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Managed Fleets Saving Money Trucking Industry

Solutions to Optimize Energy Use Across America

solutions to saving energyThis is a guest post from Tim Smith. Tim writes about home improvement and energy efficiency for Modernize.

Government agencies and big industry face fleet-management problems that dwarf simple conservation techniques. Industry uses 25 percent of domestic energy for transportation costs, so finding holistic and sustainable solutions at all levels of manufacturing is essential for optimizing energy usage in the United States. Technologies that are changing the ways government and industry managers look at transportation and fleet management include hybrid cars, hybrid tires, cleaner biofuels, tanks that burn natural gas, hydrogen fuel cells and nitrogen tire inflation.

Reducing Fuel Consumption and Emissions

More people now live in urban areas than elsewhere, a dynamic that’s changed how people live, work and interact. Billions of people living in close proximity requires thoughtful solutions to reduce energy usage, lower harmful emissions and maximize limited resources.

Effects of Using High-purity Nitrogen in Tires

Nitrogen provides a sustainable solution for optimizing energy usage. Scientists and engineers have long known about the benefits of using pure nitrogen in tires, and the airline and NASCAR industries adopted the practice decades ago. Benefits of nitrogen inflation include:

● Delivering up to six percent better mileage than compressed air

● Reducing leakage from tires

● Minimizing rust in auto components, which is caused by the oxygen and moisture content of regular compressed air leaking from tires under high pressure

● Increasing lifespan of tires up to 30 percent by minimizing the harmful effects of oxygen on rubber

Bridgestone, Ford and Goodyear have conducted scientific research that proves nitrogen penetrates tires three or four times more slowly than corrosive air. Tires inflated with pure nitrogen get better mileage, deliver more even wear and increase auto safety.

Cutting-edge Companies and Technology

Businesses and government agencies can lead by example, and NitroFleet99 helps these companies adopt the technology, manage transportation fleets and invest in nitrogen-inflation technology that provides long-term cost and aesthetic benefits. About 70 percent of domestic fuel consumption is generated by the transportation industry, and fleets can save 6 percent in costs right off the top while reducing the 300 million abandoned tires each year by 30 percent.

Developing countries often have advantages when it comes to optimizing energy usage because it’s easier to design efficient systems from the gate than retrofit aging systems to reduce carbon footprints and maximize use of resources. Green transportation technologies for managing fleets are changing the dynamic, however, and companies like NitroFleet99 are providing new technologies that optimize energy use in holistic ways that cut energy use, reduce operating costs and minimize equipment wear. Working with senior management, the company helps its energy partners link energy practices with existing infrastructure and technologies, educate staff about energy savings opportunities and set realistic, evolving goals for reducing energy usage in all aspects of industry and transportation.

NitroFleet99, a company dedicated to the simple expedient of replacing the current tire-inflation systems with high-purity nitrogen, provides a working network of industry partnerships for exploring the benefits of using nitrogen in business and fleet-management applications. Safe, inexpensive and easy to maintain, tires inflated with nitrogen get better mileage and provide other holistic benefits. NitroFleet99 is working to establish a national infrastructure for inflating tires with pure nitrogen from coast to coast. Ideally, this innovation costs as little as $29.95 for filling four tires while generating substantial energy savings and longer lasting tires and auto components. Less wear means less waste in landfills from millions of pounds of rubber.

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Fuel Efficiency Managed Fleets Nitrogen Tire Inflation Saving Money

Saving Money on Gas: 4 Ways Managed Fleets Can Do It

nitrogen tire inflation for managed fleetsFuel costs are one of the biggest costs for managed fleets, but also one of the hardest to decrease without hurting fleet productivity.  Offsetting some of the expenses to drivers may have consequences on employee morale and retention . Reducing usage could mean fewer routes, fewer vehicles on the road, and less revenue overall. Fortunately, with the right data, fleet managers can save money on gas without long-term consequences on the fleet and the company. Here are four ways managed fleets can save money on fuel:

Implementing a Fuel Card Program

Every fleet manager wants to trust their employees, and a fuel card program may seem like a way to “look over everyone’s shoulder” as they refuel vehicles at the gas station. But, a program can eliminate the small non-fuel purchases that drivers add on, such as a soda or a pack of cigarettes. Each individual driver may not intend harm and deceit by adding those purchases, but if every driver is doing that, then every single one of those purchases will add unnecessary expenses to the fleet’s fuel costs. The drivers may not see their small non-fuel purchases as a big deal, but they do mean thousands of dollars spent on items that have nothing to do with refilling the tank.

