What Is The Most Reliable APU, Currently? (1 Viewer)

TruckerRon

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I have owned a Carrier Comfort Pro and loved the features, though I HATE the control module! It's like the old days when you just bought a new sophisticated VCR and had to sit and LEARN how to set it up!

Anyway, I'm purchasing a brand new Kenworth W900L soon and want to install a reliable APU so I won't have to run the engine to condition the cab.

The other thing I loved about the Comfort Pro was it would kick in automatically if the voltage of the batteries dropped below 13 volts and recharge the truck batteries. I had run the batteries down one time and couldn't start the truck... so I set the control module up to auto start when it got down to 13 volts. I ran it for 30 minutes and VIOLA! The truck started! That was a cool thing cuz it would have cost me a fortune to get someone to come out to where I was in the Boonies.

I was thinking of the Evolution... but I've read several issues with that APU on this board. So, I question it.

Any advice/insight on this will be much appreciated!
 

Mike

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I was thinking of the Evolution... but I've read several issues with that APU on this board. So, I question it.

I think you will hear more issues regarding this unit because it is more widely used than the Carrier.

Only thing I have had to do to mine is replace the alternator 3 times in almost 6 years. It's a relatively inexpensive ans easy replacement though.

If I were buying another one, it would be the Thermo King
 

mndriver

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Comfort pro is a generator based system.

Tripac is an alternator/ inverter based system.
 

TruckerRon

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So it won't charge my batteries in the truck when they get low like the comfort pro does? Great, Thanks!
 

Redneck Bob

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I have a carrier apu, in 6 years had to replace the a/c comp. and exhaust pipe. it does alright just isn't strong enough on a 100+deg. day.
 

Mike

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So it won't charge my batteries in the truck when they get low like the comfort pro does? Great, Thanks!

Yes, it will. It's set for a specific voltage, and when it reaches that voltage, the unit starts up and charges up your batteries.

Also has the arctic package available. Coolant temp reaches 30 degrees, the unit starts up and warms the fluids up to keep the engine warm.
 

TruckerRon

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I have a carrier apu, in 6 years had to replace the a/c comp. and exhaust pipe. it does alright just isn't strong enough on a 100+deg. day.
That IS a problem, as I live in Phoenix and have had the same issue. I have to run the APU AND the truck to keep it manageable.
 

ironpony

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That IS a problem, as I live in Phoenix and have had the same issue. I have to run the APU AND the truck to keep it manageable.
I had good luck getting my TriPac worked on in Phoenix at Thermo King.

I also vote for TriPac. If you find a new one too pricey for your taste, the Joplin TK does sell refurbished units.
 
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mndriver

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So it won't charge my batteries in the truck when they get low like the comfort pro does? Great, Thanks!
Yes, it will charge the batteries. It runs a Bosch 120/60 amp alternator and monitors batteries in standby.

With an arctic kit, the apu is plumbed into the cooling system as well and will monitor temperature too. Around 30*F, it will start and run until the temp is around 110*F.

It is a liquid cooled 2-cylinder diesel after all.

The air conditioning is a system modeled after a Chrysler system so any shop should be able to service that portion as well.

As to efficient? I had mine in Omaha in august, 108*F day. Hottest day on record for the year.

Discharge temp was 40*F. At 4:30 pm, my interior cab temp was 60*F.

When I worked automotive, any time you got 40*F temp difference from ambient, it was considered good. I was seeing 60+ degrees difference.

110 v power is supplied via a power inverter. The ThermoKing branded inverter is a modified sine xantrex 1800w inverter. If you want, you can install a xantrex freedom HF or similar which would let you plug the inverter in and provide you with 110 volt electrical as well as it’s a full sine wave inverter for electronics as well as a charger for monitoring batteries while plugged into an outlet while at home or a shop.
 
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mndriver

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The cobbled together generator sets most resemble the carrier comfort pro.

A small(I was told 2500w) generator that supplies 12V for battery charging and 110V to a climate control box that provides heat or air conditioning.


What both the comfort pro and tripac have over the home systems is their control box to monitor the truck systems and battery voltage and keep you engine warm.

I’d say stay away from the older tripac legacy systems. The evolution changed to a different case to control rust and got a bigger ac evaporator and larger cooling capacity as a result. They’ve done away with the idler pulley that they design with a plastic idler on it that would wear out after a years use. They’ve also replaced the standard straight 60 amp alternator with a dual 120/60 amp system. When it’s needed, it charges and provides 120 amp 12 volt power and when it’s not, runs at 60 amps out put. Puts less of a load on itself and the engine.
 

mndriver

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If you check with your ThermoKing dealers, they will have low hour takeoff units with under 3000 hours on them for about $5000 installed.

Most drivers will end up putting about 2200 hours annually on a unit.
 

TruckerRon

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I went to the APU Center in Strafford, MO and they told me a new Evolution is 16K!!
Where would you recommend going? I am NOT a fan of the APU Center. I've had some
issues there.
 

Mike

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I went to the APU Center in Strafford, MO and they told me a new Evolution is 16K!!
Where would you recommend going? I am NOT a fan of the APU Center. I've had some
issues there.

Thermo King in Joplin. Best in that area as far as I am concerned.
 

mndriver

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ThermoKing in Minnesota will charge $12.5 for a new evolution.

$5000 for a low hour (under 4000 hours and likely under 2500) used takeoff.
 

mndriver

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All the Thermo kings in Minnesota are the same shop. (Franchise chain.)

Casey would be the guy you want to talk to in Minnesota about a new or used unit.

Ross is the service manager in St. Cloud that takes good care of me.

Albert Lea mn has done me right as well. I haven’t been in here though since 2013.

Once I learned what was what with my units. I just start doing the work myself.
 

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