Understanding Semi-Truck Fuel Efficiency

With diesel prices rising, fuel efficiency is becoming more of a priority than ever, especially in the trucking industry. Commercial motor vehicles are not the most fuel-efficient rigs on the market. The average semi-truck gets about 6.5 miles per gallon (MPG), while a typical automobile receives about 25 MPG. However, minor changes can result in significant fuel savings over time, considering how many miles a long-haul trucker travels, which is often more than 100,000 per year. Read on to learn about semi-truck fuel efficiency and how you can improve yours.

What is Fuel Efficiency?

Fuel efficiency, measured in miles per gallon, describes how far a vehicle can travel with a certain amount of fuel. Motor vehicles with better fuel economy consume less fuel to drive the same distance as vehicles with poor fuel economy, reducing wasted fuel. Driving a fuel-efficient rig saves you money, reduces your carbon footprint, and lowers your vehicle’s dependence on oil. 

Tips For Improving Semi-Truck Fuel Efficiency

Truck drivers can take full advantage of a haul by being aware of their fuel mileage. Knowing how many MPG your semi-truck gets will minimize costs and improve travel and delivery time.


Follow these five tips to increase fuel efficiency in your semi-truck:

  1. Regulate Your Speed

Maintaining a consistent speed and avoiding major accelerations or decelerations will result in consistent fuel usage. For every mile per hour (MPH) increase above 55 MPH, semi-truck fuel efficiency reduces by 0.1 MPG. Additionally, accelerating from 0 to 65 MPH can use up to half a gallon of fuel. Keeping your speed consistent will help you avoid these two problems. Driving under 65 MPH will also improve your safety and that of other drivers on the road. 

  1. Use Cruise Control

Taking advantage of cruise control is another way to regulate your speed. Cruise control keeps your vehicle at a steady pace, saving you up to 6% in fuel consumption throughout your route. It is important to note that drivers should only use this function when road conditions are safe.

  1. Stay in a High Gear

Staying in one gear for as long as possible will also help improve your vehicle’s fuel efficiency. Aim to stay in top gear at least 85% of the time while on the highway. Additionally, make as few gear shifts as possible and maintain a revolutions per minute (RPM) range of 1250 to 1350.

  1. Reduce Idle Time

Avoiding idling when possible will help reduce wasted fuel as well. Every hour of idle time can burn a gallon of diesel and decrease your semi-truck fuel efficiency by 1%. It is best practice to shut the engine off if you plan to park for more than five minutes. Many companies have auxiliary power units (APUs) in their vehicles that allow you to maintain a comfortable temperature without idling. 

  1. Check Tire Pressure

Regularly checking your tire pressure is another good practice for not only improving your fuel efficiency, but also improving the safety of your vehicle and the lifespan of your tires. For a 10 pounds per square inch (PSI) drop in tire pressure, your vehicle’s mileage reduces by 1%. Under-inflated tires also generate more heat, causing them to weaken and eventually break. Make tire pressure checks part of your pre-trip inspection routine, and keep a gauge in your vehicle to check pressure while on the road.

Get Started With a Truck Driving Career Today

The demand for truck drivers is growing. There is no better time to join the industry than now, and Phoenix Truck Driving School can help you get started. Our commercial driver’s license (CDL) program in Albuquerque combines classroom, range, and on-the-road training from experienced instructors to help our students graduate in as little as four weeks.

Contact us to start earning your CDL today.


Benefits Of Customizing Your Semi-Truck

Your semi-truck is your home away from home when you’re a truck driver, so you want it to be as safe and comfortable as possible. One of the advantages of being an owner-operator is having the freedom to set up your rig however you like. Even if you are a company driver, there are ways you can personalize your vehicle without making permanent changes. Customizing your semi-truck can be very beneficial, and we will discuss a few of the benefits in the blog below.


