Tech Know visits the Carrier facility to see how the job of keeping freight cool in Brisbane is handled on a day to day basis.
Here in Australia we may not realise, but refrigerated units in Australia have to work in the hardest conditions that Carrier experience anywhere in the world. This means keeping the fridges running and the wheels of refrigerated distribution turning is one of those tasks that has to be done, and done well.
Carrier Transicold is a part of the global Carrier organisation, which supplies HVAC, refrigeration, fire, security and building automation technologies all over the world. That means the integrated network of support begins at the factory and ends with the end customer.
Altogether Carrier employs around 50 people around Australia, with many fulfilling maintenance roles in the company’s facilities around Australia. Tech Know visited the Carrier facility in Brisbane to see how the system works.
Carrier customers are looking for a different kind of service in different states. Queensland customers prefer any maintenance work to be done on their own site, while Victorian customers prefer to drop a trailer of rigid into the Carrier workshop for repair. The Sydney operation has an even spread of customers across both preferences.
The Melbourne operation is one of the largest, as this is also where brand new units are stored, as most of the trailer manufacturers the company supplies are based in Victoria. The Sydney operation is the location for the parts warehousing, for the reason that the city is an overnight delivery away from most of the Carrier locations around the country.
Technicians have to be able to handle all of the latest technology as well as working on units which can be as old as 20 years. As we know all levels of technology have moved forward dramatically over this period, but the technicians need to be ready for any kind of problem.
Skilled technicians have access to the global Carrier network with the latest diagnostic tools, software updates and factory service bulletins with the Field Service system giving them instant access to unit history and fleet data as well as manuals and any technical resources required. The state-of-the-art iPhones used as their interface will also supply the data specific to the fridge on which they are working, including service history and any faults which have been detected. The system also handles job allocation and keeps the managers and customers up to date on job progress.
Some refrigeration units may only get any attention when there is a problem, while, at the other end of the scale, some may well get serviced more than necessary to enable maintenance intervals to tie into the maintenance needs of the trailer to which they are fitted. From Carrier’s point of view, normal maintenance is needed every 3000 hours or 24 months, whichever comes around first.
Preventative maintenance is the name of the game with these refrigerated units with, in the latest generation of units, they include machine learning able to flag potential problems by monitoring the unit all of the time. This gives Carrier the ability to swap components out early any avoid unforeseen breakdowns.