HGV Maintenance Costs: Assessing Expenses and Best Practices

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Based on the data from the RHA’s annual survey on cost movements (Haulage Cost Movement 2022), the calculations indicate that there was a substantial overall increase in costs. Excluding fuel costs, the calculated increase amounts to 11.6% based on a 44-tonne articulated HGV vehicle and trailer. However, when factoring in fuel expenses, this percentage rises to 19%. There are various aspects that have affected this cost increase including UK inflation, cost of tyres, cost of fuel, and insurance.

According to the RHA report, members expressed significant dissatisfaction with the quality of work and delays experienced during servicing, with complaints extending to both main dealers and independent service centres. While quality was a notable concern, the association also highlighted an average annual increase in repair and maintenance costs. Following a 10% rise from £11,155, the costs escalated to £12,271 per year.

However, proper maintenance is a vital aspect of keeping Heavy Goods Vehicles (HGVs) running smoothly and efficiently. It ensures the safety of drivers and other road users while minimising the risk of costly breakdowns and repairs. However, understanding the maintenance costs associated with HGVs and implementing effective practices can be equally important. By assessing and managing these costs effectively, you can unlock a multitude of benefits for your fleet and business.

Understanding HGV Maintenance Costs

When it comes to HGV maintenance expenses, several key components contribute to the overall cost structure. Understanding these elements is crucial for assessing expenses and implementing cost-effective maintenance practices.


Parts encompass the various components and consumables required to keep an HGV in good working condition. This includes items such as filters, belts, fluids, tires, and other mechanical or electrical parts. The cost of parts can vary depending on the make and model of the vehicle, availability, and quality. Opting for genuine or high-quality parts may initially incur higher expenses but can result in long-term cost savings by reducing the need for frequent replacements.


Labour costs are associated with the skilled technicians and mechanics who perform maintenance and repairs on HGVs. This includes tasks such as routine inspections, servicing, repairs, and diagnostics. Labour costs are influenced by factors like hourly rates, complexity of the work required, and the reputation and expertise of the service provider. Efficient and skilled labour can save time and money by ensuring that maintenance tasks are performed accurately and efficiently.

External Services

HGV maintenance often involves outsourcing certain services to external providers. These services may include specialised repairs, inspections, diagnostics, or equipment calibration. Outsourcing can be a cost-effective option when specific expertise or equipment is required. However, the costs associated with external services should be carefully considered and balanced with the benefits they provide.

Each of these components directly affects the overall cost structure of HGV maintenance. By understanding how each component impacts the cost structure, fleet managers and operators can make informed decisions. This knowledge empowers them to optimise maintenance expenses and implement best practices that strike a balance between cost and quality, ensuring the longevity and reliability of their HGV fleet.

Factors Affecting HGV Maintenance Costs

Maintenance expenses for HGVs can be influenced by various factors that impact the overall condition and usage of the vehicle. Understanding these key factors is essential for assessing maintenance costs accurately.

Vehicle Age

The age of an HGV plays a crucial role in maintenance costs. Older vehicles tend to require more frequent repairs and replacements as wear and tear accumulate over time. Components such as engine parts, suspension systems, and electrical systems may degrade, leading to higher maintenance expenses. Additionally, older vehicles may have discontinued parts, which can increase the cost and availability of replacements.


The mileage or distance covered by an HGV is another significant factor impacting maintenance expenses. The more miles a vehicle has travelled, the more strain it has endured on its components. Higher mileage can lead to increased wear and tear, requiring more frequent replacements and repairs. Components such as tires, brakes, and engine parts may need more attention and replacements as mileage increases.

Usage Patterns

The usage patterns of an HGV, including the type of routes, road conditions, and loads carried, can impact maintenance costs. HGVs operating in rugged terrains or on poorly maintained roads may experience higher wear and tear, resulting in increased maintenance requirements. Similarly, vehicles used for heavy-duty hauling may require more frequent inspections, repairs, and replacements of components like suspensions, transmissions, and exhaust systems.

Maintenance History

The maintenance history of an HGV plays a crucial role in determining future expenses. Vehicles with a history of proper and regular maintenance tend to have lower overall costs as proactive measures prevent major issues. In contrast, neglected maintenance can lead to costly breakdowns and extensive repairs. Keeping detailed maintenance records helps in tracking the vehicle’s maintenance needs, identifying recurring issues, and planning preventive measures effectively.

Environmental Factors

Environmental factors, such as exposure to extreme temperatures, humidity, and corrosive elements, can impact maintenance costs. Harsh environments can accelerate the deterioration of components, leading to increased repair and replacement needs. Regular inspections and protective measures can help mitigate the impact of environmental factors and reduce maintenance expenses.

By considering these key factors that influence maintenance expenses fleet managers can anticipate maintenance needs, budget effectively, and implement preventive measures. Proactive maintenance planning can help minimise costs, optimise vehicle performance, and extend the lifespan of the HGV fleet.

Best Practices For Cost-Effective Maintenance

Regular Preventive Maintenance

Scheduled maintenance tasks are of utmost importance when it comes to managing HGVs effectively. By adhering to manufacturer-recommended service intervals and inspections, fleet managers can proactively address:

  • Potential issues
  • Preventing major repairs
  • Minimise downtime
  • Extend vehicle lifespan
  • Ensure safety and compliance
  • Cost savings

Overall, scheduled maintenance tasks are a proactive approach that can pay off in terms of reliability, longevity, and cost-effectiveness.

Driver Training & Vehicle Care

The role of drivers in minimising maintenance costs for HGVs is crucial. Encouraging drivers to perform regular vehicle inspections before and after each journey is essential for identifying potential issues early on. In addition to, encouraging drivers to report early signs of issues, no matter how minor they may seem. Drivers should be trained to conduct visual checks of key components, such as tires, lights, fluid levels, and signs of leaks.

By promptly reporting any observed abnormalities or concerns, such as unusual noises, vibrations, or warning lights, drivers can contribute to the timely resolution of problems and prevent further damage. Finally, investing in driver training programs and fostering a culture of vehicle care empowers drivers to become proactive partners in the maintenance process. Leading to improved performance, reduced downtime, and cost savings for the HGV fleet.

HGV Leasing With Mac’s Truck Rental

Assessing maintenance costs and implementing best practices are vital steps for optimising HGV maintenance and reducing expenses. By gaining insights into the cost structure, understanding the factors that influence maintenance expenses, and adopting effective strategies, fleet managers can make informed decisions that have a significant impact on their bottom line.

Truck leasing offers businesses the opportunity to enjoy the benefits of owning a truck without the substantial initial investment and depreciation that come with outright purchases. Mac’s Truck Rental, a prominent HGV truck and lorry leasing company in the UK, has been instrumental in providing businesses nationwide with convenient access to the commercial trucks necessary for their operations to thrive.

When leasing a truck, one of the significant advantages is the maintenance and breakdowns are covered. Mac’s Truck Rental ensures prompt repair services, eliminating the need for upfront expenses or prolonged downtime. Restoring your truck to full operational capacity is a shared priority, benefiting both parties involved in the leasing agreement.