Five benefits of customizing your semi-truck include:

1. Feeling Comfortable in Your Rig

You will spend a lot of time in your vehicle as a trucker, especially if you are an over-the-road (OTR) driver. Truck customization can help you fight homesickness and make the long routes more comfortable. Bring along mementos like pictures of family members, friends, and events you cherish to remind yourself of home and motivate yourself while you’re on the road. Making cosmetic changes to your vehicle’s interior will also boost your comfort level. Consider replacing high-contact points, such as the steering wheel or shifter knob, with more ergonomic designs.

2. Improving Safety

Customizing your semi-truck can not only improve your comfort level, but it can also improve your safety. Changes like installing a light bar, custom LED lights, or a new navigation system make driving at night or in a new area a breeze. Another safety improvement you can make is tinting your windows. Tinted windows reduce sun glare and keep the interior of your vehicle cool during the hot summer months, all while upgrading your look.

3. Expressing Your Style

Another benefit of personalizing your rig is expressing your unique style. A new paint job or decals is one of the most popular ways to customize your semi-truck. When you turn your rig into a canvas, you will catch people’s eyes on and off the highway. Keep it simple with stripe detailing, or go all out with a custom paint job. Additionally, an added advantage of customization is that certain additions, such as a grille cover and chrome accents, can protect the exterior of your vehicle while also fitting your new paint style.

4. Encouraging a Healthy Lifestyle

Life on the road doesn’t have to be unhealthy. Installing interior electronics can make all the difference in staying healthy during long hauls. Customizing your cab with small kitchen appliances like a fridge or freezer, slow cooker, electric skillet, and two-burner stove allows you to enjoy home cooking while driving. These appliances can also decrease your stopping time, which in turn will improve your efficiency.

5. Getting Better Sleep

Healthy eating isn’t the only aspect of a healthy lifestyle. Getting enough sleep each night is also crucial to your well-being and safety while driving OTR. Upgrading your semi-truck with a personalized sleeping area can improve your sleep quality. Include items like a mattress pad, comfortable sheets and bedding, and a supportive pillow to help ensure you get high-quality sleep during long hauls. 

Your Road to A Professional Truck Driving Career

On the road to becoming a professional truck driver, the first stop is earning your commercial driver’s license, and attending a high-quality truck driving school will help you do so. At Phoenix Truck Driving School, we make obtaining your CDL manageable. Our programs have flexible schedules to accommodate every lifestyle, and we also offer an accelerated program that can get you on the road in as little as four weeks.

Contact one of our advisors today to start earning your CDL.

Understanding Semi-Truck Tire Maintenance

Maintaining semi-truck tires is an essential part of a commercial truck driver’s job. Not only does it ensure your safety, but it also boosts fuel economy and improves the lifespan of your vehicle. A little maintenance goes a long way and can save you from tire failure while on your route. 


Follow these five tips for semi-truck tire maintenance:

1. Perform Thorough Pre-Trip Inspections

Pre-trip inspections are one of a trucker’s best tools for preventing problems before they occur, including tire failure. This inspection is a thorough check of your truck, trailer, and load to ensure everything is in the correct working order before departure. In addition to pre-trip inspections, you should look over your rig at least once a day while on the road. Taking a few extra minutes before and during every trip to inspect your vehicle thoroughly could save you hours of downtime due to a flat tire or worse.

2. Rotate Tires & Align Wheels Regularly

Checking tire tread and wheel alignment should be part of your commercial truck maintenance routine. Poor alignment and uneven tire tread are two huge factors in premature tire wear, so it is crucial to regularly check these two aspects of your vehicle. As a general rule, rotate your tires every 6,000-8,000 miles to distribute tread evenly, and perform a wheel alignment every 80,000-100,000 miles, or whenever you feel the steering wheel pull to one side or the other when you’re driving. 

3. Maintain a Consistent Tire Pressure

Maintaining consistent air pressure will also expand the lifespan of your tires. Overinflated tires wear excessively on the center tire treads, while an underinflated tire will wear the outside treads, both of which can lead to internal structural damage. Make sure to check your tire pressure before you hit the road, especially if you are driving in below-freezing conditions. 

4. Keep Tires and Wheels Clean

Washing your tires and wheels is another best practice to add to your maintenance checklist. Not only does it make your rig look nice, but it is also good for the health of the tires and wheels themselves. Make it a habit to wash away road salt, grease, and grime once you return home from each route. 

