18WT #079 - Top 10 Life Hacks Every Truck Driver Must Know!

August 29, 2023  Patrick Heller / Janet McCue

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Episode #079

What? Do you know what day it is? Well, yeah. You do. What day? It's Taco Tuesday. No, what? It's free Taco Tuesday. Oh, it's free Taco Tuesday. That's right. Mm-hmm. Yeah. Taco Bell. Taco Bell is giving away free Doritos loco taco one per customer while the place last. No, no purchase necessary between I talking like this between here between now and Labor Day.

Mm-hmm. So I think that's, thank you. September 4th I believe, so I don't have a calendar in front of me is the Tuesday, September after Labor Day after that I believe saw so. I think so. But anyways, any who, so thank you Taco Bell and thank you. Taco John? Yes. Get your free Doritos loco taco. 'cause today is Tuesday Taco Tuesday.

Don't forget your tequila shots to go with your taco. Taco and tequilas. Your mom liked that. I know, right? Wasn't that her idea? Taco and tequila? That was, yeah. Tequila and tacos. Thank you mama. Yay. Welcome to the 18 Wheel Talk podcast show, thank you. Welcome, welcome. And, uh, if this is your first time listening to us, we're turning, we, we've turned four years old.

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Oh, and ring the bell too. You can ring a bell. You can ring a bell. Dinging. Ding. She's a dingdong. I knew you were gonna do that this time. Gotcha. Yeah, I noted. I got you. It's okay. I got you. I got you. Anyways, it's good. Welcome to the show. Thank you very much. Welcome. Where the what? What did you say? We're often imitated, never duplicated.

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We are talking about 10 things, life hacks. Truckers need to know. Can you gotta be in the know, excuse me. 10 life hacks truck drivers need to know. Yep. Alright. Yep, yep. Alright, let's let it roll short and sweet. Maybe. Maybe I'll have some story times to go with it. There's always story times I used always.

You forgot the bell. You were in the kitchen too. I forgot the damn bell. See now it's on you lot. Every week one of us forgets it. I don't know what to say. Listen, I'm IT. I just make sure everything goes good. So whether you're experienced, whether you're new, whether you're just here for the ride, holding down that jump seat.

Anyways, these are, you're gonna like this, these life hacks pertain to everybody. Trucker life trucker life trucker lifestyle. All right, number one, go for it. When you're parking your truck at night, you know, like in that truck stop. Yep. Truck stop, wherever, wherever you parking, wherever you parking. Make it a well lit spot.

Um, secure, as if possible. I'm personally getting real fond of those, um, ones with the gates, you know that Yeah. That's cost secured. Well, you, you might have to pay for it, but you might have to pay. But if you eat or fuel up, you don't have to pay. But by doing so, it protects you. And, and they've usually got guards and the value, the valuables that are in the back of the trailer.

Yeah. Um, the other now, now you used to haul van trailers. Yeah. Reefers. Reefers. Yeah. You know, I, I did flatbeds, so. You had a, well, usually on flatbeds, the stuff is so big nobody could steal it. I mean, if you want it, go for it. I'd like to see you take it off the truck. But like in a reefer, they, the only place that I really didn't go to Okay.

Was down in the port of Jersey. Okay. There's, sorry, New Jersey. There's that one. Oh wait. They're the only ones that, that can't get the free taco. Was New Jersey? No, that's because they have a Port of jersey there. I forgot to mention that. Um, 49 states. Except, except New Jersey. New Jersey. Anyways, sorry, Jersey.

They have no free tacos for you. That one spot that I can't think of the name of that is known for having, um, ho Hoboken. No, there's a certain trucking parking area that's known for having, um, professionals work there. Oh, okay. Um, not just professional like hookers and buffaloes and et cetera, but et cetera, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.

But like, if you park there overnight and you don't have someone watching your load, you're not gonna have a trailer, much less a load. Whoa. Oh, oh. Would a those places, like those places, one of those places where it's a hot spot? Yeah, it's a hot spot to the point that I have delivered there in the daytime.

And when I felt someone getting on my trailer. I shifted. I made sure that he got off. I tapped the brakes. Whoop Bamm first you shift face plant. First you get it going real good. Then you slam the brakes. Yeah. Face plant. And if I happen to jack it just a little, well then he just went, yeah, right off the side.

It's okay. Do a little spin. So the reason I mention that is because if you're in an area that's not the greatest especially mm-hmm. And you're with someone and it's a big enough parking lot. And you're both in, say reefers or van trailers? Yes. Back to back. Oh, door to door. Door to door. Nice. Yeah. My dad taught me that.

But, but to butt, he used to tease me. He'd say, I've known, I knew a few drivers that would park. Always do that. Yep. To butt. Well, they got the rubber bumpers back there so you guys can touch Yeah. Bumpers broughly. And you'll know that you've bumped them. And you know, you go up and say, Hey, I'm gonna back into you.

So that we're noticing. Yeah. Butt the butt. When you feel me, it's okay. But yeah, it's, I'm just letting you know I'm back here. My dad used to tease me though. He'd say closer, I'd be out the, you know, hanging out the window and he'd be closer, closer, closer. It's okay. You still got six inches. Come on, come on.

Little closer. Bring it in. Bring it in. I was always scared of touching this trailer because, you know, back it up, back it up. His was really nice looking. Oh, but the reason he was, you could even back next to a flatbed. Flatbed. They're not gonna steal the stuff off of, but, but it kept them from opening my doors.

