of downtime associated with tire issues that occur.

"Finally, warranty credits for new tires and retread and repair warrantable conditions must be documented and figured into the overall costs of tire-related expenses," Miller says.

All of these costs make tires, for most fleets, the No. 2 operating expense behind fuel. 

Paper Versus Computer Tracking

Miller says there is nothing wrong with keeping paper records of when tires were installed on a vehicle, when they were removed and associated tire costs. "If you manage a handful of vehicles, paper records might work," he says. "But when you’re managing a fleet and the type of vehicles range from local or regional delivery to long-haul, the complexity of keeping records ‘the old-fashioned way’ becomes next to impossible.

"You should be proficient in spreadsheet analysis that will record all the data and make the calculations you need to determine the total costs and, even more important, the cost per mile of every tire in your fleet," adds Miller.

If developing a complex spreadsheet is not in your skill set, you may wish to invest in software to help your cause. "There are several software packages available, some better than others," says Miller. "Goodyear offers two software products that can aid in the quest for better information – TVTRACK and TireValuCalc, both available at Goodyear dealers or by clicking on "Fleet Management Tools" in the "Shortcuts" section of
www.Goodyear.com/truck." 

Information-Based Decision Making

Good tire-tracking software allows fleet managers to document tire related information (mileage and cost) and calculate cost-per-mile in several ways. "With Goodyear’s TVTRACK program, information is entered for each vehicle, with mileage recorded when new tires (or retreads) are installed," says Miller. "Down the road, costs associated with these tires are also documented — treadwear is measured and entered into the program when tires are 25 percent, 50 percent and 75 percent worn as well as when they have been removed from service."

Although cost-per-mile can be calculated and shown graphically at any time by brand or tire type, it is best to wait until tires are at least 50 percent worn to draw any preliminary conclusions.

"Better yet, wait until a significant number of tires are out-of-service before using the data to help make major purchase decisions," suggests Miller. "This gives you a more accurate picture of what’s happening with your costs."

Once tires are out of service, Miller suggests that data gathering continue through scrap tire analysis. "This type of data can be captured by TVTRACK and summarized results can be shown with various charts and graphs," he says.

"Knowing why tires are removed, and the age and number of retreads you are getting on casings, indicates whether your tires were properly maintained. For example, if tires are wearing out due to scrubbing or curb damage, you may wish to compare different types of tires and use software to document whether you’ve found a better solution."

According to Miller, tire-tracking software is not intended to track every tire on every vehicle in a fleet. "It is intended to be a tool to aid in the tire decision-making process by providing a way to sample performance from a selected group of vehicles within the fleet," he says.

Another software tool offered by Goodyear is TireValuCalc (TVC), which uses data gathered by TVTRACK or other sources to calculate total costs associated with running different tire combinations. "For example, a fleet maintenance manager may want to know whether to run new tires or retreads on drive axles," Miller said. "Or they may want to see how a regional tire design performs compared to a long-haul tire.

"TVC calculates the costs for each scenario, as well as fuel costs. Fuel economy differences among various tire combinations and varying wear rates help determine which tires will deliver the overall lowest cost of operation." 

Predicting Tire Costs Though Information

Keeping good records and possessing data that predicts tire wear can help lower fleet costs. Knowing which tires are most cost effective on a fleet’s trucks can assist future tire purchase decisions.

"What’s more, knowing the wear rates of tires allows you to anticipate peaks and valleys in the replacement tire purchase cycle," says Miller. "This could help with budget planning in the months and years ahead."

Tires And Vehicle Specs

A fleet comprised of various vehicle types – or trucks having different engines – must be considered in tire analysis. For example, a high-torque engine will wear out drive tires faster than engines with a lower torque rating. If you don’t evaluate tires on one type of vehicle or evenly split the test across an equal number of each vehicle type, your results will be meaningless.

Once you have completed a test, you can make intelligent decisions about what tires work best in your fleet. "How would you know this if you don’t have data to back up your theory?" Miller asks. "Tracking software allows you to evaluate tire performance of different sets of vehicles in order to help you make intelligent tire choices based on facts, not gut feelings." 

Putting Data To Work

Tire performance between different company locations or terminals can be tracked in the same way as performance on different fleet vehicles.

"Tracking software allows fleets to pinpoint problem areas or establish best practices based on outstanding performance in one or more locations," says Miller. "Information is power, and once you have data compiled, you can put it to work for you to make intelligent tire decisions.

"Our belief is that a well-run tire program transcends buying quality tires. Tires should be viewed as a system. It’s tread and compounding, the casing, maintenance practices and tracking to determine what works best. When your job is to stay profitable through low cost-per-mile and tires are one of your highest operating costs, it’s imperative to track your numbers. It’s the only way to a solid bottom line." 