5. Practice Safe Driving Habits

Lastly, one of the major contributors to poor tire performance is how a trucker drives. Forming and practicing safe driving habits will help you avoid flats and blowouts over time. A few tips for safe driving are maintaining a consistent speed on the road, avoiding potholes, braking slowly, avoiding accelerating too quickly, and using caution when driving around curbs.

Learn Safe Driving Habits in Albuquerque

At Phoenix Truck Driving School in Albuquerque, our experienced instructors teach our students the skills necessary to succeed in the trucking industry. This includes pertinent safety information and key maintenance topics, such as how to perform pre-trip inspections and care for commercial truck tires properly.

To learn how we can help you earn your commercial driver’s license (CDL) in as little as four weeks, contact us today.


A Guide To Trucking In The Winter

As a truck driver, you’ll drive through many parts of the country in a variety of conditions. This includes spending time on the road during the winter months. Driving conditions can be challenging during this time, so it’s important to be prepared.

Here are some times for trucking in the winter:

1. Slow Down

It can be tempting to try to speed up to get to your destination faster and cover more miles. However, it’s not worth compromising your safety. When roads are icy, going slowly is essential to ensure you can maintain control of your vehicle. It’s better to go “too slow” and have others pass you than to drive recklessly and cause an accident.

2. Leave Plenty Of Space

Maintaining a safe following distance is important during any season. With icy roads in winter, it’s even more essential. Make sure you have ample room to come to a stop safely if you need to do so. When possible, having space beside your truck is also helpful, although this may be harder to maintain depending on traffic conditions.

3. Keep Supplies In Your Vehicle

You should have chains, a bag of sand or cat litter, extra food and water, and warm clothing in your truck, in addition to your usual supplies.

4. Watch The Weather

Keep an eye on weather forecasts, and be prepared to wait it out if the road condition is dangerous. Use your best judgment. If there’s any doubt whether driving is safe, stay parked. Although it’s stressful to be delayed, it’s not worth risking your life and putting others at risk. If possible, account for possible delays in your trip plan if you anticipate snow storms, and always communicate clearly and promptly with your dispatcher if you do need to stop.

5. Keep Your Truck Visible

Visibility can quickly become an issue during heavy snow. Doing what you can to keep your truck visible helps keep you safe. Make sure snow doesn’t cover your license plate and tail lights, and make sure all of your lights are working properly.

6. Practice Defensive Driving

This tip isn’t winter-specific, but it’s important to keep in mind year-round and can help you manage conditions during any season. Defensive driving means anticipating what others on the road may do and adjusting your driving behavior to prevent accidents. It requires constant awareness of what’s going on around you. Staying focused on driving allows you to see potential hazards in time to react.

Learn Safe Driving Skills

At Phoenix Truck Driving School, we help our students prepare for a rewarding career in the trucking industry. This includes teaching you how to drive safely in all seasons. With our accelerated program, you can earn your commercial driver’s license (CDL) in as little as four weeks.

To learn more about our CDL school, contact us today.

Weigh Station 101

To keep themselves and others safe on the road, commercial truck drivers must follow all state and federal regulations, including truck weight limits. Most commercial vehicles need to stop at weigh stations, known to truckers as “chicken coops,” to ensure compliance. If you’re a rookie truck driver ready to encounter your first chicken coop, this blog outlines the basics of weigh stations. 

The Purpose of Weigh Stations

Most states require all trucks and commercial vehicles with a gross weight of over 10,000 pounds to stop at every open weigh station located along their route. The purpose of these stations is safety. Heavy semi-trucks are harder to control and more dangerous on the roads, both for the trucker and other drivers around them. Safety is especially a concern in the winter when road conditions are less than favorable. Weight stations also help prevent damage to roadways due to overweight trucks. 

Weigh Station Process

Once you are familiar with the process, navigating weigh stations will easily become part of your routine as a trucker. The process can be broken up into three main phases: approaching the weight station, weighing your rig, and inspecting the vehicle.

