When you talk about seats with people who operate equipment or vehicles, whether it’s a truck, tractor, construction equipment or a lawn mower, they always will tell you that it’s all about comfort and durability. Yet, as many as three-fourths of all professional truck drivers in the country suffer from lower back pain, claims Dr. Eric Wood, occupational medicine director at the University of Utah.
Today, an air seat is not a luxury, it is a necessity. The incorrect kind of vehicle seat can be more harmful than good. Putting in a low-cost alternative to the newer seat with multi-faceted designs and comfort options, can end up costing you more. Not only may an inexpensive, ill-fitting seat give you back pain, it will not last very long. Now, more than ever, it is easy to find a seat that can be custom fit to your needs and be built to last. Today’s technology and manufacturing capabilities is making that possible. Read our list of benefits you will receive from purchasing an air seat for your truck and why it is a necessity for your health.
- Shock and Vibration Protection. The new air seats are designed to provide protection from shock and vibration that allows drivers to operate over full workdays and weeks without negative effects to their health. The new and improved air suspension seating today provides drivers with a smooth, vibration-free environment by focusing advancements in technology and durability.
- Minimized Vibrations. Air suspension seating also provides up-and-down and lateral dampening of motion and vibration. Air pressure can be adjusted infinitely and continuously to take into account the varying size and weights of the operators. Shock absorber tuning can also minimize vibration and the effects of rough road terrain by maintaining a constant force over the full length of travel.
- Smoother Operations. The technology improvements have been made in the area of greater load capacity, more comfortable, ergonomic cushions and smoother operating functions. Load capacities have been increased in many seats up to well over 300 pounds. Isolation systems have been improved for smoother operation and shock absorber strokes have been increased. Suspensions are being improved so that there is more even distribution of forces across in the system framework. Suspension rollers have been improved so that there is less friction.
- Durability and Stability. Durability has been improved by the fact that many of the new seats have fewer moving parts, better aligned parts, reduced free play and a more secure airline system. In addition, the suspension structures have been strengthened to provide more stability.
- Increased Price. As always, improvements in the technology drive up the costs. It’s always been a tough call to know how much a buyer will pay for the new developments in durability, comfort and safety. Some industry observers estimate that the new state-of-the-art technology could add as much as 70 percent to the cost of a seat. An owner-operator may well feel that it’s worth it for one truck. However, in today’s tight market, fleet owners might see the price as intimidating as they think about the bottom line for hundreds of trucks.
ISRI and National Seating are two companies that have developed ergonomically designed cushions for improved comfort and enhanced styling. National has a unique lumbar support system called the Back Cycler which cyclically inflates and deflates to provide variable pressure on the lower back. This reduces the strain and pain caused when seated in one position for an extended period of time. Coupled with triple lumbar, air bolsters in the back and cushion, thigh extension, front and rear cushion tilt, dual level heat, adjustable shock and easy to reach 180-degree swivel, it really does put you in command of your own comfort.
ISRI’s new generation of customized seats can make driving a more enjoyable experience. Their new premium series seat has automatic height adjustment, adjustable shock absorber, two-chamber lumbar support, leather trim, seat frame tilt adjustment, quick air release, shoulder adjustment, and a heating system. Other options include a relaxer or climate control. Click here for tips on how to purchase the best seat for you and your truck and to receive a special Team Run Smart discount at K&G Manufacturing.
No matter how you look at it, as an owner operator, the quality and durability, and the comfort of the seat is important. You may pay more up front for a better seat, but the payoff will justify the cost. It’s an investment in your health and well-being. Good ergonomics and a good fit will mean a more enjoyable day behind the wheel. If you are in it for the long haul, a comfortable seat will be much appreciated.