Reefer or Dry Van???

Discussion in 'Questions From New Drivers' started by jgtrucking, Apr 24, 2022.

  1. VA CDL Holder

    VA CDL Holder Medium Load Member

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    I drove for Knight Ref and Knight Trans out of Phoenix, AZ. I can say that I enjoyed reefer more than dry van, but you will have problems finding an empty trailer if you run out of Phoenix, especially a dry van trailer.

    As for the wait times, you will be waiting and waiting a lot if you do reefer. When you deliver to a Walmart Distribution Center, you are going to give them four free hours, and then the detention pay starts. Most other stops the detention starts after two hours. You need to keep track of your time and then compare it to your paycheck. If there is a discrepancy, this is where your DM fixes it for you, if he's any good, after you call in and complain.

    As for extra money doing reefer, I didn't see it, but times have changed since I last drove for them. When I quit in November of 2020, I was getting 44 CPM. They way things are now, I wouldn't start up a truck for less than 60 CPM. The mega companies are very secretive with the wages they pay out. I've been looking around over on FB and there are lots of companies offering 70 CPM, you must have the experience because the insurance company says so, but I can't see how the megas are competing with that wage.

    One thing about reefer is that the average length of haul was longer for me and that cancelled out the long waits.
     
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  3. jgtrucking

    jgtrucking Light Load Member

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    I'm planning on being based out of Las Vegas. In a perfect world, I'd like to do port and rail, but we know that's a mess right now. I'm leaning towards dry van, but haven't ruled out reefer. I really want to get my OTR time in. A year or two max for experience, but then I'd like to end up regional, or even port and rail, IF it gets better. I want to be home more often than not. 4 or more weeks out all the time is not in my long term plans.
     
  4. VA CDL Holder

    VA CDL Holder Medium Load Member

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    The Knight yard over on Berg St. in Vegas is not that big, meaning you may not get a parking slot if you roll in too late in the day. They also do not have a maintenance section if you happen to have a mechanical problem.
     
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  5. 201

    201 Road Train Member

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    HA! Greeting cards, that sure dates you pal, try and find them today, usually stuck way in the back, and FIVE BUCKS!!!,,,but I hear ya'. I did reefer for Crystal Farms, BY THE HOUR, and it was great. I made great money. The only bad part was telling MY boss why it took 3 hours at SuperValu for 4 pallets. Another thing many drivers don't count on, is the warehouse actually runs out of "cold" space, and YOU become their "cold storage" back agin the fence. As a driver for just about every type of trucking, I never saw more aggravation than at cold storage warehouses. "We'll get to you when we can", "oh, didn't they tell you, that all goes on small wood", and my favorite,,"we never ordered that" and the ultimate kiss of death,,"oh, sorry, shift change",,,.:biggrin_2554:,,,dang, that's what was nice about a dump truck, it didn't pay, but unloaded in 25 seconds,,,
     
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  6. jgtrucking

    jgtrucking Light Load Member

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    I was there yesterday. It is fairly small, but they are building a new maintenance facility. Looks like they are expanding. Taking a tour entire facility this morning. I'll know more then.
     
  7. tscottme

    tscottme Road Train Member

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    Reefer customers are like Walmart DC in the old days. They schedule 25 loads per hour to arrive so that their employees can have non-stop work. The fact the customer is screwing up the 20 trucks that are going to have to wait hours to get unloaded is your problem, not the DCs problem. Certain customers will only sign contracts which expempt them from detention pay or have nearly impossible stipulations on their detention pay. Reefer depends on a lot of desperate O-Os or desperate small trucking companies eating the carp sandwich and saying "thank you" so they don't have to streamline their operation and and keep using drug-addict lumpers and Capt Bligh management techniques.

    As to the noise of the box behind the sleeper, where else in society would someone suggest putting a diesel engine on the other side of your bedroom wall will allow you to sleep better? It's something you get used to, like people that live beside a railroad track. It still disrupts your sleep.
     
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  8. jgtrucking

    jgtrucking Light Load Member

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    I took a tour this morning. It is a small, but very clean facility. Everyone was very nice. They are in the process of constructing a maintenance facility. Scheduled to be operational by years end. I got a good impression from it.
     
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  9. Vic Firth

    Vic Firth Road Train Member

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    I’ve run both reefer and dry van, reefer runs can be longer which is a good thing but I prefer dry van loads. I hate waiting in line at midnight or later to deliver a frozen load and dealing with lumpers, especially when you busted your tail to get there on time and they tell you it will be several hours before they can get to you, that can happen with dry van but not nearly as often.
     
  10. snowmantrucking101

    snowmantrucking101 Medium Load Member

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    Knight....man are you in for it. Good luck.
     
  11. Moosetek13

    Moosetek13 Road Train Member

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    It happens often with grocery places, and Amazon live unloads.
    There are certain places that I will avoid because of that.
     
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