Phase One: Entering the Weigh Station

As you drive along the highway on your route, you will see roadside signs indicating that a weigh station is approaching. If the station is closed, you do not have to stop but if the station is open, you are required to exit. After pulling off the highway, follow the posted weigh station signs or instructions from officials that lead you to the scale. 

Phase Two: Weighing the Truck

As you drive toward the scale, follow the posted speed limit and instructional signs. Some scales require you to bring your vehicle to a complete stop, while others can function if your truck is moving slowly. Once on the scale, it will check your total weight and how much weight is on each axle. 

Phase Three: Inspecting the Truck

After you weigh your vehicle, your Department of Transportation (DOT) number is entered into a computer system to ensure your log is accurate. Your safety rating, equipment, and log book will also be verified. If you pass over the scale at the correct speed with an underweight load and pass the inspection, you will be sent to the bypass lane and can continue your route.

What Happens If Your Truck is Overweight?

If the scale indicates that your truck is overweight, you must pull over to the side until a solution is determined. Federally, this is over 80,000 pounds, although some states have lower gross limits. Your motor carrier can either purchase an overweight permit or send a relief driver to take the excess weight. You will not be allowed back on the road until the issue is resolved. An overweight assessment comes with a citation, fine, and points against your Compliance, Safety, and Accountability (CSA) score. 

How to Avoid an Overweight Citation

The best way to ensure that your semi-truck is within the weight limit is to be prepared. Completing a thorough pre-trip inspection before you head out on each route is the best way to do so. You should also weigh your truck after loading. Many truck stops have scales, and if weight is an issue, you can adjust your axles or go back to the shipper to avoid an overweight citation at a weigh station.

Start Your Commercial Trucking Career Today

The demand for truck drivers is growing. If you are interested in starting your career in commercial truck driving, let our experienced instructors at Phoenix Truck Driving School teach you everything you need to know. When you earn your commercial driver’s license at our Albuquerque location, we can get you on the road in as little as four weeks

To learn more about our available CDL programs, contact us today.


The Importance Of Defensive Driving For Truckers

Truckers spend a significant amount of time on the road, and it’s important that they focus on safety. This protects the drivers themselves, as well as their freight and others on the road. Defensive driving is a key skill that helps truckers stay safe and prevent accidents.

What Is Defensive Driving?

Defensive driving is the practice of anticipating potential hazards before they become dangerous and taking steps to prevent accidents through safe driving. Multiple behaviors fall under the umbrella of defensive driving.

Some of these include:

  • Focusing on the road and avoiding both physical and mental distractions
  • Never driving under the influence
  • Scanning the road as a whole for potential hazards rather than looking only at the car in front of you
  • Maintaining a safe speed
  • Maintaining a safe following distance
  • Staying calm and managing your mental state to avoid road rage

Benefits Of Driving Defensively

First and foremost, the major benefit of being a defensive driver is that you are keeping yourself and others safe. This method of driving helps prevent accidents, which should be a top goal for you as a trucker. You have a responsibility to yourself, your company, and everyone you share the road with to be a responsible and safe driver.

Beyond this, driving defensively can also help you be more efficient and travel more miles so you can increase your pay. By minimizing the risk of accidents, you can spend more time on the road instead of dealing with issues.

Defensive driving also helps you avoid fines for traffic violations, and improves your reputation with your motor carrier.

How To Be A Defensive Driver

Defensive driving is more than just a list of behaviors. It’s a mindset that you need to practice so that safety is a consistent focus when you’re behind the wheel.

Here are some tips you can use to improve your defensive driving skills:

1. Ask “What If…?”

As you’re driving, ask yourself “what if” questions to help imagine what could happen on the road. For example, if there’s a car nearby, ask what would happen if they suddenly changed lanes in front of you. Would you have to swerve to avoid them? If so, you may be able to adjust your position so you have more space. There are many different questions you could ask to help you identify hazards that could occur suddenly and prepare in advance.