Exactly. Yeah. They'll keep keep it from, yeah. Kept them from opening my doors and Yeah. If you mess with my dad's trailer, whoof hoof, the baby. Yeah. So, so yeah, it's, you just take care of your neighbor, you take care of your friends, you know, if you got a group together, Back 'em up together. Back it up.

That's a good, that's a definite good life hack right there. Yeah. Uh, so, so life hack number one is parking. When you park it overnight, choose a well lit secure area, but the butt, if you can, secured, if you can Yeah. And, and, and keep it at that. Yeah. You know. Okay. All right. Life hack number two is always keep an emergency kit on your truck.

What should you have in it? What would you keep in it? First aid kit, flashlight, spare fuses, uh, essential tools, basically. Okay. Yeah. We, um, we did a podcast that had, um, like the basics like for repairs and wiring and stuff for lights. Yep. So, and that's what I would keep, yeah. Like, I think it was episode 68.

I think, I think, I think you're right. Um, I believe so. I, the, the, the title escapes me. I think it's old school lighting or something like that. I believe so, but that's what I would keep, you know? Yeah. That type of stuff comes in handy. No, definitely a first aid kit because if you're fixing something and you slip well and alright, and you cut yourself, you know, and you need band aids, Lord knows I've never cut myself much, never.

Ever much. Nope. Ever. Uh, flashlight to see what the hell you're doing. I had, I had one of those square magnet mount ones Yeah. That had like little l e d lights on. See, I never had the magnet mounts until I, that was pretty cool. I met you and then I was like, oh, those are really cool. Cool. Gotta cool Right.

Are getting one of them. Um, I always had a thank you Harbor Freight. I always had a you because they always give 'em free. Yeah. I always had a, a rubber mallet and I always had a, a claw hammer. Yep. And people say, well, that's a carpenter's hammer. Well, that's the one I like. They're handy. Yeah. Because believe me, it's, it'll come in handy.

Yep. But anyways, that's what I would, you know, just like a small toolkit. Yeah. It doesn't take much, you know, um, I don't know if they still do, but I know the brake chambers to, to adjust your brakes. So it took a 9/16. Yeah. You know, 9/16 box wrench. Yeah. They're, everybody had one. If you didn't, if you didn't, you were begging the driver next door for one.

Yep. Hey man you got a 9/16. gotta 9/16. I got a problem. You got a brake wrench? Yeah, I gave it back to you. I promise. Yep. So, so any who? That's number two. Number two. All right. So number two is always keep an emergency kit in your truck. Good idea. Yep. For women, a hairbrush, and you could keep whatever you want in your emergency kit.

I, I would do first aid kit, my essential, like my small little toolkit, couple of hammers, like, like Jenna said, rubber mallet. You never, never know. Flashlight. Yep. Spare fuses, my stuff like that. What would you call the, well, it was my tire thumper, you know my, yeah. A wheel thumper. My wheel thumper. Oh, you mean your steel bar?

Yeah. I don't know what anyone else would call it. That's a tire thumper. That was my tire thumper. That was my personal security. That was your, that was your ratchet strap. Tighten downer. That was by everything that was um, yeah. Pure gold that's out in our garage. Yeah, I spent a lot of time with that Uhhuh.

Anyway, life hack on the number three. We're on number three. Life hack number three. These are the top 10 life hacks every truck driver should know. Stay organized. Um, I agree. I kept 90% of my stuff, you know, I had some cupboards. Not a lot. No truck has huge amount unless you've customized it. Yeah, this is true.

So most of my stuff was underneath my bunk. Mm-hmm. I didn't like putting a lot of stuff on my top bunk 'cause I didn't like using the netting and messing with that. Or having it flying because of, you know, my dog. Mm-hmm. So, I organized underneath my bunk and I put everything in bins and I labeled the bins.

Mm-hmm. I didn't label the outsides of my compartments, even though people say you should, why would I wanna advertise? See now the bins that I had under my bunk, they were the black ones with the yellow lid. Yeah. You know, I think Home Depots sells them. Yeah. It's like I said, organizer bins. Yeah. You know, but I had to, I had like three or four of the black ones with the yellow top on.

Yeah. And then I had some smaller ones too. I didn't label mine. I just, I kind of knew what was in mine. I'm an organization freak. I'm just freak. I know this is a surprise to you. What? I'm an organization freak and everything has a place for it. There's a place for everything and everything in its place.

No way. Yes. No. There's a tadd bit of OCD in me. Just a little. No way. Fuck sake. I knew you'd say that eventually, for fuck sake, Patrick. Fuck sake. Janet, you've been teaching me that. Anyway. Look at you teaching me to cuss. How dare you? What? I never knew how before you, so you would label the top as to what was in your mm-hmm.

Or your bin? In my bin. Were they clear? See-through What? No. What color were yours? Pink, purple, red. Red. What color was my rig? Red. So what color was my bins? Blue, Red. Good guess. My, my truck was red, my bins were red. My tool tank was red, the dog was blue, her collar was red, my fingernails were red. Kinda like my glasses.

The guy next to you had a red bloody nose? Yeah, pretty much. Anyways, yeah, he did for a while and then he got outta the truck. Right. And got his own job. Well, that's stupid. Any who? Any who? Yes. Any who's? Any who? Onto number four? Yes. Number four. Number four. Uh, to prevent your curtains from tangling, you know, the window curtains.

Mm-hmm. Um, use a, you could use a hanger. I haven't figured out how people use a hanger. You know, put the bottom of the curtain in there and then, Hook it. Ah, yeah. Uh, well see. Some of the curtains are rubber and some are vinyl. And most of, most, most of the curtains I had were like the vinyl, like plasticy material.