Considering Fuel-Efficient Vehicles for Upcoming Fleet Purchases

Switching out the entire fleet for brand new vehicles is a massive and expensive overhaul, but when the time comes to purchase new vehicles, opting for more fuel-efficient models is a great way to start. With one or two fuel-efficient fleet vehicles, it’s easy to measure and compare the fuel economy between the old and the new vehicles. After that, those numbers can be extrapolated across a 100- or 1000-vehicle fleet to determine how much gas would be saved if every single vehicle in the fleet was a fuel-efficient model. This data can justify a gradual overhaul or switching out a few more vehicles.

Improving Route Planning with a Fleet-Tracking System

Utilizing a fleet-tracking system will provide a managed fleet with hard data on where vehicles are going and how they are getting there, highlighting various opportunities for improvement. For example, many GPS fleet tracking system show current traffic conditions, so drivers can opt for a different route, reducing travel time and gas usage. A tracking system can also show where any fleet vehicle is at any given time, so if someone needs to be dispatched to a specific location, the fleet manager will know which one is closest and can send that vehicle. Fleet tracking isn’t just to make sure that drivers aren’t using company vehicles for personal purposes on the weekends. The traffic and location data can be used to ensure that gas and time isn’t wasted needlessly.

Using Nitrogen Tire Inflation

Nitrogen can improve fuel economy by 3 percent by keeping tires at their proper tire pressure for longer periods of time. Although regular air can also be used to maintain proper tire pressure, nitrogen tires lose their pressure at a slower rate than those filled with regular air, thus providing the benefits of proper tire pressure (increased fuel economy, increased traction, increased tire life etc.) for much longer. Switching to nitrogen tire inflation does take an initial investment because fleets need to purchase a special machine for the inflation, but much like using a fleet vehicle with better gas mileage, the benefits exponentially increase with each vehicle that uses nitrogen.

Overall, saving money on gas requires tracking and measuring current usage so that the fleet can find ways to cut costs. It’s not enough to say, “we need to use less.” To save money on gas, fleets need to know where is being wasted and improve fuel economy or efficiency in those areas.

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Managed Fleets Nitrogen Tire Inflation Saving Money

Nitrogen Tire Inflation and Our Money Saving Calculator for Managed Fleets

nitrogen tire inflation for managed fleetsWhen managed fleets consider adopting nitrogen tire inflation, the biggest question about the change is the return on investment. If we spend the money on a few nitrogen inflation carts and implement the process, then when will the machines pay for themselves? What benefits will the fleet specifically see from nitrogen, when air is already 78 percent nitrogen?

The main benefit of nitrogen tire inflation is that nitrogen maintains proper tire pressure for a longer period of time than regular air, leading to whole host of other benefits to your fleet. To explain these benefits and how they impact your bottom line, we’re going to go through our money saving calculator and explain each section and how a fleet saves money with each section.

Miles Driven Per Year

The average fleet vehicle drives between 15,000 and 20,000 miles per year, but the average for your fleet may be higher or lower, depending on a variety of factors. Our money saving calculator needs this figure to determine the savings from the next three sections. To clarify, this number refers to the average number of miles for one vehicle in your fleet, since our calculator determines the savings based on one vehicle. It doesn’t not calculate the savings for an entire fleet, although that is easy to figure out once the calculator has the savings for one vehicle. Obviously, the more miles driven in a year, the savings your managed fleet could see from nitrogen tire inflation.

