Tag: Van Refrigeration

The Importance of Customized Van Refrigeration

Many businesses have built their foundation on the performance of their specialized vehicles, particularly those that utilize truck and van refrigeration. As technology continues to grow, newer, more innovative methods are being developed to improve their efficiency. This includes using the most effective ways to customize reefers. There are several factors you want to consider while exploring customized truck or van refrigeration options:

Cargo Differences

Before customizing your cargo vehicle, you must consider what kind of refrigeration is needed. For example, frozen goods, dairy products, food, and floral services all require different temperature controls to maintain the product. It’s important to recognize those needs in order to implement the right customization for truck or van refrigeration.

Equipment Needs 

There are several viable options that can help improve fuel economy and storage capacity. When it comes to customizing the interior of the vehicle, consider options like adjustable shelving, pre-kitting, wireless tracking, and dual cargo temperature controls.

Pre-kitting allows the drivers to consolidate their routes and lower truck inventory. This helps transition to smaller vehicles with better fuel efficiency and fewer maintenance costs. Businesses today are taking advantage of technology growth and aligning their products or services to grow with it. Pre-kitting is a popular method of increasing revenue, saving on operation costs, and improving payload efficiency. 

Wireless tracking is another growing trend that allows operators to monitor their customized van refrigeration unit. With this tool, they are able to keep track of the vehicle’s speed and the idle time. Additionally, it helps keep track of fuel economy and the fuel cost needed to operate your fleet.

Temperature Adjustments

 Customized van refrigeration does not have to be a difficult and confusing process that exceeds your wallet. Having a top-notch temperature display and control system that saves on energy costs is only one of the customization benefits offered at Advanced Temperature Controls. Mobile refrigeration has been able to keep up with advancing technologies, which includes ways of saving on energy costs while improving operational efficiency. With these types of customizations, you can easily track temperature variances with a digital temperature control system, with displays in the cargo area and in the cab. 

Proper Insulation

Proper insulation is an integral part of the customization process because it helps maximize desired temperature retention. High-performance van refrigeration units most often utilize the top of the line high-density foam insulation to gain that reputation. Having proper insulation in your reefer prevents exterior temperatures from getting in while preventing interior temperatures from escaping. Insulation maintains the desired temperatures for quality cargo refrigeration needs and protects products from getting contaminated or damaged by preventing air, heat, or moisture from getting in.

Roof Mounted versus Nose Mounted Systems

If you are using small, medium or large vans or trucks, customizing your reefer with a roof mounted unit would be the ideal choice. Having a delivery fleet of frozen products, soft drinks, or dairy products that use vans, for instance, would require certain specifications. The amount of insulation and recommended temperatures of the products during transport would need to be taken into account. Furthermore, the average outdoor temperature and the amount of heat the products actually give off will need to be considered. Once these factors are figured out, the amount of refrigeration for the unit can be decided.

For larger boxed trucks or trailers a nose mounted refrigeration unit would be recommended and requires unique reinforcements in the front wall to support the weight or the unit.

Direct drive refrigeration units are great for food service delivery, dairy treats, and floral services. With customized van refrigeration from Advanced Temperature Controls, you will not have to worry about having fewer options than a diesel powered system. Operators will have just as many benefits, like easy access temperature controls, great fuel economy, and smooth operation.

Choosing Van Refrigeration Solutions

 Advanced Temperature Controls (ATC) understands the importance of customized van refrigeration. We specialize in tailoring reefers to fit cargo and operators specifications and needs. Keeping up with advancing technologies is tantamount to meeting the demands of a growing industry. Mobile refrigeration is a competitive market and Advanced Temperature Controls offers customized solutions to fit the needs of any fleet. Meeting all regulatory and safety requirements for delivering fresh or frozen products won’t be a hassle when you have the right customized van refrigeration solutions.

A Brief History of Van Refrigeration

It’s hard to imagine life as we know it today without delivery vehicles and in particular the compact refrigerated van. Before the emergence of mobile refrigeration, ancient cultures used to cut ice from frozen lakes, ponds, and glaciers to meet their refrigeration needs. Today’s growing demand for inner city delivery of refrigerated products has solidified the importance of the compact van and ATC’s products for van refrigeration.

The Early Days


During the early days of mobile refrigeration, perishable freight was transported using the railroad. In the mid 1800’s the Massachusetts Western Railroad company was attempting different ways of keeping cattle meat from spoiling by transforming rail cars and trailers into ice boxes. Several methods were attempted like filling trailers with ice, which ended up causing discoloration to the meats. It was not until 1851 that the Northern Railroad Company developed the first insulated boxcar, however, it was only able to function in colder weather and climates. These limitations motivated other railroad companies and farmers to develop a more functional ice boxcar that could be used through all terrains for transport.
Refrigerated rail cars were first patented in 1873 to support the growing beef industry

Image is property of Refrigerated Specialists Inc

In 1877 an inventor, Gustavus Swift brought forth the idea of cooling an entire car by having the air circulate through the boxcar and through the ice itself. In 1878, Andrew Chase developed a well insulated, ice based trailer with a ventilation system. He placed the ice in the roof compartment and this method allowed the chilled air to flow down, keeping the whole boxcar cool. Both methods of ice based mobile refrigeration were adopted and brought success to companies like the Union Stock Yard and Chicago Slaughterhouse. In addition to transporting to local areas, they were able to transport meats across the country without worrying about spoilage.

The Growth of Mobile Refrigeration

The ice being used in the early days was cut out of bodies of water and had to be quickly transported, but other discoveries were being introduced in order to lessen the burden of collecting ice. Different cooling methods, like dry ice, were being implemented, which expanded companies that specialized in transporting perishable freight because they were able to send their products across the state. These methods especially took off when the combustible engine in automobiles took center stage.

Eventually, by the 1940’s ice based transport methods began getting replaced by mechanical refrigeration systems. This brought rise to the first manufacturer to develop mechanical mobile refrigeration, U.S. Thermo Control Company. By WWII the methods for refrigerated transport were adopted by ships and airplanes. This made it possible to transport frozen goods as well as medical supplies, like blood for transfusions. Afterward, van refrigeration and truck refrigeration, also referred to as reefers, helped spread the growth of the frozen foods industry.

Van refrigeration spread as its’ popularity grew among transport, farming, and food companies who sought more efficient and faster ways to sell their goods. They no longer had to rely solely on railways and trailer/boxcar refrigeration, especially with the advent of the interstate highway system. Van refrigeration and other reefers at this time continued to experiment with different cooling methods, some utilizing evaporated liquid gas while others used coolant systems.

Maintaining Temperatures

The cooling mechanisms used since the early days have continued to improve because the importance of maintaining temperatures is vital. Without proper cooling and temperature control, meat would spoil, ice cream would melt, fruits and vegetables would rot, flowers would wilt, even medical supplies would be compromised. Regardless of what kind of freight is being transported, you want to ensure that proper insulation and ventilation methods are used for van refrigeration. This means having ready access to temperature control systems before, during, and after transport. Maintaining proper temperature control is especially important when considering the distances that the freight will have to go, whether it be for local or international transport.

Contact Advanced Temperature Control (ATC) Refrigeration

 ATC Truck Refrigeration specializes in proper temperature solutions, customized reefers and van refrigeration units. Our systems are designed to perform and built to last and feature an InCab control to set and monitor the cargo area temperature. The refrigerated solutions offered will meet all your needs whether you are transporting frozen entrees, tropical plants, or beer, wine, and other beverages. Contact us for more information on our systems.