2. Find Ways To Stay Focused

Focus is a big part of defensive driving. It’s also often a challenge when you spend much of your day behind the wheel. Simply understanding the importance of paying close attention to the road may not be enough to make this a habit. Instead, identify practical strategies that help you stay alert. For example, you may notice that certain types of music keep your focus on the road.

3. Evaluate Your Driving

Self-evaluation is a key skill for truck drivers. After every trip, think about what you did well in terms of safety and identify any issues or close calls you had. Determine what you can do better next time you hit the road, and commit to continuing to grow over time.

Learn To Be A Safe Trucker

At Phoenix Truck Driving School in Albuquerque, we understand the importance of safety and teach our students valuable defensive driving skills. Our program can help you earn your commercial driver’s license (CDL) in as little as four weeks.

To learn more about getting your CDL in Albuquerque, contact us today.

A Trucker’s Guide To Food On The Road

The trucking lifestyle comes with some unique considerations, including the question of where to get food each day. Food is likely going to be one of the most significant parts of your budget on the road and also plays a large role in your health. It’s worth putting the time and effort into making a plan for what to eat on the road and how to prepare your meals so you can save money and stay fit more easily.

What to Consider When Planning Meals as a Trucker

There are three major considerations you’ll need to keep in mind when planning where to eat while trucking:


Truckers are often on a tight schedule and don’t have access to the same appliances and tools someone could use to cook at home. As a result, it’s often important to find meals that are fast and convenient.


Sitting in one place for most of the day, as most truckers do, can take a toll on your health. Eating nutrient-dense meals and being mindful of calorie consumption can help you stay fit even if you aren’t moving around as much. Eating well can also improve your energy levels and help you feel better overall.


Budgeting is an important consideration for individuals across many professions. In trucking, food is likely to be a significant expense. Planning ahead and setting a budget can help you manage how much you spend on eating on the road.

Where Can Truckers Eat On the Road?

There are a few different options for where truckers can purchase their meals.


The quickest option for getting food on the road is to stop at a restaurant. There are often multiple options near truck stops or that otherwise have accessible semi-truck parking. Although it’s possible to find healthier options, many restaurants have mostly high-calorie, lower-nutrient options. The expense of eating out multiple times a day can also add up quickly.

Truck Stops

In addition to the restaurants at or near truck stops, you can often find a combination of grab-and-go meals and common ingredients. Many truck stops are starting to offer healthier options and it’s convenient to stop at one location for your food, fuel, and other amenities. However, the food at truck stops may be more costly than you could find at grocery stores, and not all locations offer healthy items.

Grocery Stores

Stopping at a grocery store allows you to get healthier ingredients and is often more budget-friendly. However, you will need to be able to prep and store food on your truck. There are many options for this including slow cookers, microwaves, and hot plates for cooking and a cooler or mini-fridge for storage. You’ll need to find a grocery store that offers semi-truck parking if you choose this option.

Meal Prepping At Home

Making meals at home before starting a haul allows you the ability to make healthy choices that are quick to heat up on the road while also staying on budget. Of course, this does take some time to plan and you’ll need to have enough storage space. Depending on how long you spend on the road, you may need to stop at the other locations on this list for additional meals or ingredients once you run out.

Earn Your CDL in Albuquerque

If you’re interested in becoming a trucker, Phoenix Truck Driving School in Albuquerque can help you get started. You can complete our commercial driver’s license (CDL) training program in as little as four weeks.

To learn more about becoming a trucker, contact us today.

Preventing Trucker Back Pain

Trucking has the potential to be a rewarding career, but it’s also important to consider possible downsides and ways to minimize their effects. One such downside is trucker back pain. While not all drivers experience this pain, some will due to the effects of spending long periods of time sitting down behind the wheel. Luckily, there are methods you can use to reduce the likelihood of suffering from back pain as a truck driver.

Here are some tips:

1. Move Around Regularly

When possible, stop for a few minutes and get out of your semi-truck to walk around or stretch. This helps break up the periods of time you’ll spend sitting down and can prevent back pain and other issues. You don’t need to devote a great deal of time to this. Even a few five-minute breaks spread throughout the day can make a difference. (Of course, you’ll also need to account for your required breaks for hours of service compliance.)