Average Price of Gas Per Gallon

Currently, the average price for a gallon of gas is $3.68. For diesel fuel, the average price is $3.88 per gallon. Nitrogen tire inflation improves your fleet’s fuel efficiency by maintaining proper tire pressure for a longer period of time. Proper tire pressure, by itself, increases fuel efficiency by three percent. Three percent doesn’t seem like a big deal, but multiply that across your 50, 1000, or 10,000 fleet vehicles driving on under-inflated or over-inflated tires, and your managed fleet is wasting money in fuel.

MPG

According to the most recent statistics, the average miles per gallon for U.S. fleet vehicles is 23.2 mpg.  The average for all cars in the U.S. is 24.6 mpg. If you happen to know the average miles per gallon for your fleet, or have a way to come up with that number, then use that number in the calculator. Otherwise, you’re welcome to use the average numbers that we have provided.

Cost of a Full Set of Tires

For a fleet vehicle that has four wheels (versus an 18-wheeler or any other specialized fleet vehicle), the cost of full set of tires is about $600. Besides the four tires, this price also includes mounting and balancing, disposal of the old tires, alignment and the valve stems. Since nitrogen tire inflation improves tire life and tread wear (because nitrogen maintains proper tire pressure for a longer period of time, so the tread wears evenly versus just the middle or the outer edge), a managed fleet gets more out of each $600 purchase. The tires last longer, so a managed fleet gets more value for its money. Because the tires last longer, the $600 purchase needs to be made less often.

Conclusion

If we put the average numbers into the calculator to determine the savings with nitrogen tire inflation (20,000 miles, $3.68 per gallon, 24 mpg and $600), then the annual savings for one fleet vehicle using nitrogen tires is $150.09. For one vehicles, that’s not a whole lot, which is why we don’t focus on encouraging nitrogen tires in the consumer market (we won’t actively discourage it either, to be clear).

But, for a managed fleet of 1,000 vehicles, then the fleet can save $150,000 using nitrogen tire inflation. That is a substantial amount of savings, especially when the fleet considers how much it is currently spending on tires, fuel, maintenance, safety and anything else needed to keep the each of the fleet’s vehicles running. Even for a fleet of 100 vehicles, where the annual savings would only be $15,000, is still the equivalent of a part-time employee. Implementing a nitrogen tire inflation program into your managed fleet may cost $15,000, but it certainly isn’t going to cost $150,000, so the return on investment is clear.

photo credit: State Farm via photopin cc

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Managed Fleets Nitrogen Tire Inflation Trucking Industry

Everything Your Managed Fleet Needs to Get Started with Nitrogen

nitrogen tire inflation programPurchasing a nitrogen tire system is a big decision, and with that decision comes the process of getting started. This process can include educating and training employees, tracking your return on investment, additional maintenance checks, and watching for reduced costs in other parts of your organization. Getting started with nitrogen can be difficult, at least until all those aspects are worked out. Below is all the information you need to get you and your managed fleet started with nitrogen tire inflation: choosing a nitrogen system, implementing that system into your fleet, tracking your fleet’s carbon footprint, and how technology like nitrogen can reduce our country’s energy dependence and fix its infrastructure.

How to Implement a Nitrogen Tire Inflation Program into Your Fleet – Buying the nitrogen tire system is important, but more on that later. What you also need to know as a fleet manager is how to implement that system in your fleet, and change the behavior of your staff so that your nitrogen tires are most effective. This article outlines how to implement this program into your fleet and make nitrogen tires a tradition with your organization.

3 Effective Ways to Improve Fleet Safety – Improving fleet safety is huge toward the bottom line and the efficiency of managed fleets. Nitrogen tire inflation improve the fleet and driver safety, and is just one of the effective ways that you can put in place to day to improve your fleet’s safety.

How to Choose the Right Nitrogen Tire System for You – There are plenty of nitrogen tire systems available with a variety of sizes and features. How do you choose the best one for your fleet? This article covers the factors that are most important to consider before making your final purchase.

