New products from allied members

ALLIED members delivered brief presentations regarding new products or developments in the trailer industry:

PSI's MTIS system provides savings

Steve Robinson of Pressure Systems International said its tire-inflation system provides 1.8% higher miles per gallon and a savings of $730 a year per trailer, according to a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) study done in May.

Tire life is extended by 10%, according to Goodyear, Michelin, and Bridgestone engineering data books, saving $200 a year per trailer.

No pre-trip inflation is needed and maintenance is lower, saving $150 a year per trailer.

Roadside service calls due to tire issues are reduced or eliminated, saving $350 a year per trailer.

ThermALERT warns the driver of elevated wheel-end temperature and provides savings of $1200 a year per wheel-end failure and $23,100 per trailer fire, according to the CK Commercial Vehicle Research Study 2005. Robinson said fleets in all categories are specifying ThermALERT, including FedEx, Old Dominion, JB Hunt, and Kroger.

“Tire-inflation systems are steadily gaining popularity in food-service fleets, and for good reason: They eliminate many of the concerns noted earlier regarding under-inflation's impact on fuel economy and operating costs,” he said. “These devices connect tires to a vehicle's compressed air supply and maintain pressures to within a few pounds of a set level. The results include: improved fuel consumption; flats, blowouts, and road-service calls are almost completely eliminated; tires with slow leaks can be completely filled within a mile; tire life can be extended; and labor and downtime costs are significantly reduced.”

According to FCMCA field operational fleet tests, “improper tire inflation can hike tire-procurement costs by 10% to 13%, cut fuel economy by six-tenths of a percent, and accounts for at least one roadside service call per year, increasing the operating costs on a truck by $600 to $800 per year.

“Preliminary results from the Sheetz test found that the test fleet had a 1.8% increase in fuel economy over the control fleet, and that the tires on the control fleet showed faster wear than those on the trucks with tire-pressure-monitoring and inflation systems.”

He said more than 80% of fleet tire problems are caused by improper inflation. Under-inflation leads to: higher fuel consumption from increased rolling resistance; accelerated and uneven tire wear; and heat buildup that destroys casings. Payback for a typical fleet is less than one year.

Robinson also discussed CSA 2010, saying that the penalty is eight points for a flat tire (out of 10 max), eight points for less than 2/32" of tread, eight points for a damaged tire, and three points for an under-inflated tire.

“Drivers will leave fleets that operate equipment that won't pass inspections and risk their livelihoods,” he said. “Given the high severity of a flat-tire violation, carriers will have to evaluate use of automatic tire-inflation systems. CSA 2010 will increase demand for ATIS retrofits.”

He said PSI's system provides profit opportunity for dealers.

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