Power inverter popularity surging

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BURNABY, BC – Power inverters that make it possible to run in-cab accessories off truck batteries are becoming an increasingly popular feature in Class 8 trucks, according to one supplier.

Inverter installations on new trucks increased 17% in the past two years, says Mitul Chandrani, senior marketing manager for Xantrex business at Schneider Electric. “And we expect that number to go up another 5% this year.”

Xantrex inverters are offered as a factory-installed option on most new Class 8 trucks, the company says.

“Drivers love inverters since they can power all their household appliances – like laptops, microwaves and TVs, just like at home,” he said. “Fleets are figuring that out, and the easiest thing for them to do is order an inverter as a factory option. It ensures the correct wiring is done, and the inverter is installed in an optimum location. The fit and finish is better as well.”

Truck manufacturers, meanwhile, are increasingly offering inverters that are combined with chargers.

“It’s something we’re glad to see,” Chandrani said. “This way truckers can plug in their trucks at truckstops and locations offering shore power and power all their appliances while recharging their batteries. Then, if they need to run off battery power down the road, they’re fully topped off.”

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John G. Smith is the editorial director of Newcom Media's trucking and supply chain publications -- including Today's Trucking, trucknews.com, TruckTech, Transport Routier, and Road Today. The award-winning journalist has covered the trucking industry since 1995.

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