And you could fit a metal, like a metal hanger. Plastic one. Yeah. What mean? No, I, I knew what you meant. I just like, couldn't picture it because, and then you could hook it almost to where the seatbelt goes through. Yeah. Or somewhere over there. Keep My rig didn't have curtains. Okay. And the boss asked me, do you want, you know, those things?

And I'm like, I was looking at 'em. I really don't like 'em. Well, they're blackout curtains. I don't know why you wouldn't have gotten them. You could've got 'em in, in, in a shade of red. I'm sure. I just didn't want 'em. I don't know why. I just didn't want what they had in stock. Okay. So I would. Ended up coming out here to Arizona.

Okay. And my mom and sister and I went shopping and I bought two single size, like for a singles size bed. Okay. Um, they're basically a twin. Twin. They're twin size. Yep. They're called Mexican blankets. It's not anything offensive. That's what they're called because they're from Mexico. 'cause that's where we went shopping.

They made Mexican was in Mexico. What under the. We the woven, you know Yeah. With the fringe on the end. Oh yeah. And two of those, the, the wool blankets. Yeah. Yeah. Two of those. Well, I think that's what they call, yeah. Two of those end to end mm-hmm. Are the exact right size. Oh, I gotcha. From, to go from door to door.

Door all the way around to door. Yeah. Oh, nice. I put curtain hooks in them. They fit the little loopty loops perfectly. Mm-hmm. And then I used the tiny little bungee cords when I pulled 'em open. They fit. Oh, I gotcha. Perfectly on the back of the seats. And then when I closed them, they were dark enough for me.

Right. Because I'm a day driver anyway, for the most part. Right. I'd start, you know, three o'clock in the morning. Well, bungee cords was the other thing. Yeah. I used tiny bungee cords and uh, and they were light enough that I'd. They weren't like, I wasn't worried about them hurting, you know, Taz, he was so light to begin with.

Right. And they were easy to clip together at night. Yeah. They overlapped. And I used, I used binder clips. I used one binder clip at the bottom and it was enough Yeah. You know, to put 'em together. So it worked really easy. There's so many options. But yeah, I never thought about using a hanger. Yeah. Yeah.

Wire. It has to be a wire hanger though. Well, yeah. It'd have to be, because you gotta be able, you gotta be able to bend it to be able to fit that, because they, those vinyl curtains are bulky. Yeah. That's why I didn't really want 'em. They, so, so life hack number four is to prevent your curtains from, from getting tangled or crappy use, you could use a wire hanger.

Uh, bungee cords. Uh, binder your clips. Yeah. Anything to kind of tie 'em back, which, which kind of, you know, uh, makes living in your truck a little more comfortable. Yeah. Other than, because otherwise they swish back and forth, especially those heavy ones. And if you stop really hard and you gotta, and, and the gliders are nice, they will, if you don't have 'em tied back, they, they will slide up.

Mine never slid. I had 'em tied back. Uh, I forget. I saw somebody that had slammed on their brakes. I think that was the passenger side that that come about three quarters of the way around. Oh, it was funny. What's the funniest story time? What's ding? Ding? What's the funniest thing you ever saw? Go flying when someone slammed on their brakes.

I don't know. Okay. Now, first of all, what's the funniest thing you've seen? Uh, there's a disclaimer here. A disclaimer. I am a total animal lover. I have yet to meet an animal I didn't love. Mm-hmm. I mean, I like spiders and snakes and everything. Okay. Everybody that knows me knows that. Right. Unless they invade your territory, then whack, that's usually a person.

No, I meant the bug. Well, that's different. If it's a bug that doesn't belong, that's different. Anyway, a driver that drove for the same company that I did. Okay. Over the road. Yep. He drove more regional. 'cause God forbid he goes, you know, too far west. Oh my god. Um, anywho make my eye twitch, he had. Um, I think it was a cockatoo in his truck with him.

Oh, he had a bird, a big bird. Oh. And he forgot to secure the cage one time when he put the bird back in and he was coming into the truck stop. Just from the. Terminal to the truck stop to fuel. It's like one mile. But when he did, he shoved on the brakes 'cause it was a little slicker than he expected. And the bird cage would fly and it whoop hit whoop.

It hit the dash and the bird hit the cage. I felt so bad for the poor bird. Oh my God. But the reason, it was funny, I felt bad for the bird. The reason it was funny is there's. Bird seed and he hadn't cleaned the cage. Oh. Feathers and everything. Bird seed, bird crap, and feathers everywhere. Oh, good for him.

And I'm like, bad for the bird, the poor bird. But you should never have had a bird in a truck to begin with, in my opinion. But yeah, it's like, wow, that was a mess. I was like, clad. I didn't have to plan that up. I don't think I've ever, I, I don't think I've ever had a lot lingering around in my truck that could, I always.

Had a, you know, there was always a place for my stuff, so, yeah. You know, when you, if you don't secure it, it's broke pretty much. Yeah. So anyways, so okay. On, on the life hack number five, I. Okay, so nu numeral five. Number five. Number five. So back in the day we used maps. Yeah. You know, plan your Rand McNally Wrap Rand McNally maps.

Yes. You plan your route, you, and once you've driven enough, you just know your routes. I used to have the laminated Yeah. Book. And I used to have a wax pen. Mm-hmm. Pencil they, yeah. They call a wax pencil. Yes. This way you could. Mine was, I use it, you know, they, they had the highway colors were black. Mm-hmm.

