Used DAF XF: 10 common issues
The DAF XF is, as we have said, a very sturdy and well-built tractor unit, so there have been very few major component failures reported. Nothing mechanical is completely faultless, however, so here’s a list of things operators have told us may crop up:
1. Hub seals
Larger fleets report a noticeably high number of instances where hub seals need replacing.
2. Brake discs
Replacing brake discs often requires the hub to be sent away to a specialist to have the seized mounting bolts drilled out. DAF sells a complete new disc and hub assembly on an exchange basis.
3. Rear axle modulator valve
Wiring for the rear axle modulator valve is prone to breaking down within its protective sleeving. Check for temporary repairs that have been left to become permanent.
4. NOx sensors
NOx sensors often need replacing. Check to see if this has already been done.
5. Heat shields
Reports of heat shields corroding. Check for evidence this is beginning to happen.
6. Gauge clusters
Some reports of gauge clusters in the dashboard cracking for no apparent reason.
7. Wheel wings
Examples of the wings behind the front wheels cracking, especially across the joints and at the bottom where they meet the spray-suppression flaps.
In theory, drivers should use the air dump before getting in and out of the seats, but many don’t. This can result in the outside edge of the seat squab giving way, especially if the driver is of a larger build. Check before buying, then educate to avoid recurrence.
9. APU valves
APU valves on the air system are prone to corrosion, probably due to their low-slung position. Avoid by paying particular attention to this area when washing the vehicle.
10. Air pressure
Vehicles prone to losing air pressure very quickly when parked up overnight. The problem is usually the exhaust brake solenoid, which is positioned alongside the engine and therefore prone to repeated expansion due to heat followed by contraction on cooling leading to a gap.
Lies end in disqualification for transport manager
A transport manager has been disqualified for two years after a traffic commissioner found she had lied about her role within several haulage firms.
Scotland’s TC Claire Gilmore said Andrea Gardner had provided her office with misleading information regarding her employment and the hours she worked as a transport manager.
Gary Smith, director and transport manager of Bullet Express, told a public inquiry he was unaware Gardner had external transport manager duties and although she was not the named transport manager at his firm, she did have a significant role in Bullet’s transport operation.
Another company, S&B Removals, was also unaware that Gardner – its transport manager – was working for other companies.
However, the TC noted that when it found out, she was removed from its O-licence and replaced.
A third operator, Microcycle, did not attend the PI but instead notified the TC’s office that it wished to surrender its licence.
Gardner admitted that between 2012 and 2018 she submitted TM1 forms on at least five occasions that did not include details of her employment with Bullet Express.
The forms also exaggerated the hours she intended to work, or was working, as an external transport manager for the firms that had hired her.
She said she feared that if she had been truthful then she would not have been appointed as transport manager, given the extent of her other duties.
In a written decision, TC Gilmore said: “It became clear during the inquiry that Ms Gardner had hidden the extent of her duties from Bullet Express, her principal employer, and from all the operators for whom she had worked as an external transport manager.”
The TC said Gardner had also misled a DVSA traffic examiner during his investigations and pretended she was out of the country when in fact she was working in her full-time position at Bullet Express.
Gilmore said there were positives in the case, including Gardner’s enthusiasm and competence in her role as transport manager and as an advocate for equality in the industry, but she had also deceived her office and the firms she worked for.
“If Ms Gardner wishes to resume her career as a transport manager in the future she will be required to appear again before me and convince me that she is fit to be trusted as such again,” she added.