Report Shows Roadside Mechanical Repair Costs Continued to Increase in 4Q2019

Report Shows Roadside Mechanical Repair Costs Continued to Increase in 4Q2019

Report Shows Roadside Mechanical Repair Costs Continued to Increase in 4Q2019

Update from TMC & FleetNet America Showed Fifth Straight Quarterly Jump in Costs


The cost of mechanical roadside repairs are going up, according to the most recent information from TMC/FleetNet America’s fourth quarter Vertical Benchmarking report. In fact, the average cost of roadside mechanical repairs exceeded $500 dollars for the first time since the program began benchmarking in October 2017.

Fleets from three different verticals (Truckload, LTL and Tank) participated during the fourth quarter. This was the second quarter for LTL and Tanker participation. The LTL and Truckload verticals increased the miles they were able to run between roadside failures when compared to the previous third quarter. The Tank vertical’s miles between breakdowns, however decreased 27 percent when compared to Q3.

Additionally, tires, brakes, lighting, power plant and cooling systems accounted for the majority of all roadside repairs —64 percent— which was consistent with the third quarter of the 2019 results.

The report found possible reasons for the rising cost of a mechanical repair included higher labor costs due to the industry’s tech shortage; higher costs to work on newer, more complex equipment; and increased costs of parts. The report showed tank fleets experienced the highest cost of mechanical repairs in the fourth quarter with cost of repairs 41 and 87 percent higher than the cost of repairs compared to LTL and Truckload's vertical average cost or repair.

The miles run between breakdowns varied widely by industry vertical. The Truckload vertical experienced the fewest miles between breakdowns (14,333), meaning they had the most frequent roadside repairs, while the LTL vertical enjoyed the most (57,012). In each vertical one fleet ran significantly more miles between roadside repairs than their vertical average. In the Truckload vertical the best-in-class operated 41,404 miles between unscheduled roadside repairs, or 188 percent better than their vertical.

The Vertical Benchmarking Program is a benefit for TMC fleet members and a partnership with FleetNet America. In addition to the executive summary, which is available to TMC fleet members, carriers that participate by sharing their data are provided an analytic tool that allows them to drill into their data, comparing it to the industry average.

The program is a strategic collaboration between TMC/ATA and FleetNet America, an ArcBest Company, and is open to TMC fleet executive level members and FleetNet America customers. The analytics provided via the program will be cumulative and non-fleet specific. For information about the TMC/FleetNet Vertical Benchmarking Program, visit

By providing leadership support and opportunities to collaborate, TMC helps members develop the industry’s best practices that address the critical truck technology and maintenance issues that have the greatest impact on truck fleets. For more than 60 years, TMC’s member-driven Recommended Maintenance and Engineering Practices have been setting the standards that help trucking companies specify and maintain their fleets more effectively. Follow TMC on Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook.

American Trucking Associations is the largest national trade association for the trucking industry. Through a federation of 50 affiliated state trucking associations and industry-related conferences and councils, ATA is the voice of the industry America depends on most to move our nation’s freight. Follow ATA on Twitter or on FacebookTrucking Moves America Forward


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