Or red, depending on what type of highway it was. So I had, I had a blue, um, wax marker. It goes, the hair again. I had, I had a blue wax pen. Yes. That's what I'm trying to get at. So it was different than the highway colors. So that way when I drew on the map, I knew that that was the direction I was going and I could erase it if I needed to.

Okay. You know, little spit and on a little and off it came and a tissue. Oh good. I thought you were gonna say, you just wiped it with your hand. I'm like, oh yeah. Oh yeah. Nice finger. Nice fingers. No. So a little spit and polish. Anyways, go ahead. So anyway, sorry, I didn't mean to interrupt. No, you're fine.

It's my first time podcasting, you're fine, you're fine. But if you plan your routes ahead, it saves you time, money, and stress. Oh, hell yeah. I, I, I love maps. I map reading. What got me into the army. I mean, what? Yeah. No lie. No way. Yes. Way. No way. Anyway, anyways, so now everybody uses G P S for everything. You can buy some really cheap ones.

If you wanna spend 50 bucks on a G P S for a truck, yeah, you can. I do not, do not recommend that. Do not recommend because it does not tell you low bridges. It does not tell you that, you know, road restrictions. It does not, does not tell you that you're gonna end up in a river. Yeah. So there's a couple brands, there's, I'm sure there's two dozen brands.

Yeah. Oh, there's, but the ones that I'm most, some of the most famous ones are. Yeah. Well, Tom. Tom, I've heard of Tom. Tom. Garmin. Garmin, yeah. And Rand McNally. Rand McNally's probably the best. Yeah, I'll see. Those are the ones I'm, I'm obviously, this is not my month for hair. Um, go ahead. Go ahead, grab it. Yeah, I, no, I'm not doing that again.

That's once and done. Go ahead, grab it. Um, anyway, backstage annex. Those are the three I'm most familiar with. Okay. What do you know? Uh, Rand McNally's the one that I would choose and I wouldn't buy one for less than like 350. Alright, so what, 'cause once you hit a certain, once you hit a couple hundred, you know, two, $300, then you're getting into something that's worth having.

Yeah. 'cause you're gonna have it all the time. You can Correct. You can spend less than that if it's a regional board you're running. Right. But I was I your region I was coast to co. I was coast to coast and Canada. True. I had to have a really good knowledge of roads. Right. Mine was a Rand McNally map. You would, the Rand McNally would tell you where the.

Everything I had, it would tell you. The states tell you how, how tall the bridges were. Yes. You know, bridges, toll roads. Mine had, uh, truck stops. Pugs mine. Yours had pugs. Mine had Pug stops. Pug stops. Yeah. Uh, pug in the room. Two pugs now. Anyway, truck stops. Um, toll roads. Um, Right when I was going into Canada, some of those back roads.

Yep. Um, it told me this is a, you're going into Canada on this bridge, you know, even though some roads, you'd think, well, this has gotta be into Canada. No, you're still in Wisconsin here. Yeah. Or you're in the U P N Michigan. It might look like Canada, but you're still in Michigan. Yeah. You know, type of thing.

Did you say European? No, upper Peninsula of Michigan. Oh, I was gonna say you European of Michigan. Well, you have to pee sometime. It's a really big state. You pee. You said you pee Michigan. I know. It's okay. You pee my, I know it was so, yeah. Rand McNally, in my opinion, would be the best of the choices, but I haven't driven a lot with the professional.

Now, do you know, um, do you know price points between the, um, Tom, Tom was the cheapest? Garmin was kind of the middle, but I've never heard anything good about the Garmin ones for some reason. I've heard a lot of mixed reviews. Yeah. I'll, I'll go there. I'll say I've heard mixed reviews on the Garmins. Um, they've come a long way.

Yeah. Garmin, when they first got 'em sucked when they first came out. The ones for cars did too. But the, you know, g p s has come a long Oh yeah. A long, long way. Um, uh, but I think out of, in my opinion, Rand McNally is probably one of the best. Yeah. If not the best on the market. I know that if you wanted to get back into trucking, and I'm not condoning this at all, Patrick, what we're, no.

But if you were at a point where we had to, okay, that's the one we'd buy. We'd go spend the money on a good Rand McNally one. I would not need it because I would have a navigator in a jump seat. Oh, okay. That, that would find a way fast. Well, I still know almost all the roads. I know all the, well, I could take you anywhere in the US without a map, but I might have to look at something for a inside of town.

Yeah, but you gotta be quick. You can't be like, like, oh baby, you're gonna turn right there. As we drive by it because that wouldn't work. Oh, you mean in the middle of a construction zone? Yeah something like that. Mr. zippity doo dah at night. I don't know what you're talking about. I went the way I was supposed to go.

You did not. What number were we on? Yeah, I'm gonna give you a number anyhow. Ding story time's over. Ah, his story time's. That'll be a story for another day. So anyways, if you'd like to know that story, you can email me, Janet, what is my email? Uh, janet@18wheeltalk.com or is it Janet m? It's Janet.

janet@18wheeltalk.com. You emailed me and I'll tell you that story anyways. Anyway, back to the list. Life hack number six. Alright, so number five was plan your route. Yes. Number six is stay healthy on the Road. Yes. All right. Pack, pack healthy snacks and meals. Okay. Avoid the fast food, the sugary drinks as much as possible.

Okay. Because your body will Thank you, for instance, what do you mean? For instance, gimme for instance, like soda. Oh, drink soda? Yeah. Don't drink soda. Oh, don't drink soda. Don't drink soda. I was real proud of you when you gave up Mountain Dew. Don't, don't eat, you know, truck stop food every night. Okay. I, I don't say.