Online Only: Recommended Practices Manual

Click here for TMC’s Recommended Practices Manual.

Leave a Reply

More From Finance/Operations...
PP&L CAST 2015 intros

April 22, 2015

6 Breeding Companies Serve Up New Varieties At Pacific Plug & Liner

Pacific Plug & Liner’s theme this year, Labyrinth, a conservatory of the world’s most captivating plants, was perfectly topped off (pun intended) with fascinators for the women and newsboy caps for the men. The PP&L team dressed their part to act out the gothic “conservatory of the world’s most captivating plants.” Truly, the displays looked like they practically popped out of a catalog, and the costumes were a nice touch. Retailers take heed, the fully merchandised displays at Pacific Plug & Liner are worthy of emulating. We’ll let the pictures tell the story of all the fabulous variety introductions presented at  Pacific Plug & Liner’s 2015 California Spring Trials, where Cultivaris, Cohen Nurseries, Histil Nurseries, Jaldety Nurseries, Southern Living/Sunset Collection and Pacific Plug & Liner all highlighted their 2016 introductions.  

Read More
Speedling 2015 CAST intros

April 22, 2015

Speedling Inc. Presents New Varieties From ABZ Seeds, Hem Genetics, Thompson & Morgan, Vista Farms & PSI

You name it, we saw it at Speedling's California Spring Trials location in San Juan Bautista, where five companies showed off their new introductions for 2016.

Read More
PittMoss on Shark Tank

April 22, 2015

PittMoss Wins On Shark Tank

Mont Handley, president and CEO of PittMoss, appeared on ABC’s Shark Tank on April 17 to try to get the “sharks” to invest in his peat moss alternative. Three investors from the TV show contributed $600,000 to PittMoss for a 35 percent stake in the company. Check out this clip from ABC’s website in which Mark Cuban, Kevin O’Leary and Robert Herjavec discuss getting on board with the product. PittMoss is an alternative to sphagnum peat moss, made up of a mix of proprietary additives and recycled paper rescued from landfill space. Handley founded the Pittsburgh-based company in 1994. What started as a small experiment grew into a full-fledged business with the help of funding provided by an EPA SBIR grant and Pittsburgh’s Idea Foundry. Today, PittMoss is available to commercial greenhouses and nurseries from Michigan to Maine to North Carolina, with plans to grow. To learn more, visit PittMoss’ website, or check it […]

Read More
Latest Stories
PittMoss on Shark Tank

April 22, 2015

PittMoss Wins On Shark Tank

Mont Handley, president and CEO of PittMoss, appeared on ABC’s Shark Tank on April 17 to try to get the “sharks” to invest in his peat moss alternative. Three investors from the TV show contributed $600,000 to PittMoss for a 35 percent stake in the company. Check out this clip from ABC’s website in which Mark Cuban, Kevin O’Leary and Robert Herjavec discuss getting on board with the product. PittMoss is an alternative to sphagnum peat moss, made up of a mix of proprietary additives and recycled paper rescued from landfill space. Handley founded the Pittsburgh-based company in 1994. What started as a small experiment grew into a full-fledged business with the help of funding provided by an EPA SBIR grant and Pittsburgh’s Idea Foundry. Today, PittMoss is available to commercial greenhouses and nurseries from Michigan to Maine to North Carolina, with plans to grow. To learn more, visit PittMoss’ website, or check it […]

Read More
Syngenta logo

April 15, 2015

Syngenta Names Chris Freeman Senior Key Account Manager…

Chris Freeman is the new senior key account manager for Syngenta Flowers, Home & Garden's Commercial Sales business in the Americas, effective March 2015. Freeman, who joined Syngenta in 2006, carries more than 25 years of experience in the agriculture and floriculture business.

Read More
Lake Buchanan_LCRA

April 10, 2015

USDA Designates Areas Of West And Southwest As Drought …

The ongoing drought has resulted in disaster area designations in counties across nine Western and Southwestern states, including Texas, where some reservoirs are at or near historically low levels.

Read More

April 9, 2015

Altman Plants’ Online Cactus Shop Shows Strong Sa…

Altman Plants recently opened its new Cactus Shop, an online retail store that sells a variety of cactus and succulents. The store is a take-off of Altman’s original wholesale business, as the company started as a mail order catalog.

Read More
Dummen

April 8, 2015

Dümmen Group Welcomes Jim Devereux And Andrew Konicki T…

Dümmen group recently announced the addition of Jim Devereux and Andrew Konicki to its team. They are the newest members of the Key Account and Broker Support team for Dümmen, and will be responsible for building, developing and maintaining current broker and grower customer relationships.