Managed Fleets and Ending America’s Dependence on Foreign Oil – Green technology like nitrogen tire inflation can end our dependence on foreign oil. Transportation fleets and the trucking industry doesn’t have to be the demons in America’s dependence on foreign oil, simply consuming energy to keep this country running. By utilizing green technology, they can be part of the solution as well.

How to Track Your Fleet’s Carbon Footprint – In order to practice sustainable fleet management, you need to track your fleet’s carbon footprint and take steps to reduce carbon emissions. Tracking your fleet’s carbon footprint will allow you to know exactly what your carbon emission is and offer ideas on how to cut those emissions. You can’t improve what you can’t measure.

Hybrid Tires and a Network of Nitrogen Services – Transportation accounts for almost 70% of  the fuel consumption in the US. Nitrogen services can change that by turning tires into hybrid tires, and a network of nitrogen services can enable cross-country vehicles to top off their tires with nitrogen. They can also ensure consistent tire maintenance, no matter where a truck or managed fleet vehicle stops for a routine check.

5 Great Fleet Vehicle Picks – Good fleet management includes picking the right vehicles for your fleet. After all, nitrogen tire inflation isn’t the only way to improve the sustainability of your fleet vehicles. Here are 5 great fleet vehicle choices that add to your bottom line.

How the Cost of Carbon Affects the Trucking Industry – Climate change is much more than severe weather. It’s also about the economic costs that hit hard and affect everyone, as illustrated by the $65 billion in economic damages caused by Hurricane Sandy alone. Learn how the trucking industry can contribute to reducing climate change and the cost of carbon.

photo credit: DiamondBack Truck Covers via photopin cc

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Guest Posts Managed Fleets

Fleet Cars, Mobile Phones and PCs: Are You Choosing the Right Tools for Your Team?

tools for your managed fleetThis is a guest post from Mike Burns. Mike is an auto mechanic and father of three from New York.

Your fleet team is ready to take the road. You can send them out in their own battered vehicles, a move that won’t impress prospective clients at all, or you can put them in an impressive company car. As a fleet manager, you get to make tough decisions about what your team needs, and these decisions affect both the functioning of your team and its image.

Hit the Road in Style

When choosing cars for your company fleet, you’ll need to consider tangible issues like price, financing and safety specifications as well as long-term costs like insurance, fuel and maintenance. The most important intangible factor to consider is the image projected by the fleet vehicles, which are ambassadors of your company so they need to blend with your image. If you sell contracting supplies, a tough looking SUV, a Jeep or a truck are all great options but if you sell luxury goods, you might want to consider classic-looking sedans.

Don’t forget to give your team the tools that they’ll need on the road like GPS and OnStar. If possible, work with one of the fleet programs from the world’s major car manufacturers. General Motors offers fleet and commercial vehicles, ideal for everything from construction work to outside sales to delivery vehicles. By working with a fleet program, you will get specialized solutions to meet your needs.

Power and Memory or Sleek and Mobile?

When buying computers for your team, think first about how they are going to be used. If you’re running design software or other programs that require a lot of storage, you’ll need PCs. But if all of your programs are located on the cloud, you can give your employees laptops or tablets. The Ultrabook 2 in 1 inspired by Intel is the perfect choice if you want to give your employees the benefits of a laptop and the convenience of a tablet. Ultrabooks start at only $480 when you shop at Best Buy.

If you want to save money on computers, consider scrapping that idea altogether. Instead, instigate a BYOD (bring your own device) program. The UK Telegraph explains that BYOD programs can save businesses in training costs as employees get to use laptops they are already familiar with. It also increases the possibility of employees taking their projects home with them so that they can put in some extra hours.

Talking, Texting and Closing the Deal

When it comes to phones, your staff needs unlimited data, texting and minutes. Without those features, you may face overage charges at the end of the month, or your employee may get cut off during an important data download or while talking with a client. Remember to convey the right image with your phones as well. Although they are not as prominent as vehicles, it doesn’t reflect positively on your brand if your employee is using a battered, old flip phone.