2. Stretch Before You Start Driving

In addition to moving around during the day, try doing some simple stretches each morning (or night, depending on your schedule) before you hit the road. One good option is to twist your torso to the left while seated, then use your right hand to grab the left side of your seat. Hold this stretch for ten seconds, then repeat on the other side.

3. Adjust Your Seat and Posture

If your seat is too far back from the steering wheel or too far forward, it can affect your posture. You don’t want to be hunched over all day. Make sure that when you sit naturally, you are able to comfortably reach the wheel. You should be able to rest your head, neck, and back fully against your seat as you drive.

4. Add Lumbar Support

Adding extra support to your driver’s seat can help you prevent back pain. There are multiple products on the market that can help with this and it can make a significant difference, especially if other methods haven’t helped.

5. Talk To Your Doctor

If you’ve tried multiple methods to minimize back pain and are still having issues, it’s worth having a conversation with your doctor. They may have suggestions that can help you resolve the issue. This may include lifestyle changes, certain supplements, or other recommendations. Make sure to be careful about any medication and ensure it does not interfere with your ability to drive safely. In most cases, your doctor will try other options first.

Start Your Trucking Career

Although there are some things to consider when becoming a trucker, it is still a potentially rewarding career that can allow you to see the country while getting paid competitively. If you’re interested in getting started, Phoenix Truck Driving School can help you earn your commercial driver’s license (CDL) in as little as four weeks.

Contact us today to learn more about our CDL training in Albuquerque.

Best Types of Freight for New Drivers

When you start a new career as diverse and complex as trucking, you will likely have many questions, such as which type of freight you should haul. The main freight classifications are dry van, refrigerated, flatbed, liquid tanker, dry bulk tanker, and doubles/triples, and some are more new driver-friendly than others.

Below are some of the best types of freight for those just starting in the trucking industry: 

Dry Van

General freight trucking, also known as dry vans or box trailers, is the most common type of cargo transportation in the United States, making it an ideal choice for a first-time driver. Box trailers are enclosed vehicles that haul inventory like clothing, non-perishable food, and household goods for some of the largest corporations in the US. 


The learning curve with dry van jobs is less demanding than with other freight because you don’t have to worry about securing your load, and loading and unloading require little or no physical effort from the driver. Hauling freight for a dry van company is also ideal for new drivers because these trucking companies tend to offer more home time. 

Refrigerated Freight

Many rookies also begin hauling refrigerated freight because it is very similar to dry van cargo, the only major difference being that the goods are temperature controlled. These semi-trucks keep items like fruit, frozen goods, and pharmaceuticals insulated despite the weather.


 Like general freight trucking, refrigerated freight requires minimal physical effort, allowing you to focus on your basic driving skills. It also doesn’t require any specialized training. Another perk of refrigerated carriers is that they typically haul food products, which makes for a relatively consistent schedule throughout the year. 

Flatbed Freight

Flatbed freight is another great option for new truck drivers. These trailers transport large, bulky items like construction materials. While it is slightly more physically demanding than a dry van or refrigerated truck, a flatbed can be a beneficial option for new truckers with families. Many flatbed companies typically can get drivers home more often because shippers and receivers for this type of freight are often only open on weekdays. Many truckers also enjoy the physical and intellectual challenges, as well as the variety of interesting products they haul and the places flatbed freight takes them.

Dry Bulk Tanker

Dry bulk tankers, or pneumatic tankers, are less common than other types of freight but still worth looking into for rookie drivers. These trucking trailers haul dry goods like sand, flour, and sugar, so drivers don’t have to worry about their freight sloshing around as they drive. Drivers need some extra safety training to operate a pneumatic tanker, but the ease of transportation, loading, and unloading typically makes it worth it. Many dry bulk companies also offer generous home time. 

Looking to Start Your Truck Driving Career?

Phoenix Truck Driving School can provide you with the proper training to earn your commercial driver’s license (CDL) and start a new career on the road. Our Albuquerque location offers a combination of classroom, range, and on-the-road training, and we can have you driving in as little as four weeks.

