Gone are the days when a worker has to stoop down and use a gauge to check every tire in a fleet yard. Once again, technology is transforming the way we accomplish manual tasks. With the new ContiConnect™ Digital Tire Monitoring Platform, fleet managers can check an entire fleet’s tire pressure and temperature data via sensors and a web portal, every time trucks return to the yard. This method can drastically cut back tire inspection and maintenance time, and can pinpoint issues before they become problems on the road.
ContiConnect collects the data using sensors mounted on tires’ inner linings. As trucks enter the yard, a reader station, which is part of the platform, picks up data from the sensors, and relays it to the web portal via a cellular network. This allows fleet managers to immediately access low-pressure alerts, track data, and view analytics. The platform also sends text and email alerts when low tire pressure or high tire temperatures are detected. The sensors can be retrofitted into a fleet’s tires, or factory installed in select tire models. Having the sensors mounted inside tires buffers them from influence from a vehicle’s brake system.
The sensors can be installed in any Continental steel-belted commercial tires from size 17.5 to 24.5 inch, which typically are suited for use on work trucks in Classes 3-8, according to Continental. The key is that the commercial tires are steel belted, so they don’t flex much, keeping the sensors in place in the tires’ linings. Continental’s tires for light-duty trucks don’t have steel belts, so the sensors aren’t used in them.
For fleets that are running Continental commercial tires in combination with other tire brands, or are transitioning to Continental to take advantage of this technology, the company has a customizable program to make this work, including a combination of retrofitting tires in use, and using new tires with the sensors already installed.
The yard reader station ideally is positioned near a fleet’s frequent touch points, such as a washing bay or gas pumps, and the web portal is accessible, like any website, via computers and mobile devices with internet access. The platform is the brainchild of Continental, a premium tire manufacturer, and automotive supplier.
“ContiConnect is the starting point for Continental to become a profound partner for tire-related data services,” says Nikolai Setzer, head of Continental’s Global Tire Division.
Another key component of the platform is the hand-held tool, which connects wirelessly to the tire sensors, and links each of them to its wheel position on the vehicle for accurate identification. The tool is used in the platform’s initializing stage.
Whether a commercial fleet includes a handful of vehicles, or hundreds, converting the process of monitoring tires from manual to automated can save time and money.
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Continental is one of the largest manufacturers of truck, bus, and commercial specialty tires worldwide. Founded in 1871, the company has expanded from tire manufacturer to an added role as solution provider, offering a broad range of tire-related products and solutions, in addition to tires. Find out more about ContiConnect at www.continental-tires.com.