“It’s three times harder on an engine to idle than to pull a load.”

An owner/operator

Executive Summary

Truck stop electrification brings not only 120V AC power to trucks at truck stops and rest areas but also provides heating and cooling through the driver’s side window. A pedestal or overhead truss is used to pump the heat or air conditioning into the cab via a hose inserted into a window adapter.

Drivers can pay for use of the system with credit cards, fuel cards, or sometimes cash.

While there is no limit to the length of time a truck can access power, a lack of adequate infrastructure has prevented widespread adoption of this technology.

Introduction to Idle Reduction
Common Fleet Strategies

To overcome the lack of availability of locations with electrified parking spots, combining truck stop electrification with a fuel-operated air heater and an inverter/battery charger is a good option for some fleets. However, this combination does not provide a way to cool the cab when there is no power distribution system available.

What Others Are Saying
Decision-Making Tools

There are already a wide variety of payback calculators for any given type of idle-reduction system. In an effort to meet the industry’s need for more information, we have also developed a high-level payback equation to aid fleets in choosing the right combination of technologies.

Decision-Making Tools

Manufacturers

All truck manufacturers offer an optional AC power port to enable truck stop electrification. 

Conclusions

Truck stop electrification addresses many of the reasons drivers idle: to keep cool, to keep warm and to power hotel loads. A driver simply plugs into the system and can have access to the services for as long as he or she needs them. The biggest drawback is the lack of locations with electrified parking spaces and the limited number of spaces at those locations that do have electrification. The reputation of truck stop electrification also suffers from a major supplier that exited the market leaving inoperable infrastructure in place.