How to Prepare Your Truck (and Yourself) for Winter

For most truck drivers around the US, cold weather is just around the corner. The elements that come along with winter can make a truck driver’s job a bit more challenging. Knowing what to expect from the harsh conditions and preparing ahead of time will keep you safe (and warm) this winter season!

Create Winter Maintenance Routine

Make this as specific to yourself and your truck as possible. A few things to consider as you create your winter maintenance policies are your vehicle and equipment, where you’re headed, the weather you’ll encounter, the amount of time you spend on the road, and the number of loads you plan to run on your route.

The longer your drive, the easier it will become to develop a maintenance routine. You can build onto your policies as you become more familiar with your truck and route!

Address Truck Maintenance in Advance

As the winter months are approaching, be sure to check in with parts of your truck that may be affected by the cold weather. This includes your fuel filters, battery, cooling system, tires, lights, chains, windshield wipers, along with others. If you’re not sure something will make it through harsh conditions, consider replacing it ahead of time.

It is also vital to inspect fluid levels and refill as necessary. By planning ahead and routinely checking these parts of your truck, you are far less likely to become stranded in the harsh elements.

Invest in an Engine Block Heater

Remember, cold temperatures will affect more than your fuel and fluid levels. It can sometimes be tricky to get your truck started, creating a huge roadblock in your tight schedule. One solution to this issue is to invest in an engine block heater! This useful tool keeps your truck’s engine at a warmer temperature and will make it easier to start.

Switch to Winter Blends

Most truck drivers know that diesel fuel can turn into a gel during colder winter conditions. Luckily, there are special blends of fuel designed just for winter that have higher cetane levels, making it easier to start your engine and keep it warm. Pro tip: keep anti-gel additives on hand and add them whenever you fuel up to prevent any issues.

Consider swapping your other fluids for versions that perform better in winter weather. For example, you can change the fluid in your windshield wipers to a cold-temperature blend.

Restock Your Emergency Supplies

You never know what lies ahead on the open road. Prepare for the worst-case scenario, especially when you could be stranded in freezing temperatures. You should always keep general supplies on hand, but here are a few specific suggestions for those bitter cold months:

  • Heavy winter coat / gloves
  • Winter boots
  • Heated blankets
  • A battery-operated radio / batteries
  • Food and bottled water
  • First aid supplies
  • Flashlight / flares
  • Snow shovel

These additions to your emergency kit are sure to keep out the cold and help you out of a tough situation! The winter elements bring new challenges for truckers all around, and this includes more than just truck maintenance. Here are a few things to consider when trying to maneuver icy road conditions!

If you’re interested in becoming a professional truck driver, consider completing your CDL training with United. Contact us today if you’re ready to learn more!

Updated November 2, 2023

What United Truck Driving School is Thankful for

Thankful for You

This year, United Truck Driving School has much to be thankful for. From our staff to our awesome instructors, we have had such an incredible year working with so many bright and intelligent men and women. To our current students and graduates, what a year we have had with you! We are so grateful to you for picking United for your CDL training. Each one of you has such a special place in our hearts. You are the reason we get up and go to work each morning. We appreciate your confidence in us as a school and trusting us to be a part of reaching your career goals.

We are excited to continue working with our new students and the students to come and helping them achieve their trucking goals! All of us at United would love to help you get started with your CDL training and make 2019 the year you begin a new career. If you are interested in earning your CDL with United Truck Driving School, contact us today.

Again, from the entire United Truck Driving School family, we wish you and yours a very Happy Thanksgiving!

Trucking: The Perfect Career for Military Veterans

Finding a job can be difficult for anyone, but this can be an especially difficult task for military veterans. After serving in the military it can be hard to decide where exactly your career will go next. You may not even know what kind of job you’d like or how you can apply the skills you gained while serving.

Good news⏤the trucking industry is the perfect transition for military veterans! Becoming a professional truck driver is a solid move for veterans looking to re-enter the workforce as the two industries align perfectly in several ways.

Transferable Skills

Much like in the military, a trucker’s decisions are imperative to not only their safety but also the safety of those around them. Paying close attention to details can make all the difference in both the military and on the road.  Depending on the specific CDL job, professional truck drivers may spend a lot of their time alone. This requires them to be self-starters who are responsible enough to deliver the goods in good condition and on time.

Trucking companies will also expect their drivers to be reliable and good communicators. Reliability and communication are key skills veterans gain while serving. In addition to transferable skills, job security is another similarity between the military and the trucking industry. There is always a need for more soldiers just as there is always a need for more drivers.

The Veteran Advantage

A lot of heavy equipment is used in the military which can give veterans a huge advantage in trucking. A military CDL may allow you to waive the civilian CDL skills test! The Military Skills Test Waiver is an option for veterans based on their previous experience. This can save applicants time and money when applying for their CDL.

Even if you don’t have experience driving in the military, you still have a leg up as a veteran entering the trucking industry. At United Truck Driving School, we offer a military program that accepts most VA benefits including the Post 9/11 GI Bill®, Vocational Rehab, and My CAA!


The transition from military to trucking is smooth as the two industries are similar in a lot of ways. Our veterans give their all and deserve the best. Our goal at United is to improve your skills through proper CDL training to get you on the road to a new career!

If you’re a veteran interested in making your way into the trucking industry, contact us today! In addition to financial assistance, veterans have access to job placement. Make the transition from military to trucking in just 4 weeks at United!

GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).  More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government website at