Dry Van Vs Reefer - Work Differences?

Topic 32263 | Page 1

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The Pelican's Comment
member avatar

So in terms of work, what does a reefer driver have to do that maybe a dry Van truck would not?

Is it a more complex job than dry Van?

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

BK's Comment
member avatar

So in terms of work, what does a reefer driver have to do that maybe a dry Van truck would not?

Is it a more complex job than dry Van?

Not that much difference. You need to learn how to push a few buttons on the reefer control device mounted on the reefer unit. Like programming a microwave. Important to monitor the fuel level in the trailer tank and the box temp of the trailer (fuel gauge mounted on tank, digital display on the control device for temp). Always checking the set point temperature found on the bills of lading for each load. When at the fuel pumps, first fill the tractor tanks, DEF if needed, then pull ahead to fill the reefer tank. Easy to learn, easy to do.

I like pulling a reefer trailer more than a dry van. The extra weight of an empty reefer trailer is a better ride than an empty dry van, in my opinion. And you have to learn how to get trailer wash outs, especially after meat loads.

All in all, I am glad I switched to a reefer company. I like the longer trips OTR and it’s cool to pull a reefer (pun intended).

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

Navypoppop's Comment
member avatar

A lot of the deliveries are to food warehouses with usually long unload times and lumper fees.

The Pelican's Comment
member avatar

Does this mean that dry Van drivers typically unload their cargo themselves? How common is it for OTR for drivers to unload their cargo?

A lot of the deliveries are to food warehouses with usually long unload times and lumper fees.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.
Ryan B.'s Comment
member avatar

So in terms of work, what does a reefer driver have to do that maybe a dry Van truck would not?

Is it a more complex job than dry Van?

Set temp and mode settings for the reefer. Monitor trailer temp during transit. Report any variances in temp that are outside acceptable range. Majority live load and unload freight. Lots of detention at shippers/receivers. Trailer washouts after some loads, meat loads and plant loads, especially.

Shipper:

The customer who is shipping the freight. This is where the driver will pick up a load and then deliver it to the receiver or consignee.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

Truckin Along With Kearse's Comment
member avatar

No. Reefer does not have to unload themselves. They may choose to, but detention often pays more than the unload pay Also drop and hook rates differ from company to company and even your experience level. Prime for example has enough trailers that it is drop and hook about 50 to 60% on one side. Now that I am approaching 7 years ...OMG been here 7 years... I get a higher percentage with dnh on at least one side

Even In dry van... A small company may not drop and hook at all depending on the amount of trailers they own.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

Drop And Hook:

Drop and hook means the driver will drop one trailer and hook to another one.

In order to speed up the pickup and delivery process a driver may be instructed to drop their empty trailer and hook to one that is already loaded, or drop their loaded trailer and hook to one that is already empty. That way the driver will not have to wait for a trailer to be loaded or unloaded.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

RealDiehl's Comment
member avatar

Does this mean that dry Van drivers typically unload their cargo themselves? How common is it for OTR for drivers to unload their cargo?

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A lot of the deliveries are to food warehouses with usually long unload times and lumper fees.

double-quotes-end.png

In my experience, extremely rare. Reefers just take longer to unload for some reason. Maybe they have to be more thorough and inspect each pallet more carefully bc often the merchandise is perishable. IDK

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

The Pelican's Comment
member avatar

Can you explain what drop and hook means?

No. Reefer does not have to unload themselves. They may choose to, but detention often pays more than the unload pay Also drop and hook rates differ from company to company and even your experience level. Prime for example has enough trailers that it is drop and hook about 50 to 60% on one side. Now that I am approaching 7 years ...OMG been here 7 years... I get a higher percentage with dnh on at least one side

Even In dry van... A small company may not drop and hook at all depending on the amount of trailers they own.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

Drop And Hook:

Drop and hook means the driver will drop one trailer and hook to another one.

In order to speed up the pickup and delivery process a driver may be instructed to drop their empty trailer and hook to one that is already loaded, or drop their loaded trailer and hook to one that is already empty. That way the driver will not have to wait for a trailer to be loaded or unloaded.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Ryan B.'s Comment
member avatar

Can you explain what drop and hook means?

double-quotes-start.png

No. Reefer does not have to unload themselves. They may choose to, but detention often pays more than the unload pay Also drop and hook rates differ from company to company and even your experience level. Prime for example has enough trailers that it is drop and hook about 50 to 60% on one side. Now that I am approaching 7 years ...OMG been here 7 years... I get a higher percentage with dnh on at least one side

Even In dry van... A small company may not drop and hook at all depending on the amount of trailers they own.

double-quotes-end.png

Drop and hook is dropping a trailer (could be loaded, could be empty) and then hooking up to another trailer to haul (could be empty, could be loaded). It's pretty rare to drop an empty trailer to pick up an empty, but it can happen in isolated cases for company needs.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

Drop And Hook:

Drop and hook means the driver will drop one trailer and hook to another one.

In order to speed up the pickup and delivery process a driver may be instructed to drop their empty trailer and hook to one that is already loaded, or drop their loaded trailer and hook to one that is already empty. That way the driver will not have to wait for a trailer to be loaded or unloaded.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Harvey C.'s Comment
member avatar

double-quotes-start.png

So in terms of work, what does a reefer driver have to do that maybe a dry Van truck would not?

Is it a more complex job than dry Van?

double-quotes-end.png

Not that much difference. You need to learn how to push a few buttons on the reefer control device mounted on the reefer unit. Like programming a microwave. Important to monitor the fuel level in the trailer tank and the box temp of the trailer (fuel gauge mounted on tank, digital display on the control device for temp). Always checking the set point temperature found on the bills of lading for each load. When at the fuel pumps, first fill the tractor tanks, DEF if needed, then pull ahead to fill the reefer tank. Easy to learn, easy to do.

I like pulling a reefer trailer more than a dry van. The extra weight of an empty reefer trailer is a better ride than an empty dry van, in my opinion. And you have to learn how to get trailer wash outs, especially after meat loads.

All in all, I am glad I switched to a reefer company. I like the longer trips OTR and it’s cool to pull a reefer (pun intended).

Bruce, when you left Schneider you wrote that you preferred not to pull a reefer. Was it because of the noise and anticipated difficulty in sleeping? Or because of anticipated longer unloading times? Glad it has worked out for you.

Michael pulls a reefer for Marten and most of his deliveries are live unload, anywhere from 15 minutes (!) to about 5 hours, but usually 2-2.5 hours. He usually drops an empty trailer and picks up trailer already loaded, maybe 75% of the time. Last week he hauled a dry load in his reefer to help out another fleet in his company and he had to make 4-5 stops to unload that which he has never done with refrigerated loads at Marten. He sleeps pretty well in most conditions but says when it's very hot he would prefer to park overnight up by Truckee where it's cooler so that he doesn't hear so many reefers running constantly. When he drops off a trailer he is required to make sure that the fuel is at least half full (I believe) as the customer might not get to unloading it right away. He's had to take reefer units in for repairs a few times because of problems with the refrigeration units (sometimes the trailer he was pulling but at least once when he was just asked to take in a problem trailer from a drop yard).

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

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