Covering up: A look at aerodynamic wheel covers

Covering up: A look at aerodynamic wheel covers

Fuel-robbing air turbulence around tractor and trailer tires and wheels may seem unavoidable. However, FlowBelow Wheel Covers can reduce that costly reduction in drag and help fleets save fuel, the company says.

FlowBelow says that its Wheel Covers have a benefit in long haul truckload, LTL, flatbed and tank truck operations. More recently it has seen growing interest in wheel covers among regional fleets that operate day cab tractors as those operations also seek to realize fuel savings.

FlowBelow estimates that the Wheel Covers represent approximately one third of the fuel saving potential of its complete tractor AeroKit, which includes the aerodynamic wheel covers and tandem fairings that manage airflow around the exposed rear wheels of the vehicle. Using an ROI calculator, the company shows how a $350 wheel cover kit that saves 1% on fuel in a fleet that spends $50,000 per year on fuel can save $2,150 over the course of five years. In that scenario, the wheel cover kit pays for itself more than six times over.

FlowBelow Wheel Covers mount to any existing dual or wide base single wheels and are available in white, black, polished chrome, grey and platinum. The covers secure to the wheel using a bracket with a latch that attaches to the hub with four nuts. The wheel can be removed without removing the latch and the covers provide easy access to wheels and valve stems for inspection and maintenance using the quick release latch’s push and turn motion.

Adding between 10 and 12 lbs. per set of four tires, FlowBelow wheel covers are made of TPO plastic and stainless steel, making them impact resistant at extreme temperatures.

FlowBelow wheel covers are offered on Freightliner Cascadia Aero and AeroX, Kenworth T-680 Advantage, Peterbilt Model 579 and International LT and RH model trucks. The covers are also a factory-installed option on Strick Trailers in conjunction with the company’s Trailer AeroSlider System that includes a center fairing and aerodynamic mud flaps.

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