Contact one of our advisors today, and they will guide you through the process of earning your CDL and becoming a professional truck driver.

Daytime vs Nighttime Trucking

Trucking is an essential part of our nation’s economy, and you’ll see semi-trucks on highways transporting freight at all hours of the day and night. Some types of trucking allow drivers to choose their own daily schedule, provided they can deliver their haul on time and follow all hours of service (HOS) regulations. Others may require more nighttime trucking based on the delivery windows. If you’re interested in becoming a trucker, it’s important to understand when night driving may be required and how to do this safely. It’s also helpful to understand your own preferences for daytime vs nighttime trucking so you can select a type of trucking that best matches your ideal schedule.

When Is Day vs Night Trucking More Common?

For over-the-road (OTR) dry van hauls, solo truckers generally get to choose their own driving schedule. You’ll still need to adhere to HOS rules and will have a delivery window or a specific delivery time you’ll need to arrive by. This type of driving is most flexible for whether you drive during the day or at night.

In trucking teams, drivers switch off to maximize miles while keeping both individuals within HOS limits. This means that one driver is usually behind the wheel during the day, whereas the other will spend more time driving at night. This may alternate depending on when hours are used up, or you may set a schedule so one of you is always driving at night or always driving during the day.

Due to their delivery requirements, refrigerated truckers (reefers) typically drive at night more often. The same is true for less-than-truckload (LTL) linehaul drivers, who transport freight between LTL terminals.

Local drivers who stay within a limited region most often travel during the day. However, there may be some local jobs that require nighttime driving.

Daytime Trucking


  • This type of driving is more familiar to most people.
  • It’s easier to stay safe and alert.
  • You are working with your circadian rhythm, not against it, which makes getting quality sleep easier.
  • You can enjoy the scenery while you drive.
  • It’s easier to find parking for rest stops during your driving window (e.g. stopping for fuel or your required 30-minute break).


  • There’s more traffic on the road, which can slow down your trip. This is especially significant if you are traveling near a city during rush hour.
  • Construction zones are more likely to be active.
  • Since many truckers prefer to drive during the day and stop to rest at night, truck stops can be crowded and finding parking for the night can be difficult. You may need to shut down earlier in the day and get up earlier in the morning to beat the crowds.

Nighttime Trucking


  • There are fewer vehicles on the road, so traffic is less of a concern.
  • Construction is not typically active at night.
  • In some cases, it’s easier to find parking if you’re sleeping during the day.


  • Drowsiness is more common and can be a safety issue.
  • It’s harder to sleep during the day, especially at truck stops when more people may be moving around and making noise.
  • It’s easier to get lost since landmarks or signs may be hard to see.
  • Low visibility can increase the risk of getting into an accident.

The Bottom Line

At the end of the day, nighttime trucking is often riskier than daytime driving, but this may vary based on your personal experience and preferences. It’s up to you as a driver to be sure that you stay safe on the road. Choosing a career that includes more of the type of driving you prefer can help you reach your goals and feel more comfortable. At Phoenix Truck Driving School, we can help you earn your commercial driver’s license (CDL) and our job placement assistance team can work with you to explore your career options.

Contact us today to learn more about our truck driver training program in Albuquerque.

A Guide to Truck Stop Amenities

Every trucker needs a break from long hours on the road, and truck stops are designed to do just that. These rest areas allow drivers to sleep, refuel and service their vehicles, and take care of their personal hygiene all in one place. When you plan your breaks, choose truck stops with amenities that fit your needs.

The following are six of the top truck stop amenities:

1. Showers

A clean, hot shower is one of the most sought-after amenities on the road. Luckily, most truck stops offer showers to truck drivers. Each location varies slightly on the requirements for drivers to utilize this amenity. Some are coin-operated, while you must purchase a ticket from others to reserve a shower for a particular time.

