for trailer reefer units
can prevent fuel outages
Mar 18, 2011 9:44 AM
Carrier Transicold’s new FuelCheck ultrasonic monitoring option for Vector and X2 Series trailer refrigeration units is designed to help reduce operating costs and protect the integrity of the cold chain by alerting drivers when low-fuel situations could lead to a system shutdown. It also enables fuel-consumption tracking, helping to improve fuel management across entire fleets.
Service calls due to units running out of fuel and losing their prime can be among the most costly maintenance expenses faced by a fleet, according to Kevin Williams, Carrier Transicold trailer product manager.
“Those avoidable situations can also inconvenience a fleet’s customers and risk the integrity of cargo,” he said. “Fuel prices are at their highest levels in two years and are projected to stay that way for some time, according to US Department of Energy reports, so fuel consumption monitoring and analysis are more important than ever.”
FuelCheck software tracks the fuel level via the DataLink data recorder of the refrigeration unit’s Advance microprocessor control. Such information is important for fleet efficiency and can also help spot problems such as fuel theft, especially when monitoring is done remotely via telematics.
In use, the Advance microprocessor continuously monitors the level of diesel in the refrigeration unit’s fuel tank, as sensed by the FuelCheck ultrasonic transducer mounted at the top of the tank. Unlike capacitance sensors, ultrasound measurement provides accuracy regardless of fuel type, be it low-sulfur diesel, a biodiesel blend, or fuel with special conditioners or additives.
If the fuel level drops below 15% for more than 30 seconds, the refrigeration unit’s LED light bar glows yellow to warn the driver, and the control unit’s message center displays “Low Fuel Warning.” If the fuel level drops below 10% for more than 60 seconds, the refrigeration system automatically shuts down to prevent loss of prime in the fuel lines.
“It’s essential to the integrity of the cargo and the proper operation of the refrigeration system to ensure that it doesn’t run out of fuel,” said Williams. “Once the tank runs dry, air can be drawn into the system, and a technician will need to bleed the fuel lines before restarting. The FuelCheck option helps avert this, enabling the driver to restart the system as soon as the tank is refilled, without incurring the cost of an emergency call-out or requiring any other technical intervention.”
For more information about the FuelCheck option, visit www.trucktrailer.carrier.com.
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