A stock photo of documents needed to start a trucking business.

Are you thinking about being an owner/operator? Consider these things.

Should I become an owner/operator?

Something we talk about a lot at Patriot Truck Sales is the importance of truckers to our country. Almost without exception if you eat it, drink it, wear it or plug it in, that item spent some time in the back of a semi-trailer. If somebody visits our facility and is asking themselves, ‘Should I become an owner/operator,’ we have quite a few thoughts on the subject. There are a few great things about being an owner/operator that we think people need to consider. There is no doubt that being your own boss and running any business is going to be a challenge, but there is something special about the open road being your office. Let’s take a look at why this might be the career for you. Read the rest of this entry >>

A stock photo of a truck delivering gasoline to a gas station.

Adding endorsements to your CDL could equal significant bumps in pay

Is getting a HazMat license worth it?

The idea that an owner/operator is only making money when their truck is hauling cargo is pretty straightforward. What separates successful operators from the rest is finding ways to command higher per mile wages. That could mean having various types of trailers like vans or refers. However, adding more endorsements to your commercial driver’s license can also be a path to making more money. So, is getting a HazMat license worth it? Certainly, hauling hazardous materials like chemicals or racing fuel will come with some perks, but there are also some other issues an owner/operator will need to consider. Patriot Truck Sales reached out to some of our industry contacts for a little help with the subject. Read the rest of this entry >>

A stock photo of a snow-covered road.

Are you ready for winter driving in a tractor-trailer?

Winter Driving Tips for Owner/Operators

We are just a few days away from the official first day of winter. However, it appears Mother Nature is well ahead of schedule judging by the less-than-pleasant weather we have been seeing impact many parts of the country. Since many Patriot Truck Sales customers are relatively new to the professional trucking industry, our team of product experts thought it would be helpful to discuss from winter driving tips for owner/operators. Driving through snow and ice in a semi isn’t anyone’s idea of a good time. Drivers who aren’t accustomed to these conditions can find them intimidating. Having a plan and knowing what to expect ahead of time can take some of the stress out of the equation. Read the rest of this entry >>

A stock photo of out of focus car lights at night.

These tips will help you more safely drive at night

Professional trucker tips for driving at night

Despite all of the advances our society has made, tractor-trailers continue to play an integral role in our nation’s economy. Nothing would get anywhere if it weren’t for people like you doing your job. One skill that comes with driving experience is safely navigating roads when the sun goes down. We reached out to some of our long-time customers to put together this list of professional trucker tips for driving at night. Many of these are just common sense, but it’s also important for everyone to get the occasional reminder. Let’s take a closer look at what our team found in the course of their research. Read the rest of this entry >>

A stock photo of an Electric Logging Device.

Don’t throw those old paper graph logs just yet

What do I do if my ELD malfunctions?

If an owner/operator hasn’t installed an electronic logging device in their tractor, time is running out to make the technological leap. With all of the importance placed on these devices, drivers around the country have been asking the same question, ‘What do I do if my ELD malfunctions?’ The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has published a few guidelines about the steps that can be taken in the short term. However, it’s very important to point out that it looks like very leeway will be given to drivers who don’t keep their ELDs up to date and functioning properly. If yours goes on the fritz, here is what you can do. Read the rest of this entry >>

A photo illustration of a graph overlaid on a pile of money.

Expenses need to kept in check in order for a business to thrive

How can I reduce my trucking business expenses?

Regardless of almost any other factor, the most common reason any business has to close up shop is that there isn’t enough money on hand to keep operating. When an owner/operator is doing their books, it can often feel like more money is flowing out of the business than flowing into their pocket. If you’re looking for an answer to the question, ‘How can I reduce my trucking business expenses,’ a few Patriot Truck Sales got together to reach out to some of our successful customers to see how they keep control of bills. Let’s take a look at what they found. Read the rest of this entry >>

A stock photo of a mechanic holding a wrench in a repair shop.

What can I do to make sure my truck completes every trip?

Best Tips for Avoiding Tractor Breakdowns

The axiom, ‘Time is money,’ should be the prime operating principle for any owner/operator. Nothing will cost more time or money than a breakdown. To be sure all truck drivers have or will experience some kind of mechanical failure or a tire blowout at some point in their career. It’s just the nature of our business. However, there are some proactive steps drivers can take to keep their rig in the best possible condition. A few members of the Patriot Truck Sales product expert team reached out to some of the service experts in our repair shop to ask them about their best tips for avoiding tractor breakdowns. Let’s see what they had to say. Read the rest of this entry >>

A photo of cargo loaded into a van trailer before it's delivered.

Some items may have shifted during transit, here’s how to avoid that

How do I avoid shifting cargo in my van trailer?

There are a lot of hazards drivers face when they’re working. While many of them can be hard to avoid, making sure your cargo is properly secured is something that a driver can and must control. In fact, at the end of the day, Department of Transportation regulations say that the driver is ultimately responsible for securing their cargo – even if the trailer was loaded by someone else. Something that all drivers should be asking before they pull away from a loading dock is, ‘How do I avoid shifting cargo in my van trailer?’ Patriot Truck Sales reached out to a few of our customers and industry professionals to pick up a few tips and tricks. Let’s take a look at what we found. Read the rest of this entry >>

A photo of a semi hauling cargo down the road.

Owning your own truck isn’t much good if you don’t have work

How do owner/operators find loads to haul?

When someone is an owner/operator, they are not only the company’s best driver, they are also the bookkeeper and the lead mechanic. Most importantly they are responsible for finding work. So, who do owner/operators find loads to haul? There are a few ways to find cargo that needs to be hauled, some will work better for some people than other methods. Regardless of which method a business owner chooses to find work, it’s always worth considering some alternative ways to find loads to haul. After all, a truck is only earning money when its wheels are turning. A few Patriot Truck Sales product experts spoke to some industry experts to find this information. Let’s see what they found. Read the rest of this entry >>

A stock photo of blood in vials for testing.

As a driver you will be drug tested, do you know the rules when you get picked?

Rules for drug or alcohol testing for truck drivers

Having a commercial driver’s license is quite different from having a regular driver’s license. One of the major differences between having a CDL and civilian license is random drug testing. The rules for drug or alcohol testing for truck drivers carry serious consequences because of the potential for tragedy if someone is using either substance while driving. Drivers can be called in for a random drug test even if they aren’t working that day and missing or delaying the test can cause the driver to have their license suspended or revoked entirely. Here are a few common questions new drivers have about the process. These are just general questions. Always follow your company’s rules or what your state law requires. Read the rest of this entry >>