In this time of rising fuel costs, any fuel saved can grow into a big savings.
Having almost 30 years in the Trucking Industry, I have seen many new ideas come along, some good, some bad. The industry has had its share of new and improved gimmicks to save fuel costs, extend oil change intervals, etc.
When Mr. Frank Perhats contacted me about installing Autotherm on trucks, at first I blew him off as another snake oil product salesman. I talked to him on the phone as he tried to convince me to have him show me his new product. During the past 18-34 months, I have worked with Frank in adapting his system, which has been in the automotive markets for a number of years, to Class 7 and 8 trucks. I have over this time suggested some changes to his system to try to keep it as simple as possible. All electrical connections of the system are inside the cab, protected from the weather and salt. The only connection outside the cab is at the epoxy-sealed pump with a weatherpak connector. The fan, the A/C clutch bypass and all relays fit into a small area in the cab.
I have installed this system in four of five different manufacturers’ vehicles in about two hours. As anyone in the business knows, if you can install the first one in two hours, additional installations should take less time as you gain experience.
Does it work?
I installed the first unit to please Frank. We pulled the truck outside on a 10° day with about a 20 mph wind. We ran the truck to operating temperature of 185° and shut it off. I turned on the AUTOTHERM and went off to eat lunch. When I returned an hour later, I found Frank sitting in the cab eating an apple without a jacket on. I was surprised. Two and ½ hours later, the Autotherm kicked off. A system that will keep a cab warm without running the engine and wasting fuel got my attention.
In this time of rising fuel costs, any fuel saved can grow into a big savings!
When I see idle times on trucks at 15% to 45% of total hours and multiply that by the amount of fuel used in one hour, I am convinced this system should save its cost and more in one winter.
The driver only needs to flip a switch one time in the fall and the automatic system will run on its own, only shutting off
automatically when the engine temperature drops below a certain setting or the battery voltage drops below a set limit.
I have worked with Frank on Autotherm over the past two years free of charge, although he did give me a unit for my pickup truck for the winter. If anyone has questions, feel free to contact me at the phone numbers given below and I will answer any questions you may have.
J.P.& S. Truck Service