Whether you’re a new food truck owner or a seasoned vet, the importance of year-round maintenance can’t be overstated. A food truck is no small investment, and regular maintenance is the best way to keep it operating long-term. While it may seem overwhelming, maintaining your food truck isn’t all that complicated, and can be broken down into a few main categories and tasks.
Regular Inspection and Cleaning
By performing regular inspections for your truck and kitchen, you can catch any problems before they become more serious. During each inspection, check all parts of the truck closely, from the engine components to all kitchen appliances. As you search, keep an eye out for leaks, loose wires, or any signs of wear and tear. Don’t forget to inspect the propane systems and exhaust hoods for potential safety hazards.
It’s also important to regularly clean the kitchen, floors, and appliances because of how quickly they can get dirty when preparing food. Watch out for cooking grease, which can build up in parts of the kitchen and cause a serious fire hazard. As for the exterior, a simple wash once a week can go a long way to keep your truck presentable and make a lasting impression on customers.
Your kitchen equipment is one of the most important aspects of your food truck business. Make sure that all appliances work well and are in good condition. Regularly inspect ovens, grills, fryers, and refrigerator units, and replace any malfunctioning or outdated equipment as soon as possible.
To avoid costly breakdowns or accidents while on the road, keep your tires in top condition. Over or underinflated tires can negatively affect your truck’s handling and fuel efficiency, so check tire air pressure regularly. If your tires are wearing out or losing tread, don’t hesitate to replace them. You should also rotate tires at least once a year.
Engine Fluids and Filters
Keep up to date with routine auto maintenance like oil changes, transmission fluid changes, and filter replacements. This will help extend the life of your truck’s engine and prevent breakdowns and expensive repairs. Always follow your truck manufacturers’ guidelines when it comes to fluid types and frequency of changes.
Exhaust System Maintenance
The exhaust system on a food truck is often overlooked, but it’s crucial to the truck’s functionality and safety. Make sure to keep your exhaust hood and ventilation system clean of grease buildup. Not only does exhaust maintenance keep the kitchen safe, it prevents unpleasant odors from spreading in the interior of your truck.
Stay Up To Date on Health Codes
Like any food-related business, you need to follow all health codes so you can pass inspections without issues. Make sure you understand your local requirements, which may vary depending on where you’re operating your business. Sometimes health codes are changed and updated, so pay attention to any new rules or laws that apply to you and your business.
Check Digital Components
Regularly check digital components on your food truck like POS systems, mobile ordering, or accounting software, making sure they’re all fully updated and working properly. If you have internet in your truck, take a look at the router and do a network test.
Perform Regular Safety Checks
Last but certainly not least, check all safety features like fire extinguishers and emergency exits, completing any maintenance tasks required by the manufacturer. If you use propane on your truck, perform leak tests and if needed, have a licensed technician do repairs.
Bring Your Dream Food Truck To Life
At Legion Food Trucks, we specialize in designing and building custom food trucks from the ground up. Get in touch with us today to learn more about how we can help bring your dream truck to life. In the meantime, feel free to check out our free resources like the Food Truck Equipment Checklist or our startup guide, Getting Started in the Food Truck Business.