How Do Truck Scales Work

Truck Scales Work, Operation, Components, and Types

Truck Scales are an integral part of the logistics and transportation industry. Truck Scales or weighbridge truck scales ensure that truckers do not carry excess loads that exceed the permitted weight limit while on the go. These scales ensure road safety as well as help adhere to the laws by keeping weight limits checked.

Truck scales promote better efficiency in operations, by helping businesses do fair billing and load materials accurately as required. These truckload weighing instruments are the backbone of the transportation and logistics industry without them completing an operation with accuracy and efficiency is a dream far from reality. 

These instruments ensure precise weight measurements for a variety of different applications such as logistics, waste management, construction, mining, agriculture, etc. These big weighing machines are built robustly to deliver precise performance and high durability for an extended period of time. There are two different ways of measuring truck loads, one is through the axle, and the other is gross weight. In this blog, we are going to dig deeper and enlighten ourselves on the fundamentals of a truck scale and how it works.

How Do Truck Scales Operate?

Operating a truck scale or weighing station is not child’s play, it requires a lot of patience and following traffic rules inside the weigh stations. Truck scales are operated carefully keeping in mind there are no chances of mishaps which might lead to heavy damages to workers, goods, as well as other property in the truck scale. The truck drivers need to drive slowly and watch for directional as well as speed signs to adhere to the rules for increasing efficiency in weighing operations. These are the fundamental steps of how a truck scale weighing operation works.

Positioning Of The Vehicle

Proper positioning of the vehicle prior to weighing is necessary. Drivers will usually get directed by markings or lights mounted on the scale platform so as to make sure that the truck is properly aligned to board the deck of the scale for taking proper weight measurements.

Measuring The Loads

As the truck settles on the scale, at this point the load cells beneath that platform get compressed according to the pressure of the weight applied to them. This deformation translates into electrical signals, with the detail that these precisely represent the vehicle’s mass.

Signal Processing

The junction box handles the signals from load cells and compensates for temperature variances. This is a critical step as this ensures that the system is able to give stable and reliable weight readings.

Display and Data Management

The weight indicator receives the processed signals and displays the weight readings of the measured trucks. This component is often user-friendly, easy to use, and even holds data for record purposes or could have integrated other systems in order to capture the process of handling information well. This is software loaded on the computer system of the truck scales, which provides all kinds of data regarding weighing operations, as well as helps generate a fair bill accordingly.

What Are The Components Of The Truck Scale?

A truck scale is made up of various components that work coordinatively and serve the purpose of displaying accurate weighing results. These components have their own functionalities and each one of them is dependent on the other. The absence or damage to any one of them might result in a total failure in the measurement of truck loads. These are the main components with which a truck scale becomes functional for delivering precise measurements.

The Load Cells

Load cells are the most important part of every truck scale. Without load cells, truck scales are baseless (of no use). These devices take the mechanical force generated by a truck’s weight and turn it into electrical signals. When weight is applied on the deck of the scale, these load cells get compressed, and deliver weight readings according to the pressure of the compression. Positioned conveniently below the scale deck, load cells ensure precise weight measurements.

Deck Of The Scale

The scale platform or the scale decks of the truck scale weighing process serve as a base where load cells support it, and they have a robust build that can withstand the heavy loads of a moving or stationary vehicle and generate dynamic forces. The design of the platform is critical in ensuring accurate readings. The truck boards the scale deck with all the loads, this deforms the load cells by the weight pressure of the truck, and accurate readings are obtained.

The Junction Box

A junk box is where all the intricate wires and electrical circuits are present. The junk box accommodates all the wires from the load cells under a single unit. The electrical signals from the load cells are carried to the junk box. This component is crucial in gathering and processing the data so that it can be transferred with high accuracy to the weight indicator or scale controller. It is crucial to the accuracy of weighing. The junk box safeguards the intricate network of wires from getting exposed to the environment and harsh weather conditions, which can lead to a power surge or disable the truck scale, causing downtime.

Home Run Cable

Home run cables are an important component of the truck scale which connects the scale itself to the scale controller or the weight indicator. This cable carries the main electrical signal from the truck scale to the weight indicator to display accurate weight readings. This cable is well coated and protected with PVC which safeguards these cables from getting exposed to sunlight and moisture, which might damage the home run cable.