Don't eat it ever. Ever. Yeah. But don't eat it every night. Yeah. Don't drink soda every day. Yeah. Drink water. Wa wa water. You drink a lot of water in our house. We both do. Yeah. So I like that, that Go for it. Crystal light. Oh yeah, yeah. Always like, what do I drink again? I remembered it. It's a powdery thing.

It's a powder thing. I add to water. I add it to water. It's little packets and it's not sunny delight. Right. It's the other light, it's crystal light. They both end in light. I mean, come on. I also like nuts. I, I live with you, bop, bop, bop. Ha ha ha ha. I knew that was coming. You knew that was coming. Anyway, I've always liked having They're right back at you baby, because they're high protein and good fat, so That's true.

Yeah. Um, and they're crunchy. So that gets me past my wanting potato chips. That's always nothing wrong. Nothing wrong with a good kettle chip or something. I know, but just saying. One bag leads to another. That's why you buy the individual bags. Yeah. That worked for me. Yeah. Um, if I bought a big bag, I would sit and munch on the big bag if I bought the individual bags or pre portioned the big bag into Ziploc bags, you know?

Yep. I I was fine doing that too. I agree. But I had to pre portion if I just took the big bag and threw it in the truck. It was history. Yeah. Oh no. Trust me. bop, bop done. Yeah. I agree with you on that. But anyways, yeah. So the healthier snacks. Yeah. Like I said, there are ways every, every, most truck drivers have a cooler of some sort or a quote, refrigerator cooler in their truck.

Yep. Um, so there's no reason why when you're at home you say, Hey, I'm gonna, you can Instacart it, DoorDash it, whatever, you know, get Yeah. Get your groceries, get stopped. You can do 'em on the road too. Yeah. You can plan ahead. Mm-hmm. You can go to 18 wheel talk.com/instacart. Yep. And, uh, let 'em, you know, get a physical address of where you're at.

They'll deliver to you. They will deliver to truck stops, and they will, if you're gonna be at your stop long enough, they'll deliver it to you. They'll deliver it to your stop. You might have to meet 'em at the guard gate. Usually takes, you know, Uh, they have like a three hour window. A four hour window.

Yeah. Yeah. Somewhere right here. As little as, yeah, as little as Depends on which, if you have the Yeah. Instacart Express. Yeah. Express. Express. But anyways, New tongue just called it. Go to 18 wheel talk.com/instacart tells Instacart we sent you. And hopefully, hopefully you'll get your groceries in, in as little as one hour.

Oh, I forgot to go that fast. Yeah. What can I say? But you can get 'em. You, uh, when you, when you sign in, depending on where you're at, it tells you what stores in the area are available for Instacart when you sign, when you, when you get, when you go to 18 wheel talk.com/instacart. Yeah. We were pleasantly surprised when we went through, um,

I almost said Telluride, Colorado, um, uh, Estes Park? No, when we stopped for the night, oh, Durango. Yeah. Durango. Telluride, same thing. Same. Yeah. Not, uh, no, that's true. Well, I've been to both. So top of the mountain, bottom of the mountain. Bottom mountain. Okay. Bottom of the mountain. We are in Durango. Yes. We were pleasantly surprised by how much, how many stores were available.

Yes. So anyway, anyway, life hack number seven is all about Patrick. Yes, because I had bad luck. The only time I tried doing something like this, I said, alright, life hack number seven is, is secure a set of keys? Outside. Yeah. Somewhere outside your truck. In case. Just in case you had you, let's put it this way, you know you have a brain, brain fart and you fucking lock the, lock the damn keys in the truck.

Once in my entire life, in my car once, most people can't say that. Wanna tell 'em the story or, or? Oh, please. I wanna hear your point of view. No, no. My point of view, yeah. I wanna hear your point of view. Once in my entire life, I've lost or locked a set of keys. In a vehicle? Once. Once. Once. In your 29 years?

Yes. And in that one time I knew one person who at the time was skinny enough to fit through my little windows in my house. Mm-hmm. So I called him, what's his name? Patrick. Hey, I know Patrick. Yeah. Him. I know Patrick. Yeah. You. And he's carrying you. And I said, whatcha doing? And he says, nothing. Got my son with me.

I said, well, could you do me a favor? And he says, okay. I said, well, I, no, I didn't have my son with me. I said, you had to go get him. I'm getting ready to go get him. I knew it was something like that Anyways, and so you, oh, by the way, ding. Story time. So, so you went to pick your son up and I had no, I, I went to your place first and got your keys and then picked up.

I thought you picked him up first. No. See, I, you shouldn't have told. I did the criminal act first, and then I went and picked him up

because if that was the case, I'd have dropped him through the window. I told him to go and lock the door

anyway. Anyway, I told him how to break into my house. Like I said, I did the criminal act first. And then picked him up on the way through town, which was to go through a certain window in, in my spare bedroom, drop down onto the futon, go to the, and get attacked by the Rottweiler, get attacked by my Rottweiler that I forgot to mention till the last second.

Oh, by the way, I have a dog. Oh yeah. be careful with the dog. My keys should have been hanging in the front closet. And they weren't on the key rack. They weren't. They weren't. They were. They should have been. They were on the table. Oh, right in front of the closet. In a big basket full. But at least she told me what kind of key chain it was.

Yeah. Okay. So anyway. So he got attacked by my Rottweiler, her little toy schnauzer with a Rottweiler bark. Six pound dog came up, just licked me on, ah guy. That's 'cause he is got a split hooked in the window. I was upside down. Mm-hmm. Anyways, all his fault, my mind scoop her up, walked around and said, where's mommy's keys?