Consider working with a company like T-Mobile that offers unlimited calling and data on Android smartphones with competitively priced plans. The company’s Even More Plus plans don’t require contracts, a feature that gives you the flexibility you need to keep up with your waxing and waning staff.

Related Links

How to Track Your Fleet’s Carbon Footprint

3 New Year’s Resolutions for Managed Fleets

How to Implement a Nitrogen Tire Inflation Program into Your Fleet

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Managed Fleets Nitrogen Tire Inflation

How to Choose the Right Nitrogen Tire System for You

nitrogen tire inflation systemPurchasing a nitrogen tire inflation system is a big deal. Not only is it a large investment, but not all systems are created the same. Choosing the right system that will serve your managed fleet to your needs requires knowing several factors in how you will use the nitrogen tire system and how quickly you need to service each vehicle. Here’s how to choose the right nitrogen tire inflation system for your managed fleet:

Number of Vehicles

The number of vehicles not only determines how many nitrogen carts and how much nitrogen capacity you need, but you also need to know if you plan to fill every vehicle or if you plan to fill two or more vehicles at a time. Systems come in various sizes and capacities, so you need to consider the number of tires you’ll be servicing each month as well as if you plan to service multiple vehicles at once. Knowing this will ensure that you purchase a system that can handle the volume of your fleet at a speed that works for your drivers and maintenance crew.

Space and Mobility

With your nitrogen tire system, you need to know which characteristic is more important for your overall fleet management. If space is tight, then you probably don’t want a system that is too large or has too many hose reels that require additional storage space. You may not necessarily want a mobile nitrogen tire program, as you may not have the space to move the carts around so they can reach every single tire. Of course, if you have the space, then mobility might be a more convenient option.

Naturally, you’ll need to balance space and mobility with the number of vehicles you plan to service. Mobile may be tougher to have it you’re servicing over 1200 tires per month, but could be a nice alternative in case a vehicle just needs to be topped off and doesn’t need a full maintenance check. But, mobile is easier if you have a small fleet and are capable of handling more individualized service and maintenance for your fleet vehicles.

Purchase for Future Use

A nitrogen tire inflation system may be a hesitant purchase for many managed fleets, since the practice is brand new and not something that’s already been tested with the fleet. This may lead to a hesitant purchase, one that doesn’t include the ability to scale or to consider future use in terms of servicing larger or additional vehicles. For some managed fleets that aren’t projecting or planning to increase the size of their fleets, purchasing a system that meets current needs isn’t a bad idea. However, there are instances where purchasing for future need is a good idea. If your company is planning to purchase more, or bigger, fleet vehicles in 2014, or if you’re going to add nitrogen tire programs to other locations or maintenance centers, then doing a bulk purchase may be smarter and better for the bottom line.

Related Links:

How to Implement a Nitrogen Tire Inflation Program into Your Fleet

3 New Year’s Resolutions for Managed Fleets

How to Track Your Fleet’s Carbon Footprint

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Managed Fleets Nitrogen Tire Inflation

3 New Year’s Resolutions for Managed Fleets

new years resolutions for managed fleetsThe first full week of 2014 is almost over, and resolutions may seem like a tradition that companies don’t normally do, this doesn’t mean that your managed fleet can’t have one or two goals for the year. After all, setting out to make this year better than last year isn’t a bad idea, and setting a fleet management resolution can help you do that. Here are three New Year’s resolutions for managed fleets:

Improve Safety and Compliance

Improving safety and compliance could mean tackling a variety of issues. For some fleets, improving safety could mean working with drivers to reduce accidents. For others, it could mean working on maintenance so vehicles don’t cause problems for drivers. Some managed fleets may decide to work on safety training and policies. Whichever way you choose to improve safety and compliance, it’s certainly a resolution on every managed fleet’s list, as these statistics show:

  • Drivers age 36-45 had the highest rate of accidents in 2011
  • The time of day with the highest rate of accidents is from 11 a.m.-12 p.m.
  • 86% of drivers drink and eat while driving
  • 77.7% of accidents occur on clear, sunny days – This one doesn’t necessarily mean weather isn’t a safety issue. It could mean that many fleets avoid driving in severe weather as a safety precaution, or reduce the number of vehicles on the road. It could also mean that drivers get more cautious as the weather worsens, lessening the chance of accident because they are paying much more attention to their surroundings.

