"Defective" prim air guage

Discussion in 'Experienced Truckers' Advice' started by J Man, Feb 20, 2024.

  1. J Man

    J Man Medium Load Member

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    Curious how others feel about this situation. Company has a spare truck and doesn't want to drop money into fixing it. The Prim Air guage comes up thru the red, then buries itself way beyond the last printed number (125 psi) somewhere around where I would guess 150 psi would be. If you do a bleed down on the air it eventually falls back into the red zone and the brake handles pop like they should.

    I have fought this all the way to the top of this company and they insist this is not a red tag because the air system works and the guage works, it just isn't accurate. They insist the mechanics have tested it to make sure it moves up and down with the rising and falling air pressure (it doesn't) but let's be real, how would you even trust it since it's obviously malfunctioning.

    So, am I crazy to refuse to drive it? I've called the local DOT port and they weren't even interested in hearing about it, let alone giving me any feedback.
     
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  3. Ridgeline

    Ridgeline Road Train Member

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    Note it on the MVIR and document the conversations you had with the people at the company and drive it. As long as you can operate in a safe manner, as long as the low air warning system functions, drive it.

    Cover your butt but don’t make it an issue that can turn bad for you.
     
    J Man Thanks this.
  4. J Man

    J Man Medium Load Member

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    Thanks, I could have worded my post better. In all my years of driving I've never had to do a full port inspection so have no idea if the guage is ever actually inspected by the port, or if they only care about the leaks they find. This company used to be good about safety items so their refusal to care about this kind of blindsided me.
     
  5. tscottme

    tscottme Road Train Member

    Is there a DOT requirement that the gauge be accurate? DOT requires the low air warning & both brake systems set themselves if PSI is low enough. This isn't a hill I battle over or sacrifice myself on.
     
    J Man Thanks this.
  6. North Pole Nightmare

    North Pole Nightmare Medium Load Member

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    I'd be curious to know what the actual pressure is.The compressor should cut out at 125-135.Some compressors you can turn up and get 150 if you want,but it would just wear out faster.If the truck was set up to pull doubles it should have a bigger cfm compressor,but a mechanic may have just turned the compressor up for unknown reasons.If the compressor comes on once the pressure drops to 95-105,it's probably ok.Just building more pressure than you need.
     
  7. snowwy

    snowwy Road Train Member

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    What does the secondary read?
     
  8. J Man

    J Man Medium Load Member

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    Secondary reads 125 and acts normal. On these particular trucks the last marking is 125, they don't have markings up to 150 like some gauges do.
     
  9. J Man

    J Man Medium Load Member

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    According to our shop the system is cutting out around 125 psi and just the gauge is faulty.
     
  10. North Pole Nightmare

    North Pole Nightmare Medium Load Member

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    I was driving a 2019 Freightliner,drove it about a year and it had 620 thousand on it.Bossman said to park it and take a newer truck that had 300 thousand miles on it.They sell them when they get to 650,000 miles.The new truck had some annoying issues.The low air pressure came on at 100 psi.So when you released the brakes the air dropped and you always got the warning lights and bell ringing.I asked them to fix it,they mechanic looked at it and said it had to go to Freightliner to get the setting adjusted.Its supposed to come on at 55 psi.The lane departure warnings would go off every time you passed an exit on the interstate.They didn't want to take it to Freightliner so I got my old truck back.
    I wouldn't drive it if the primary gauge is faulty.It may or may not pass a roadside.
     
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