Where's mommy's keys? She had no idea what I was saying to her. She was just happy I picked her up. Yeah, she's just happy you picked her up. That's all. But anyways, so if, heaven forbid, you lock your keys inside if you, if you hide a key somewhere, I'm not a fan of the magnetic boxes, even though they are tough sons of bitches on, on a big rig.

Um, but however, I, I managed to hide a key under the hood in the engine compartment that was there for like almost two and a half years before. Anybody needed it. And then you had to remind the person you drove and had to remind the guy that that put it there with me where we put it because he forgot about, he didn't like, he didn't like the magnetic boxes either.

So, but we, we, I had one in the engine compartment just in case. Just in case I remember the discussion. Him and I had about magnetic boxes. Yeah, because I had put one on a rental car. He had one, he had one that, and then he, it, he, he had one and it was there for so long it rusted shut and you couldn't get in it to get the key out, and mine fell off.

So anyway, that was, that was his reasoning for not liking the, so, so, number seven is hide a key. Hide. Hide a key in a secure area. Only. Where of your own choice? Of your own choice? Magnetic box or not? Just as a, just in case. Mm-hmm. Because you know, sometimes we out in left field, you got a lot on your mind.

You get out, you lock that door and as soon as it closes you go, oh shit, the truck's running. Mm-hmm. And I just fueled up. Oh no, I dunno. So anyways, not me as a just in case. Just in case that's true, people do. My sister used to lock her keys in her car all the time, just in case. Life hack. I mean like numero eight.

Numero eight. So this should be like a no brainer. It should be regularly inspect, like pre-trip, post-trip, your truck tires, brakes, fluid levels, you know, keeps you from having breakdowns and make sure you're safe on the road. Yep. 'cause if you've ever like had a blowout or something that you weren't, I'd knock on wood.

I never had a blowout on my tractor. I've had trailer tires blow out, so you know. Yeah. No big deal. Whoa, whoa. It's a trailer tire. Go down the road and get one fixed When I drove, but I never had a tractor tire blow out, steer tire or anything like that. Now I lost a steer tire in Saratoga when I was driving local.

Um, did you say you're local? Ha You said, you said local moi local for many, many years. You ain't lying and yet you live with me. So takes a loco, to know a loco. Oh, so you're admitting it. So I've never denied it when I drove local tractor trailer. Local deliveries home every night? Yep. Five to six days a week.

Okay. In, rub it in anyways. In Albany area. Mm-hmm. That's in New York. Yeah, I, yeah. That's upstate New York, not big city people. I, it's the capital of New York, Albany. So, sorry, go ahead. I delivered, it's that star on the map. If you open up Patrick. Sorry, go ahead. I delivered a regional board, even though it was considered a local job because I could get home every night.

Yep. Okay. Mm-hmm. I delivered two lumber yards. Okay. And I ended up with a steer tire blowing out in the lumber yard. Wow. Because they ran over something, the truck in front of me, they didn't say. You know, I'd always radio in ahead. Hey, I am three miles out coming in. Is the yard open? Can I get through, you know, et cetera.

Or do I need to wait, you know, outside a mile or two down the road till the yard opens up? 'cause it was a small yard. Oh, it's clear, you're good to go. Come on in, come on in, Blondie. So I did, they forgot to mention the yard was clear of semis, but the truck in front of me lost a pallet of nails. Whoops.

Oops. Found out as soon as I got like halfway in the Yep. I'm like, you son's a bitches. And I looked, and that's about the time the sun started to shine. 'cause it was early morning. I'm like, oh, look at that. Who lost all the nails? They said, oh yeah. I'm like, yeah, yeah. I guess I'm gonna be here for a while.

Whoopsie. I, I will just call my boss and let him call a truck to come fix it. Oh. While you guys clean up the yard. I said, 'cause I'm stuck halfway in your gate and I can't move. Yeah. I got no air in these tires and I ain't moving it. So anyway, end of story helps prevent breakdowns unless of course you run into bad luck.

Yeah. Yeah. That's a bad luck right there. Some things you just can't help life hack. Life hack number nine is really important. If you spend any time in your truck. Yeah. If, if you spend a lot of time in your truck. All right. Uh, you wanna invest in a good quality mattress. Comf comfortable bedding because this way you can get a better night's sleep.

Yes. If you've seen the mattresses that come in a truck, normally they're about. Three inches should be about you should be about this thick. Yeah. I'd say three inches thick. I think they were thicker than that. It doesn't seem like it, I swear to God it doesn't, but I think they're thicker than that. Like the old school foldaway beds.

Yeah. It's, that's the only thing I can, that's the best way I could describe what the mattress looked like. Was those, those height of beds that, that, that. That's how thick the mattress was. 'cause you could fold it. My parents had a hide a bed that was more comfortable, but you know what I mean? Yeah, I do.

Um, but anyway, they're very uncomfortable and so if you can afford it, get the upgrade. And if you are a leased to a company or you work for 'em for a while, say, Hey, can you like upgrade my mattress? I'd really appreciate it. 'cause I'd really like to stay with the company and not have a ruined back like some people we know.

Um, bedding that's all. That's all on you. Buy what you like. Yeah. You know, I know people that sleep Yeah. Get what's comfortable for you. Yeah. I know people that sleep in sleeping bags and they never get bedding. Yep. I know other people that invest in, say, heated, heated, uh, sleeping, um, or heated mattress pads.