Digital Weight Indicator

Digital Weight Indicator or Scale Controller The brain of the operation receives and processes signals from load cells. Besides, modern weight scales are equipped with advanced features like data logging. ticket printing, and a variety of connectivity options to facilitate easy integration with any logistics system. These systems are now totally software-based, that there is software installed on a computer system that is connected to the truck scale through an electrical network, this software produces all the necessary data as well as weight readings which is required for enhancing operational efficiency.

What Are The Various Types Of Truck Scales?

Truck scales come in various sizes, shapes, and types, all of which serve the same purpose, weighing the truck loads with high precision. Each of the types has its own specifications which differentiate them, everything from their durability to their reliability differs depending on the type and size of a truck scale. However, each of them is made to fulfill specific usage and requirements of the businesses. These are some of the most common types of truck scales, available in the market.

Axle Scales

Axle scales also known as axle weigh pads are sets of axle weighing scales; These consider the weight, not on a comprehensive basis but rather by measuring each axle of the entire truck one by one. These scales are mostly portable and can easily be carried to other places. Axle scales help to ensure that axles do not exceed their weight limits and prevent uneven weights from causing damage to the road. These scales measure the weights on each axle and then sum up the weight on each axle to give the weight of the whole truckload.

Weighbridges (Above-Ground)

These heavy truck scales, also known as weighbridges, are stationary large scales that will measure the total weight of a fully loaded vehicle and its freight. They are flat platforms that rest on load cells. Weighbridges are mostly located at points of transportation, warehouses, and border entry points. They are suitable for high transit areas where trucks need to be weighed regularly. These heavy weighbridges can be transported to another place if needed, they are not fixed permanently to the ground. These scales have a much more robust build as compared to axle scales, as they can accommodate the whole truck and freight on their deck.

Weighbridges (Pit or Pitless)

Weighbridges can also be categorized according to their design with a pit or pitless. Pit weighbridges have included a pit or depression in which the scale platform is placed. On the other hand, Pitless weighbridges have scale platforms located above ground. The decision to use a pit or pitless weighbridge is determined by space availability, environmental conditions, and cost problems. Pit scales are permanently installed scales and cannot be moved to other places later on. Pit scales are said to be the most durable and tough build scale which can accommodate heavy loads easily as compared to any other type of scale. Pitless weighbridges are above-ground weighbridges, which do not require a pit for installation.

In-Motion Weighing Systems

In-motion weighing systems measure the weight of the trucks as they move. These systems contain sensors in the road surface or overhead structures that capture weight information without requiring the truck to stop for weighing. In-motion weighing is a good option for massive operations, such as toll booths or highway weight stations. These are faster in measuring weights as the trucks do not need to stop and be stable to obtain weight readings.

Onboard Weighing Systems

On-board weighing systems are installed directly into the truck or trailer. These systems facilitate the provision of real-time weight information to the driver, thus enabling load optimization and adherence to weigh regulations. Onboard weighing is very helpful in industries where there are frequent loads and unloads. You can measure weight using onboard weighing systems on the go no need to locate a weighing station for measuring freight. These scales provide instant weight information which is crucial to measure while on the road.

Portable Truck Scales

As the name suggests, these scales are highly portable, which means they can be carried from place to place and can be used whenever required. The best thing about these scales is they are lightweight and easy to install when you need to weigh truck loads. Businesses that move around a lot need portable truck scales, as they can be assembled and installed in any space for accurate weight measurement. Axle scale is a type of portable truck scale. These scales are used on a temporary basis where there is non-availability of a weighbridge scale or a weighing station.

These are the fundamentals regarding how a truck scale works, the components of the truck scale, as well as the different types of truck scales. Truck scales are the vital element for having high accuracy as well as efficiency in operation. Transportation, logistics, mining, and construction industries highly rely on using these scales for the fulfillment of their daily weighing requirements. However, these scales also help save extra expenditure thus maximizing the profitability of the businesses. They also prevent the chances of heavy penalties due to overloading which leads to no compliance with the laws and regulations. Truck scales are truly the backbone of operations requiring the weighing of truck loads.