Read More
Gov._Jerry_Brown_California

April 8, 2015

California Institutes First Ever Statewide Mandatory Wa…

California Gov. Jerry Brown announced April 1 that, for the first time in state history, action will be taken to implement mandatory water restrictions, with the ultimate goal of reducing water usage by 25 percent. As Californians are pushed to conserve more, growers will need to think about how demand for products will be affected.

Read More
DNA-logo

March 31, 2015

DNA Green Group Will Acquire Rijnplant

DNA Green Group and Riknplant have finalized DNA Green Group's acquisition of Rijnplant, meaning that the breeding and propagation activities in pot and cut anthurium, bougainvillea and heliconia will transfer to DNA Green Group.

Read More
AFE scholarship_Ryan Dickson

March 25, 2015

AFE Educational Grant And Scholarship Application Deadl…

Apply now for American Floral Endowment (AFE) scholarships or educational grants. Applications can be found online. For educational grants for 2015-2016, applications must be submitted no later than June 1. Scholarship applications are due May 1. AFE will award $40,000 in scholarships for 2015.

Read More

March 23, 2015

UF/IFAS Appoints Joseph Albano As Director Of Mid-Flori…

The University of Florida's Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) has a new directors for its Mid-Florida Research and Education Center (REC) on Apopka, Fla. The role has been filled by Joseph Albano, a research horticulturist from the U.S. Department of Agriculture with more than 25 years of experience.

Read More

March 17, 2015

Pike Nurseries Implements Employee Stock Ownership Plan

Independent garden retailer Pike Nurseries has announced it will become an employee-owned company. Pike Nurseries management has combined with its sister corporation in California, Armstrong Garden Centers, to operate under an established Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP).

Read More
GrowIt! App Wins Gold At Design100 2014 US Mobile & App Design Awards

March 10, 2015

GrowIt! Mobile App Now Available For Android

The mobile app GrowIt! Garden Socially can now be used by gardeners with Android-based smartphones. Now available on the Google Play Market, GrowIt! helps users find plants to fit their lifestyle and connect them with other local gardeners.

Read More

March 4, 2015

Second Annual GreenhouseConnect Will Bring Growers and …

Following a successful inaugural event in Tampa last fall, Greenhouse Grower has announced the dates of its second annual GreenhouseConnect: October 26-29, 2015. Representatives of an expected two dozen leading greenhouse operations from across the U.S. will join senior-level suppliers at Rancho Bernardo Inn in San Diego for several days of one-on-one strategic meetings, a growers-only roundtable, informational sessions and a variety of networking events.

Read More

March 4, 2015

Maryland Green Industry Associations Unite

The Maryland Nursery and Landscape Association recently announced that it is expanding its reach to include the greenhouse industry, meaning it has become The Maryland Nursery, Landscape and Greenhouse Association (MNLGA). The change comes as a result of the planned dissolution of the former Maryland Greenhouse Growers Association and the invitation for those members to join the existing and renamed association.

Read More
IPPS Sharing Plant Production Knowledge Globally Logo

February 25, 2015

International Plant Propagators Western Region Sets Ann…

The annual meet for the International Plant Propagators' Society (IPPS) Western Region has been set for this September. It will take place September 23 to 26 in Modesto, Calif., and will include learning sessions, tours to local nurseries, a research poster display and poster presentations, various networking opportunities and an awards banquet to close the event.

Read More
myers industries Lawn and Garden Logo

February 24, 2015

Myers Industries, Inc. Lawn And Garden Business Sold, N…

The management of Myers Lawn and Garden Group, along with Wingate Partners V, L.P. have recently acquired the Myers Industries, Inc. Lawn and Garden business. The new company is named The HC Companies, and will continue as a North American leading provider of horticulture containers supplying the greenhouse, nursery and retail markets.

Read More
american-hort-logo

February 17, 2015

AmericanHort Announces New Board Members

AmericanHort recently announced the election of new officers and members to the board of directors. Each will assume their positions on the board during Cultivate’15, July 11 to 14 in Columbus, Ohio.

Read More
All American Selections

February 17, 2015

All-America Selections Elects New Officers, Names New J…

While meeting during the Flower and Vegetable Seed Conference in Tampa, Fla., hosted by the American Seed Trade Association, All-America Selections elected new officers for a two-year term. Read on to learn about the new officers, as well as all of the new judges that were added in 2014.

Read More
Greenhouse Grower.com on your desktop, on your phone, on your tablet

February 11, 2015

GreenhouseGrower.com Relaunches With Responsive Design …

Greenhouse Grower magazine, the nation’s leader in profits, production and education for greenhouse growers, announces the launch of its completely redesigned website, GreenhouseGrower.com. The new design is the product of direct user feedback and GreenhouseGrower.com analytics, and includes responsive design for ease of mobile use.

Read More