Okay. And nice sheets and pillows. Yep. And and heated blankets. Yeah. Because they'd drive in the north a lot in the winter. Yep. Like my dad and I both did that. That was my dad's suggestion. You know, he told me this is where you can buy it and invest in it because you're cold. Yeah. All the time. Oh yeah. It was a, well, 90%, well percent of the time, some of the states, you can't idle your truck.

Yeah. You know, and you save a lot of money, you know, by not I, you know, I, yeah. I was saving the company money, but when my boss realized I was saving him money, he's like, Hey, I appreciate that. And he kinda gave me that little bonus when he realized how much money I was saving him. Yeah. That's really nice.

That's really nice, thanks. So anyways, invest. Invest in your rest. Invest. Yeah. Oh, I like that. That's good. Yeah. Invest in your rest. Invest in your rest. Get a good quality mattress and whatever comfortable bedding you desire. This is true. That's the way I look at it. Mm-hmm. Life hack number 10. 10. Number 10.

10. 10. We should have a big 10 that zooms out. Ooh, that's a good idea. Now I don't know if I can do that, but I'll try. Oh, you can do anything You put your mind to baby. I'm sure I can. Anyways. Life hack number 10. Go for it baby. Um, you get reflective tape. Most companies are just gonna give it to you because it's an investment in them.

Comes on a roll. If you're. If you're a company driver mm-hmm. If you're leased again, they're probably just gonna give you the tape for their trailers. Mm-hmm. Um, reflective tape, get the roll, use it because it falls off, it rubs off, it comes off in the weather, it comes off in the wash. Um, so what's that look for?

Okay. You just gave me a look, so I'm just look, make sure you replace, that's the look. Make sure you replace the reflective tape on your trailer. Yeah. When it falls on and on. The proper spots on your truck. Now don't go ruining your chrome bumpers. Yeah, no. To put reflective tape on, but put it in the proper spots so you, the back of the trailer has to have so much of it.

Yes. You know, but, and it does, and it does fall off because you're banging into the docks, truck washes. I, because I had a reefer, I always had it on the front corners also. Mm-hmm. Because, yeah, reefer kind of has a funny shape, you know, and so I put it up there because, you know, there was some real dumb asses out there when I dropped my trailer to, to be unloaded or loaded.

That would back into a reefer because, oh, I didn't see it was a reefer. How do you not notice that? Either way, it's like, how do you not see the trailer? Oh, yeah. Here, sign. Anyway, so I put, I had a really nice reefer trailer, so I put extra, you know, tape on it because I didn't want people backing into it. I knew how to fix the thing, but not how to, like, Fix the trailer part.

I know. Anyway, anyways, um, all right, so let's reiterate these. Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait, wait. Oh, I had a bonus price. Oh, you got a bonus price. Oh. All right. Bonus, bonus, bonus tip. So, from, from Ms. Janet. So this not only goes really for trucks, but it really goes for any motorized vehicle. Okay. Um, by motor, I mean fueled vehicle.

Okay. And it's a way to save, maximize your fuel efficiency. Okay. Okay. Out with it. I'm in suspense now. I wanna know what's the bonus? Well, two parts. Okay. Use, use your cruise control. Oh, okay. You're always gonna have better fuel efficiency using your cruise control. True. Especially on the highway. Yep. I know.

I know. When I was over the road, the trucks that I got is the better fuel mileage that I got. The faster I the truck would go. Mm-hmm. But it would top out at, I think 72 miles an hour. But it had to, I had to use the cruise control. So if I say, did the 55 miles an hour through Ohio mm-hmm. That, that we had to do 'cause of the double standard.

Mm-hmm. Mm-hmm. And, and I, and I was a really good boy by the time I got to from one end to the other. Boy, I tell you, when I kicked that cruise control on when I hit the next date, I was doing 72 mile an hour. Woo hoo. I was flying, baby. You had one of the, you, I almost said a terminator. A governor. A governor on your truck.

I had a governor. A terminator? Yep. I had a governor. Do you know, I know how to, how to bypass the governor, but it was, it was el electronic. Oh. I, uh, immensely. I got a, I got a truck where, where, where I did that. But the electronic ones, yeah. They're easy to bypass. Yeah. Anyways. Use, use, use your cruise control.

I, I never did that. No. Me? No, not me either. Anyway, use your cruise control. Yeah. And also, um, if you own your own vehicle, your own truck, or if you're responsible for paying for your own fuel. Mm-hmm. Um, like especially if you prepay and it takes your company a while to pay you back. Okay. By locking fuel caps.

Yeah. With the way fuel costs now. Yeah. The way, the way fuel costs are, you could be sleeping and people siphon it out. I, I had my two fuel tanks. I had twin one fifties on my rig. 'cause cross country. Yep. And I had a hundred gallon, uh, reefer fuel, so think about how much fuel they could have got from me.

So I went out and bought three locking fuel caps. Yep. The reefer caps, reefer caps, different size than the regular fuel caps. Yeah. And they had to do a special, like, because it doesn't normally get a locking fuel cap, they, I had to get permission and had to take it into the shop and get it put on special because it's not something they'd normally do.

Yeah, that's not, I told 'em, I said, I don't want a hundred gallons of fuel stolen. Just I said, gone. I'll pay for it. Just put it on. Yep. And so they called the owner and he, they, he approved it. And then he is like, then he came the whole mile over. He's like, well, what are you doing here? And I showed him, he's like, oh, okay.

And then he's like, what's all this cost? And. They showed him the bill and he's like, you're willing to pay that for my rig and my trailer? And I said, yeah, because I prepay everything. And then this is when I first started, I said, I don't have a fuel card. You said I won't have one for like 90 days, so it's coming outta my pocket for reimbursement.

