Powering Productivity with a Hybrid Power System

Maximizing productivity is top-of-mind for many fleet managers, and it’s no different for Scott Cline of Wheeler Machinery Co. in Utah. Responsible for more than 500 rolling assets from acquisition to disposal, Cline puts a necessary emphasis on providing top-tier service for his clients after the sale.

A Partnership Prospers

Keeping up with service demands is no easy task, and Cline is always looking for ways to help make his technicians’ jobs easier and more efficient. So, in 2017, when he heard Stellar® was launching a hybrid steel aluminum mechanic truck body that offered increased payload without compromising strength, Cline took notice. “Our previous body manufacturer wasn’t going to find ways to help make things lighter and work for our needs,” says Cline. “So, we went with Stellar as the TMAX gave my technicians an opportunity to be more efficient at the work they’re doing.”

After seeing so much success with the Stellar® TMAX, Cline and his crew started using more and more Stellar products — and quickly became hooked. So, when Cline learned that Stellar was coming out with their new Hybrid Power Source (aka Hybrid Power System), he talked to his Stellar representative about the opportunity to field test the HPS to see if it would be a good fit for Wheeler.

hybrid power system

Stellar has taken power to the next level with the Hybrid Power Source (HPS), a self-contained power source that utilizes automotive-grade lithium-ion technology to provide a system that is low-voltage, anti-idle compliant and quiet during operation. The HPS allows companies to reduce their carbon footprint by operating hydraulic equipment without the use of the chassis engine.

“My whole goal was to get the most longevity out of my fleet that I could,” says Cline. “I wanted to lower vehicle breakdowns, keep my technicians active and keep the trucks going to service the customers so we don't lose the revenue generation portion of it. The more I can keep the technicians onsite, the better that is for everyone. And with all the emissions controls, we figure about 60–65% of our repairs on our vehicles is due to emissions related issues. So, by allowing that big truck engine to not run and idle and cause so many of those issues, we can mitigate those problems.”

The HPS allows for 100 percent emission-free operation, reduced fuel consumption, decreased engine maintenance costs, quiet operation and compliance with idle mitigation requirements because the chassis engine is no longer needed during equipment operation.

Always Ready to Go

The Stellar HPS is always ready with multiple options to keep the unit charged. It comes equipped with an integrated 48V chassis alternator, allowing the system to be charged from the chassis onsite or while driving to the next jobsite. Shore power charging is also an option with a standard 120V, 15-amp connection to enable the unit to slow charge while parked for the night or when chassis engine charging is unavailable.

Cline’s technician charges the HPS while he’s driving. “No one wants to be without power when you need it, so my technician leaves the switch on and charges it while driving so it’s always ready,” says Cline. “He doesn’t let the battery run down, and he’s never had to plug it in to charge it overnight — but it’s nice to have the option if he needs it.”

Another benefit of the HPS, because it’s electric, is that it has instant torque. “It's as fast as, and in some cases it's faster than, a PTO (power take-off) truck because it has two settings,” says Cline. “My technician has been operating it in the second setting and says it’s a little too fast, which is something I never thought I’d hear. That was a surprising benefit that we didn’t expect. And anytime you can do things a little faster, it helps productivity.”

The Total Package

Overseeing an entire fleet of rolling assets and keeping up with service demands is a major undertaking every day. Having all the benefits of the Stellar HPS helps offer greater peace of mind by providing a powerful, reliable power source. But, don’t take it from us, Cline has experienced these benefits firsthand, “I haven’t heard one negative word about the HPS from my technician,” says Cline. “He’s been impressed with it and so have I. It’s been a great experience overall.”

FAQ: What is a hybrid power system?

A Hybrid Power System is a self-contained hydraulic power source that utilizes automotive-grade lithium-ion technology to provide a system that is low-voltage, anti-idle compliant and quiet during operation. The HPS allows companies to reduce their carbon footprint by operating hydraulic equipment without the use of the chassis engine.

For more information, visit the Hybrid Power System page.

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