Shut Off that Engine and Let the APU Take Over

Shut Off that Engine and Let the APU Take Over

Fleet owners are always looking for ways to save money on fuel and maintenance. Idle reduction technology allows fleets to cut fuel consumption, lower vehicle emissions, reduce engine wear, and avoid costly fines for violating anti-idle laws.

Diesel-powered auxiliary power units (APUs) are one of the most common types of idle reduction equipment found on trucks. These portable, truck-mounted generators power climate control and electrical accessories when the main vehicle engine is off. In recent years, APUs powered by alternative fuels such as propane and natural gas have emerged. Battery-powered APUs are also gaining acceptance in fleets as battery technology continues to evolve.

Direct-fired coolant heaters reduce start-up idle time. These units use the vehicle’s fuel to fire a small furnace, warming the coolant, and keeping the engine block warm in cold weather. Coolant heaters can also warm the cab for driver comfort, without running the truck’s engine. In cold weather, engine coolant heaters reduce particulate emissions by 60% or more at initial start-up, and increase DPF service life.

Idle limiter systems further cut down on unnecessary vehicle idle time. These systems use a timer that activates after pre-programmed conditions are met. After a programmed amount of time elapses, the engine shuts down automatically.

  • Detailed service information about these systems is included in TruckSeries, Mitchell 1’s new one-stop, single log-in, all-makes data resource for Class 4-8 trucks