Improve the Bottom Line

Reducing costs/increasing revenue is one of the biggest challenges facing fleet managers. It’s a constant struggle as some of these costs and revenue sources, such as fuel costs, are outside your control. The economy can also make a big impact, affecting the overall business climate as well  as the willingness of customers to continue services. Improving revenue and/or reducing costs could also mean targeting a specific problems, such as improving driver productivity, improving driver retention, lowering insurance costs, and improving route efficiency.

Overall, improving the bottom line is a balancing act where everyone needs to be kept happy as initiatives are put into place. You may want to reduce vehicle acquisition costs, for example, but you also need to purchase vehicles that your drivers will like to use. You also don’t want to invest in an initiative that doesn’t equate to savings, or recoup its investment fast enough.

Improve Your Carbon Footprint

The most effective way to improve your carbon footprint is to work on your fuel efficiency. That’s what Midwest retailer Meijer did, and credits its 60% carbon footprint reduction to fuel efficiency and the implementation of the EPA’s near-zero emission standards. Because of these efforts, Meijer is now the largest all-clean diesel fleet in North America.

Fuel efficiency isn’t the only way to improve your carbon footprint. If your fleet is growing over the next 12 months, then you can consider great fleet vehicle picks such as hybrid or electric vehicles as they would reduce your footprint. Your fleet could also start by coming up with metrics to measure your carbon footprint. You can’t improve what you can’t measure, and unlike safety and revenue, the carbon footprint doesn’t easily come with data and indicators to show you who well you’re doing.

Although there are many ways to meet these resolutions over the next 12 months, there is only one way that can accomplish all of them: nitrogen tire inflation. Putting nitrogen in your tires improves safety and compliance by keeping tires at proper pressure and tire for longer periods of time. This decreases the chances of a blowout. Having tires at proper tire pressure for longer periods of time improves your bottom line by reducing your fuel and maintenance costs. You’re no longer wasting gas and reducing tire life because your vehicles have under-inflated tires. Nitrogen tire inflation also improves your carbon footprint because there will be fewer tires in landfills and less gas used in the long run. All of that is great for the environment.

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Fuel Efficiency Managed Fleets

5 Great Fleet Vehicle Picks

This is a guest post from Bob Carlson. Bob retired last year from a 40-year career teaching high school math. Blogging keeps him out of trouble with the wife.

For fleet operators looking to add vehicles to their fleet, the overall cost of maintaining and operating any size vehicle is a major consideration. Any decent fleet operator is always looking for ways to cut costs—for instance, some fleet owners are installing nitrogen-filled tires on their vehicles, thanks to their reliability under heavy use and their fuel-saving potential. The data analysis firm Vincentric recently held its annual Best Fleet Value awards, highlighting the top models for fleet operators based on a variety of factors, including operating and opportunity costs. Here are five notable vehicles that got a nod for great value in their respective categories:

Ford C-Max Energi SEL

Photo by Mariordo via Wikimedia Commons

The C-Max Energi is one of several hybrids on Vincentric’s list, but it’s the only plug-in hybrid that made the cut. The C-Max offers the lowest taxes and opportunity costs of all the current picks over the three-year ownership period, but offers higher-than-average fuel costs in its segment.

Ford F-150 XL Reg Cab 2WD

Photo by IFCAR via Flickr

The F-150 isn’t just a hit with consumers in search of a reliable and dependable truck. Fleet buyers also see the half-ton full-size pickup truck’s proven credentials in the field and elsewhere, as well as its lower-than-average insurance, maintenance and operating costs. The F-150 also offers a unique fuel-saving proposition in the form of the 3.5-liter EcoBoost six-cylinder engine, capable of achieving an EPA-estimated 16 mpg city and 22 mpg highway in two-wheel drive guise. However, it remains to be seen how fleets will cope financially or time-wise with the engine’s added complexity. According to Ford, sales of the EcoBoost-equipped F-150 have already reached 400,000 units in the United States.

