How To: Sliding Tandems for Trucks Drivers
Have you ever thought to yourself: “How do you slide tandems?” or “What’s the purpose of sliding tandems?”? Well, these are some questions we at Veriha are happy to answer!
When you first pick up a trailer at a customer, the tandems should be slid and locked entirely to the rear of the trailer. To get the tandems slid into a legal position, follow these ten steps:
- Release the tandem pins (two on each side of the trailer). Use the release mechanism to pull the pins out of their locked position and into the tandem frame.
- Once inside the tractor, ensure that the trailer brake is locked. Release your tractor brake and gently rock the truck back and forth until the pins have popped into place before you attempt to move the tandems. After that, once the pins are released, back up gently until you reach the 41-foot mark. Put the tractor in neutral, and set the brake.
- Get outside to inspect the tandem locations to ensure they are in a safe and legal position to operate on the roadway.
- It is time to engage the pins back into the tandem rails. Use the release to make the pins pop back out into the rails. Ensure that all four pins are fully out and locked into the rails. If not, you may need to move the tractor forward or backward so that the pins align with the holes in the tandem assembly and lock. Use a tire pencil or other device to mark which spot you are aiming to lock the pins in.
- You can now make your way to the scale to distribute the load at a legal weight. Make sure you are using a certified scale!
- Now that you have arrived at the customer, it is time to slide the tandem to the rear of the trailer for safety purposes. There is an increased chance of a mishap when forklifts roll in and out when the tandems are all the way forward.
- To do this, use the release mechanism to retract the pins into the tandem assembly. Then, once inside the tractor (using the same steps as in #2), drive forward until the tandems sit at the trailer’s rear.
- Push or pull the release mechanism back to release the pins into the rails.
- Once in the tractor, put yourself in reverse and slowly back up until you feel the pins lock into place.
- Visually inspect that all four pins are locked into the rail. This step is critical to ensure that the tandem will not slide forward when a forklift drives onto the trailer.
Knowing proper sliding tandem procedures is integral to having safe and successful journeys. Need to know the differences between manual and air-release tandems? Check out our YouTube video “How To: Sliding Tandems for Trucks Drivers”.