A Simple Solution for Maintaining a Diverse Fleet

Every day, Monroe, N.C.-based, Union Power Cooperative is responsible for delivering reliable power supplies to more than 65,000 residents in rural areas of North Carolina. The company is part of a nationwide alliance made up of more than 680 local, consumer-owned electric cooperatives in 46 states that supply electricity throughout rural American towns, making it the country's largest electric utility network.

For Union Power, the reliability of its equipment is an essential factor in keeping electricity flowing to its customers' communities, even under the harshest conditions. As Ted Price, Director, Fleet Maintenance, and a 25-year company veteran, stated, "In our business, we don't have the time for downtime.

"We have more than 130 vehicles and pieces of heavy equipment in our fleet that must be ready to roll on a moment's notice," he continues. "If a major storm rolls through the region we need to have every single piece of equipment out in the field so we can get electricity back to our customers as soon as possible."

Single-source solution

With vehicles ranging from heavy-duty diesel equipment and pickup trucks to large excavators and utility service trucks, you might think that several different motor oils would be needed to protect the engines and extend the life of the equipment. "Actually, we only use one brand of oil for all of our equipment, service trucks and diesel pickups," Price pointed out. "That's Mobil Delvac."

For more than 25 years, the entire service fleet at Union Power has relied on Mobil Delvac 1300 Super 15W-40 heavy-duty diesel engine oil. In that time, "we have never experienced equipment failure due to engine problems or oil consumption," Price said. "To realize how impressive that is you have to remember that our trucks and equipment often run idle for several hours and are also exposed to extreme operating conditions when hydraulic lifts and drilling equipment are in use in the field."

"Mobil Delvac 1300 Super is formulated to provide outstanding levels of protection for all diesel engines across a broad range of on-highway and off-highway applications," said Yeong Kwon, product offer advisor, commercial vehicle lubricants, ExxonMobil Lubricants & Specialties. "Mobil Delvac can help deliver performance beyond the boundaries of conventional oils because its formulation includes Trimer Core chemistry - a powerful additive technology that resists oil degradation, reduces sludge build up and prevents wear, ultimately extending drain intervals and engine life."

Some fleet maintenance managers think working with premium oils means high-tech or complex maintenance programs; however, that is not the case. "We stick with a basic oil drain interval of 250 hours on every piece of equipment in our fleet," said Price."It's that simple."

A team approach

To help enhance fleet performance and keep up with the latest trends in engine design and lubrication technology, Union Power has, for more than 11 years, turned to Mobil lubricants distributor, Hagan Kennington Oil Company, based in Gastonia, N.C.

"We look at the folks from both our distributor, Hagan Kennington, and ExxonMobil as valuable extensions of our team," Price said. "As a result, they have extensive knowledge of our business, our operations, and what our maintenance needs are for all of our equipment."

Of all the customers he has worked with, Jason Miller, distributor sales representative for Hagan Kennington Oil Company, believes, "Union Power has one of the most diverse fleets in terms of equipment and applications.

"With such a diverse range of trucks and heavy equipment, I must say the ability to use one high-performance oil, like Mobil Delvac 1300 Super, for every vehicle and piece of equipment sure makes life easier and more convenient," he continued. "I think it gives fleet managers like Ted the opportunity to help simplify inventory management and generate enhancements in productivity and cost savings when you know you can buy one brand of oil to service your entire fleet."

As Union Power Cooperative and its fleet continues to grow, there is no doubt in Price's mind that he can continue to maintain his fleet just as he has for 25 years with the help of Hagan Kennington and Mobil Delvac 1300 Super.

"Hagan Kennington has been a great partner for Union Power for more than 10 years," said Price. "We trust them and their ability to help keep us up to speed on new regulations and emissions standards, as well as keep us in the loop on the best products available to meet our needs. Mobil Delvac has also proved its ability as a high performance product and I don't plan to change to any other oil any time soon."