Carrier Transicold of Detroit, a regional dealer representing the Carrier Transicold Division of Carrier Corp., has signed an agreement to sell, install and service the idle free electric APU. The dealer serves the metro Detroit area with its fleet of six mobile service vehicles.
An auxiliary power unit (APU) is an aftermarket component that can be added to a Class 8 over-the-road truck to help the driver reduce discretionary idling.
The Idle Free electric APU differs from other idle-elimination solutions because it is the most complete system available. It meets all driver needs -- heat, air conditioning and electricity needs -- without jeopardizing the productivity and longevity of the truck. The Idle Free APU is the only complete electric APU on the market and will therefore generate the fastest ROI of any system because of the significant fuel savings, according to the company.
Mark Sparkman, President of Carrier Transicold of Detroit, says that adding the Idle Free electric APU to its offering of aftermarket products will help them serve their customers better.
"We pride ourselves on providing products that help our reefer fleet customers be more productive in the field," he said. "The Idle Free system – especially with the Reefer Link technology – has proven to be a tremendous time and money saver and we are excited to start offering it to our customers."
How it works
Robert Hopton, CEO of Idle Free Systems Inc., says that being able to provide a means to eliminate all of the reasons that drivers idle trucks is one of main differentiating factors of the Idle Free APU.
"Heat, air conditioning, hotel needs and engine pre-heat. These are why drivers idle the trucks. We designed a comprehensive, integrated APU solution that addresses all of these needs, completely eliminating the need for drivers to idle the truck," he said.
In addition to being the most complete, the Idle Free APU is also one of the most efficient APUs on the market. This is because the system runs on alternating current.
Electric APUs that run on direct current suffer from lower efficiency, which translates to shorter APU battery life, less run time, and, most problematic, the risk that the APU could jeopardize the truck's ability to start. D/C-based systems, due to their higher amperage draw for the air conditioner, rely on the truck's starter batteries as an additional power source to run the APU. Operating the APU risks draining the truck's starter batteries and therefore not being able to start the truck, thus negatively impacts productivity.
Idle Free's A/C-based electric APU, on the other hand, is a more efficient system, resulting in longer APU battery life and completely eliminating any need to use the truck's starter batteries to power the APU. The A/C-based system means the truck's batteries will never be drained by the APU.
The Reefer Link technology is a patented version of the Idle Free APU system that helps make energy from the reefer unit available to drivers for unlimited run-time of the APU.
The refrigeration units on the trailers used to transport perishable loads are powered by 50 hp diesel engines that are mounted to the front of the trailer. These reefer units have their own 12 volt electrical systems that are separate from the truck's electrical system. When a truck is equipped with an Idle Free electric APU that includes the patented Reefer Link technology, it can be connected to the reefer unit's electrical system to take advantage of the excess electric energy being created.