Nissan Leaf S

Photo by Tennen-Gas via Wikimedia Commons

According to data from Vincentric, the Leaf S offers better-than-average depreciation and extraordinarily low taxes due to federal and state incentives, but it’s on par with others in its segment in terms of fuel, maintenance and repair costs. The Leaf’s all-electric drivetrain also provides fleets with an economical way to shrink their carbon footprint and flex their eco-friendly credentials.

Buick Enclave Convenience FWD

Photo by IFCAR via Flickr

The Enclave is one of four Buicks that made the cut, taking top honors in the convenience four-door utility segment. Vincentric notes that Buick’s full-size crossover offered the lowest lifecycle costs in 15 of its 20 deciding criteria. Not only does it offer the lowest three-year ownership costs across the board, it also surprises many premium fleet owners with its exceptional level of luxury and comfort.

Hyundai Sonata GLS 2.4

Photo by IFCAR via Wikimedia Commons

For 2013, the Sonata proves itself as a competent choice in the mid-size sedan segment, especially in the face of strong competition from Ford and Toyota. As with last year’s Sonata, the 2013 model offers three-year fuel, depreciation and repair costs that are well-below segment averages.

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Guest Posts Managed Fleets Sustainability

How To Track Your Fleet’s Carbon Footprint

saving fuel managed fleetsThis is a guest post from Robert J. Hall,  president of Track Your Truck. Track Your Truck is a leader in GPS vehicle tracking systems and software for small and midsized companies.

Cars, trucks, and other modes of transportation are responsible for about 28 percent of all GHG (greenhouse gases) produced in the United States. With the emergence of the “Green Movement,” businesses are honing in on methods for controlling GHG emissions and tracking their fleets’ carbon footprint. Fuel cost reductions, government assistance, low road taxes, and a positive image all stand to be gained from a sustainable approach to fleet management, but mostly businesses are concerned with the state of our planet’s environment.

A greener planet is good for all of us; here’s how your fleet can be part of that.

GPS Fleet Tracking

Among many other benefits, a GPS fleet tracking system can significantly reduce fuel consumption, subsequently reducing your company’s carbon footprint. GPS fleet tracking consists of hardware on your vehicles and software for the management of your fleet from a computer. GPS fleet tracking systems offer an overhead view of many different aspects of your fleet.

GPS fleet tracking makes oversight into the activities, locations and fuel consumption of your drivers possible, allowing for the most efficient use of your equipment. Utilizing GPS fleet tracking allows you to bring down out-of-route miles, lower carbon dioxide emissions, and lower costs all around.

Oversight and management of your fleet this way typically reduces idle time, further reducing fuel consumption. GPS fleet tracking systems notify you when any of your drivers are idling for an excessive period of time so action can be taken. Additionally, GPS fleet tracking can provide you with speed alerts and reports. If one of your drivers is speeding, you will be alerted. In addition, the driver will automatically be reminded to slow down. This eliminates excessive fuel waste as a result of speeding and increases the efficiency with which your fleet operates.

Maintenance

You can save on fuel waste with regular maintenance to your vehicles. Making sure that your fleet is in top shape ensures that it is also running at its most efficient level. GPS fleet tracking systems can be utilized, making a maintenance schedule simple.

Regular oil changes, spark plug replacements and changing air filters can make your vehicles burn fuel more efficiently, requiring less fuel and ultimately reducing GHG emissions. Through integration, your GPS fleet tracking system can alert you when maintenance is needed, saving time and keeping your fleet running at its most optimal level. You’ll automatically know when filters or tires need replacing or other work needs to be done.

