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  • Vehicle Maintenance

    One thing I've been wondering is how do your vehicles hold up with all that extra gear? I assume they have at least 1 extra battery to power all of the equipment that is separate than the one used to start the car? Do you need to leave your engine running if you use the computer/lights/radio on the car so the battery doesn't die?

    Also, who's responsible for the upkeep of the vehicle? Checking Oil/Transmission Fluid/etc...? Do you guys do that or does the department have a crew for that?

    Last thing on this subject... Do you guys have your own gas station or do you use a gas card at a public gas station, or both?

    Thanks for responding!

  • #2
    Originally posted by Aspirer View Post
    One thing I've been wondering is how do your vehicles hold up with all that extra gear? I assume they have at least 1 extra battery to power all of the equipment that is separate than the one used to start the car? Do you need to leave your engine running if you use the computer/lights/radio on the car so the battery doesn't die?

    Also, who's responsible for the upkeep of the vehicle? Checking Oil/Transmission Fluid/etc...? Do you guys do that or does the department have a crew for that?

    Last thing on this subject... Do you guys have your own gas station or do you use a gas card at a public gas station, or both?

    Thanks for responding!
    just one battery. larger alternator. there is a device that will cut the power to everything when the battery gets low so we can start the car back up. if the car is going to have the lights on it will be running.

    it is our responsability to check fluids ect. for oil changes, flat tires, scheduled maintainance, and repairs we have a fleet management division that does all the work at our own sevice department.

    we have 4 gas pumps near the garage that we can use and gas cards to use when we out and about. the cards are through wright express so we can use them at most gas stations.

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    • #3
      Alabama DPS. One battery only, heavy duty alternator. Each Trooper is issued a take home car. It is his/her responsibility to insure that the assigned vehicle recieves scheduled/required maintenence. Trooper is responsible for checking oil,transmission, power steering tire pressure etc. Gas cards are issued through Wright's Express and can be used at commercial outlets statewide.

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      • #4
        Ours have only the one heavy duty battery paired with a heavy duty alternator. If you need to run the lights for a long time, say at an accident scene, then we let the engine idle - On a hot day, we may have to pop the hood a bit to help keep things cool.

        It is every officer's responsibility to check fluid levels & tire pressure before taking out the car for their shift. We have a maintenance bay to the rear of the station and also a set of gas pumps with regular (87 octane) gas. the regular maintenance and minor service (non-warantee issues) are done by contract mechanics on site. Major repairs are sent to the main fleet headquarters downtown (large Department, many patrol stations).

        Our motor units (need 91 or better octane gas) and those driving diesel vehicles are issued gas cards to fuel up off-site.
        LIFE IS TOO SHORT TO DRINK CHEAP BEER!

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        • #5
          1 Bat, large alt. Pump at our garage and fill up at end of shift
          "Do not draw me without honor"

          "Do not sheath me without Justice!"

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Aspirer View Post
            One thing I've been wondering is how do your vehicles hold up with all that extra gear?
            Well enough for a couple years. Then they kinna go downhill.

            I assume they have at least 1 extra battery to power all of the equipment that is separate than the one used to start the car?
            Nope, just one battery.

            Do you need to leave your engine running if you use the computer/lights/radio on the car so the battery doesn't die?
            We only leave it running for the lights. The Computer and Radio don't pull that much power. We don't leave the MDC's or radio's on overnight, but it has happened before and you can still start it up.

            Also, who's responsible for the upkeep of the vehicle? Checking Oil/Transmission Fluid/etc...? Do you guys do that or does the department have a crew for that?
            We have a "contract garage". Officers are responsible for going there to get the oil changed/brakes/tires rotated. Any repairs more than that go through the Fleet Manager.

            Last thing on this subject... Do you guys have your own gas station or do you use a gas card at a public gas station, or both?
            Currently we have a contract with a commercial filling station. I have a gas card that I use. The City picks up the tab. Previously we had a gas card that we could use at certain local gas stations.
            "People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf." - George Orwell
            8541tactical.com - Ammo Wallets

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            • #7
              Our department has its own shop. It is actually for all county vehicles. Sheriff, Fire, EMS, Animale Control, ect..

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              • #8
                We have take home rigs. Essentially stripped down "work truck" package GMC's so it's just the standard battery/alternator that they come with. I can go about 4 days of not starting it before I'm out there jumping it with my own truck. I disconnect the battery if I know I'll be gone a few days. If any lights are going then the engine is running, the strobe action on my top light doesn't work right without the engine running. Pulls just a little too much power for the battery alone to make it work.

                We're contracted to go to Jiffy Lube for all general maintenance and we're suppose to just follow the schedule that's in their computer. Other repairs we go to the nearest GMC dealership. Tires are contracted through Les Schwab. We've got Wright Express gas cards so just about all gas stations take them.
                He who laughs last.......thinks slowest

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                • #9
                  My newer cruiser has two batteries (the one in the trunk powers the computer, modem, radio, lights.... etc).

                  The officer is responsible for the general upkeep and for checking the oil. Every 3k miles you better be in line at the maintenance facility to get the oil changed.
                  "The price of freedom is eternal vigilance."

                  Thomas Jefferson

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                  • #10
                    Our cars are leased so maintenance is performed at the Volkswagen dealership.
                    As for special police options members of our state's police technics division visit the VW factory and draw a certain number of vehicles out of production. Then those vehicles are being prepared for our needs by our technicians, supported by VW engineers. Police vehicles get special wiring harnesses and several special set ups which cannot be bought in the civilian market.

                    As for the gas, it depends on the city. For my town, we do have a gas station owned by the state where we are allowed to get fuel cheaper than at a regular station. All units in my town have special code keys to access the gas station and engage the pumps. All other cities in my county do have to go to public gas stations.
                    Last edited by Stephan9C1; 12-04-2007, 03:53 PM.

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                    • #11
                      Our motors go to the local dealership for service as needed. The older bikes with strobes tends to kill the batteries quickly when the bike is not running but the new bikes with the LED lights can stay on for hours without the bike running. We can gas up at either the city pumps, the county pumps or we each have city credit cards for a particular gas station if we need it.

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                      • #12
                        We have a county garage that takes care of changing fluids and maintenance, but the officer is responsible for checking fluids on a routine basis.

                        Like the others have said, just one battery but a heavy duty alternator.

                        We have several municipal gas stations and we also have fleet cards that can be used at two different brands of commercial gas stations.
                        I miss you, Dave.
                        http://www.odmp.org/officer/20669-of...david-s.-moore

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