2. Laundry Facility

A laundromat is another covered amenity for truckers and road trippers alike. If you are on the road for an extended period, you’ll likely run out of clean clothes. Some truck stops provide quality machines, folding tables, and drying racks to clean your clothes, linens, and towels. Not all truck stops offer laundry services, however, so be sure to plan to hit a rest area with this amenity when you need it. 

3. Fuel Station

Every truck stop offers a fuel station as part of its amenities. Filling up your fuel tank whenever possible will ensure you never run out of fuel and helps maintain your vehicle’s fuel economy. The better your fuel economy, the less often you will have to stop and get fuel. Many truck stops also advertise high fuel quality, which reduces engine damage.

4. Parking Spaces

Truck stops are built to accommodate semi-trucks and supply spacious places to park. Depending on the size of the parking lot, some rest areas designate spaces for overnight parking to allow truckers to sleep. It is a safe place to rest and recharge to finish their route. 

5. Service Station

If you experience mechanical problems on the road, truck stops are one of the most convenient locations to stop and examine the vehicle. These locations offer a truck service station that provides preventative and light mechanical services at a lower price than repair shops. They are equipped with the tools and mechanics to get your semi-truck driving again. Many truck stops also have 24/7 roadside assistance.

6. Driver Lounge

Truck stops with a driver lounge area can be a trucker’s home away from home. While each location varies slightly, most driver lounges include comfortable furniture, a TV with cable or satellite hookup, and free WiFi. These features allow drivers to take a break, catch up on the latest news, or watch a few minutes of a game before hitting the road again.

Truck Driver Training in Albuquerque

Before you can hit the open road and enjoy all the amenities truck stops offer, you first need to earn your commercial driver’s license (CDL). At Phoenix Truck Driving School, we offer a combination of classroom, range, and on-the-road training to get you driving in as little as four weeks. Our Albuquerque location is the only truck driving school in the area that has a trucking company at the facility. 

Contact one of our advisors today to find out how soon you can start earning your CDL.

Is There an Age Limit for Trucking?

Truck driving has the potential to be a very rewarding career path, and it interests people of all ages. This leads many to wonder whether or not there is an age limit for trucking. There is a minimum age to earn your commercial driver’s license (CDL), but there is no official maximum age. There are medical requirements to meet to get and keep your license, but many individuals can still thrive as truckers even as they age.

Here is some more information about age restrictions in trucking:

Minimum Age to Earn a CDL

To drive a commercial vehicle within a single state, you need to be at least 18 years old. To drive across state lines, you need to be 21 or older. These age requirements are set on a federal level and apply in any state you earn your license in.

If you’re interested in a trucking career but aren’t old enough to get an interstate CDL, you can explore other opportunities within your state. However, you should be aware that local jobs are often more competitive and involve challenging driving conditions, such as city driving and frequent backing.

There has been some interest in lowering the age requirement for interstate trucking. However, there has not been much momentum for these changes, so they will continue to apply for the foreseeable future.

How Old Is Too Old to Be a Trucker?

There is no maximum age for trucking. Many people enter this industry later than is often the case for other careers. Some truckers choose to pursue driving after their children have moved out and they have more flexibility to stay on the road for longer and see the country. Others earn their CDL after a career change later in life. Whatever the case, age doesn’t have to limit your ability to become a trucker.

Truckers are required to undergo a Department of Transportation (DOT) medical exam to ensure they are physically able to perform the necessary job duties. Whether or not you can pass this physical exam doesn’t necessarily depend on your age. Many younger individuals can have medical conditions that prevent them from trucking, and many older truckers have clean bills of health. Nevertheless, it’s important to be aware of.

What to Expect From the DOT Physical

The DOT physical involves a full examination of your health. Your doctor will ask questions about your medical history and conduct a complete physical exam. They will also complete urinalysis to check for various medical conditions. Most drivers complete these physicals every two years to ensure they can perform their job duties. If you have a medical condition, your doctor may require you to return annually instead.

Earn Your CDL

Phoenix Truck Driving School in Albuquerque can help you earn your commercial license and become a trucker. We’ve trained students in a wide range of age groups to give them the skills needed to succeed on the road.

Take the first steps to a new trucking career and contact us today.