Electric and Hybrid Vehicles

Lastly, a move to electric or hybrid vehicles for your fleet is one scenario that should be considered. Don’t be deterred by the initial cost; moving to a hybrid or completely electric fleet has proven a high ROI thanks to overall fuel savings.

Moving to a hybrid or electric fleet is the ultimate sustainable approach to reducing your carbon footprint. Additional benefits include lower road taxes and the positive perception that comes with “going green” in the eyes of the public. The U.S. government also provides assistance to companies who are switching to alternative fuels, providing technical support and public recognition.

Not only are there tax breaks, assistance, and cost reductions to be gained when you move to sustainable fleet management; you are also reducing emissions and doing your part to improve Earth’s environment, a noble goal.

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Managed Fleets Nitrogen Tire Inflation Tire Care

Why Mechanics and Auto Shops are Marketing Nitrogen Incorrectly

marketing nitrogen tiresRight now, if you want to purchase nitrogen for your tires, you have to go to a mechanic or an auto shop. You can get nitrogen tires somewhere like Costco, but you usually will only get nitrogen tires if you purchase a new set of tires. If the ones on your car are just fine, then the neighborhood auto repair shop is your best bet. It’s great that nitrogen tire inflation is available at these places, but these same places are also marketing the practice incorrectly, saying things that simply aren’t true about nitrogen tires while not understanding the science behind the practice. Here are what mechanics and auto shops are getting wrong about nitrogen tire inflation when trying to sell it to consumers:

Nitrogen is Less Volatile than Oxygen. Thus, it’s Safer in a Fiery Crash

Although nitrogen is less volatile than oxygen, the point that nitrogen is safer in a car accident is false and doesn’t mean anything. Once the car is on fire, the car is on fire, and nitrogen tire inflation isn’t going to prevent that fire or make the fire any smaller. The way this argument should apply is that since nitrogen is less volatile, your tires are less likely to overheat and to result in a blowout. There are 23,000 collisions per year due to a tire blowout, and this is a safety problem that nitrogen tire inflation can actually solve.

The Rubber of Nitrogen-Filled Tires Last Longer

This one’s important to note because naysayers will respond to this with, “What about all the air on the outside of the tire?” It’s a valid question, but the degradation of the inside isn’t on the rubber It’s on the axle, where the oxygen and water vapor can rust the axle over time. Axle’s are much harder to replace than a tire, and aren’t looked at as often. Also, the rubber ends up lasting longer because the proper tire pressure that comes with nitrogen leads to even tread wear. Even tread wear means your tires last longer because you don’t have to change them as quickly because of uneven tread wear. Although any excessive tread wear isn’t a good thing, if that tread wear is uneven (where it’s predominantly in the middle or on the outside of the treat), you will have to change your tires sooner because the uneven tread wear isn’t safe to drive on.

Air is 78% Nitrogen

Get this into your head, as most people consider this common knowledge, and waving this fact off with, “Well, I don’t know,” or “I’m not a scientist” only makes the practice look like a scam. This is true, so the point that needs to be emphasized is that oxygen and water vapor are the problems. Naysayers like to throw this one out there, thinking that 12% more nitrogen can be all that important, so it’s extra important to know the counterargument and to not get stumped by the resistance. Nitrogen tire inflation eliminates the oxygen and water vapor that’s in air, and this 12% increase in nitrogen concentration is substantial (as well as a 100% decrease in oxygen and water vapor) and it makes a world of difference in fuel economy and tire life.

This equipment is expensive, and you need to make your money back on that equipment. We understand that, but the way to do that isn’t to dupe people and not have counterarguments for those who aren’t as easily duped. The way to make money from this service isn’t to push it on as many people as possible. Once you understand the science and the pitches you’re making to these people, then you can be prepared to show that nitrogen tire inflation isn’t a scam, but is a practice that provides value to drivers.

Related Links:

How to Implement a Nitrogen Tire Inflation Program into Your Fleet

Nitrofleet99 Helps Drivers Green Their Vehicles, Create Hybrid Tires

How Nitrogen-Filled Tires Improve Safety

nitrogen tire inflation white paper cta

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