I'm not willing to get rid, ripped off. He's like, oh, I'll pay for all this. Yeah. With fuel prices being on the way they were back then. Yeah. You know, fuel prices went through the roof, you know? Yeah. Shortly after. And, and it's never, it's an ongoing thing, you know, the way, the way fuel prices, you know, go up and down.

It's ridiculous. It, it should never happen. Wow. I just wanna, I know especially since diesel fuel's a byproduct of gasoline, it doesn't cost that much more to make, it's like it shouldn't, it shouldn't cost more than regular gasoline. It just shouldn't ever. I agree. And some people, and I don't mean this as a story time, but some people say that, Electric vehicles are the route to go.

No, but summers are getting hotter and as we found out this summer here in Phoenix. Yep. Electric vehicles of all types, whether it's an electric bicycle. Yep. Electric motorcycles, doesn't matter. Electric car or electric semis. They've been catching fire. Yeah. Their batteries parked in their garage have been catching fire.

So a lot of it. Yeah. So that's, they have to go back to, they haven't quite, they haven't quite fixed that problem yet. They're gonna have to go back to the drawing board. So, meanwhile, All right. By locking fuel caps. All right. Good to know. Nice. That was my bonus price to reiterate, life hack number one.

Park parking overnight. Find a well lit area. Mm-hmm. All right. Life hack number two. Emergency kits. Get yourself an emergency kit, flashlight, first aid kit. Uh, extra fuses. A little, little tool kit, something hammers. Yeah, something like that. Whatever you might need. Uh, life hack number three, organized. Get yourself organized.

Get some organizational bins. Make sure you label 'em so it's easy, easy to find stuff. Number four, find a way to get your curtains tied back. Yep. You know, a hanger, uh, bungee cord, bunge of cords, bind your clips, whatever it takes. Whatever it takes, it'll, you'll appreciate it. Uh, number five, plan your, plan, your route.

Um, we always, we we're old school, so we had the Rand McNally maps, the laminated ones, so we actually physically looked. You know, at the route now they got G p s. So get a good g p s that is definitely made for trucks. It'll tell you about low bridges, restricted roads, stuff like that. Um, and it will tell you, you are not allowed to go on this road.

Mm-hmm. Life Act number six. Uh, stay healthy on the road. Pack yourself some healthier things. Uh, water, um, nuts cheese. Nuts cheese. Crystal light, iced tea that's not sweetened, you know, that type of stuff. Mm-hmm. Um, also him taking a drink made me think, keep up with your electrolytes, especially in hot weather.

Yes. I forgot that. Yep. Number seven is, is keep a spare key hidden somewhere. Mm-hmm. Whether it be in a magnetic box or not. I wasn't a fan of the magnetic boxes. I had a key hanging, zip tied. Yep. Uh, in the engine compartment, but if you weren't looking for it, you ain't gonna find it. Life hack number eight.

It's really basic. Don't forget your pre-trip and post Trip and, yep. Pre, pre and post Trip. If you stop, check stuff out. Hey, kick your tires. Check your lights. That's the way I always look at it. Yep. Every time I, every time I stopped, before I got back in the truck, kick the tires, check all the lights. It takes nothing to walk around that truck.

That's true. And it makes you, it'll make you healthier too. This is true. Extra little pacing. Move bitch. Get out the way. Get out the way, bitch. Move anyways, number nine. Number nine was, uh, get a good mattress. Mm-hmm. Get a good quality mattress and comfy bedding. It'll, uh, better night's sleep. Better rest makes you feel better all around.

Invest in your rest. I, I like that. That's great. I remembered it twice in a row. Boop. Life hack number 10. Use reflective tape. Mm-hmm. Replace it, keeps 'em on hand and replace it when it goes to where, you know? Yep. Because backing into the dock beats the hell outta the back. You know, some people hit the dock so hard that you swear they're trying to move the building and, uh, Janet had a bonus hack.

Secure your fuel and use your cruise. Cruise control. Yeah. Locking, locking your fuel caps. If you, if you, if you, if you're an owner operator, I recommend it. Yeah. Um. And definitely use your cruise control. Definitely. When you, when, uh, applicable. I say, yeah. Don't do it in when you're, don't use your cruise control in the city.

'cause it makes no sense. Stop and go traffic. No. But out on the highway. Yes. When you're heading to the highway, use your cruise control. Awesome. Okay. Awesome. Good hacks. Hope you all enjoyed this. We did. Thank you for watching. Be sure to, you know, subscribe to our channel and, uh, you know. Hey, did we tell him about the big giveaway?

Yeah, we did. We're gonna reiterate on it on it though, but as long as they're here at this point in the stage, don't forget to subscribe to our channel. Mm-hmm. Uh, because we will do more tips and tricks like this down the road. And the only way you're gonna know about 'em is if you're subscribed to our channel.

So, and don't forget to subscribe to our more 18 Wheel Talk channel that'll have our short videos, uh, bloopers, outtakes, uh, from all our. Podcast episodes from day one. Just putting, starting to put stuff together as we go. Uh, but we're gonna rehash some of the old stuff. Um, so you want to go there, join our fan club, 18 wheel talk.com/fanclub.

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Four lucky winners. Huge, huge prize. Yeah. There we go. There you go. Okay. We're gonna give, and, and maybe a little bit of, and some of the, It might be. And, uh, don't forget to get your free taco on Taco Tuesdays, labor Day Tuesdays from now until, uh, labor Day, the first Tuesday in, in September, I believe.

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