Top 10 of 17 — Thermo King power management tools

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Battery life can be a challenge in trailers that use the power for far more than lights alone. Ask anyone who runs liftgates if you need proof.

This year, Thermo King unveiled a family of power management tools in the form of a boost charger, auto-start module, and electric pallet jack charger.

The boost charger ensures liftgate batteries remain powered, and comes in the form of 20- and 30-amp models. Backing up that component is a new auto-start module. If batteries run low, it activates a Precedent Series alternator on the reefer unit. This also features low-voltage protection for the auxiliary battery to keep liftgates lifting and lights, uh, lighting.

Rounding out the system is an electric power jack charger that offers 120-volt power inside trailers for power jacks. It draws power from the liftgate battery pack, but also offers low-voltage protection for the liftgate itself.

Other Top 10 picks for the year include:

Over the Air engine programming

Paccar’s 12-speed automated transmission 

Accuride ROLLiant Hub System 

SAF-Holland’s lighter AeroBeam suspension

Truck-Lite’s smart trailer system 

Meritor’s high-efficiency linehaul tandem drive axle

Bendix’s greener air dryer cartridge

PeopleNet’s wireless backup camera

FlowBelow’s removeable fairing

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John G. Smith is Newcom Media's vice-president - editorial, and the editorial director of its trucking publications -- including Today's Trucking,, and Transport Routier. The award-winning journalist has covered the trucking industry since 1995.

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