Skip to main content
All Posts By

admin@roushcleantech

Customers Enjoy a Day at the Track

By General discussion

Customers Enjoy a Day at the Track

Dealers: Bryson Sales and Service, Bird Bus Sales, Cardinal Bus Sales, Girardin Ontario, Hoover Truck and Bus Centers, Brightbill Body Works and Yancey Bus Sales and ServiceAlt Fuels - Track Day 7.15.19

To show their customers appreciation, dealers from Bryson Sales and Service, Bird Bus Sales, Cardinal Bus Sales, Girardin Ontario, Hoover Truck and Bus Centers, Brightbill Body Works and Yancey Bus Sales and Service treated attendees to a day on the track. Customers representing 23 different school districts attended one of two days of events at the Michigan International Speedway (MIS), complete with a spin around the racetrack in a Roush Stage 3 Mustang. 

“The partnership between us, Blue Bird and ROUSH CleanTech is one for the record books,” said Eric Arnold, Yancey Bus vice president and general manager. “It is through our combined efforts, from manufacture through sales and customer support, that we are able to make propane school bus adoption more prevalent in our state.”

The dealers invited all current propane and gasoline school bus customers to MIS for a customer appreciation day. The morning began with a meet and greet in the Roush Suite where, for the two days, more than 50 people from 23 different school districts attended. Together, these districts operate over 750 propane school buses and about 70 gasoline buses.

After receiving an overview, each day the guests were escorted trackside and given the opportunity ride around the track in a Roush Mustang. Professional drivers were on site to drive guests in official pace cars, too. Following the rides, the group enjoyed lunch and toured the garage.

“The track day appreciation event held by Roush CleanTech was an event that I really enjoyed,” said Buddy Gilliard, director of transportation for Coffee County Schools. “The staff at Roush CleanTech are top notch people and the day at Michigan Speedway driving the Mustang by Roush Performance was an experience that was just awesome!”

The dealers worked with Blue Bird and ROUSH CleanTech to make this day a success. If you have an idea for a customer appreciation event, contact your ROUSH CleanTech alt fuels sales rep.

Volkswagen Update: July 2019

By General discussion

Volkswagen Update: July 2019

Forty-eight states have published final mitigations plans with only Florida, Kentucky, Mississippi and North Dakota left to publish theirs for public consumption. Of those with final plans approved, 27 states have opened and / or closed their first round of RFPs. This includes competitive funding programs (e.g., almost all states) and direct allocations (e.g., Georgia) and represents almost $100 million of opportunity across the country. Much of the funding announced to date includes smaller states with limited funding, so expect Fall 2019 to see considerable increases in both the number and amount of funding programs available.

For those who didn’t see the announcement last month, the Propane Education & Research Council has created a new resource center with in-depth information about propane school buses. It includes a curated state-by-state map with details regarding how to identify and apply for Volkswagen settlement funds.

With the resources provided in PERC’s Volkswagen Trust Resource Center, you can learn more about the benefits of propane autogas, how to accurately evaluate NOx reductions, and how to calculate the total cost savings for propane autogas.

The resource center also includes an interactive map where you can research your state mitigation plan, identify potential funding opportunities and learn how to apply for VW settlement funds. Many states have finalized their mitigation plans and are actively accepting funding applications for new school buses that could be powered by propane.

Because we still have some states with huge funding opportunities available in 2019, we need your help. Remember, the entire objective of the VW Environmental Mitigation Trust fund is to reduce harmful NOx emissions. Let’s work together to create a strategy that meets your state criteria. Our highest applicant success rate has been when we focused on NOx reductions, emissions cost-effectiveness, match funding and project location.

Please contact Chelsea Jenkins at Chelsea.Jenkins@roush.com to discuss how best to approach and plan for the next phase of Volkswagen settlement (and other funding) opportunities in your state.

Visit www.ROUSHcleantech.com/volkswagen-settlement for more information.

Diesel and Gas Taxes on the Rise

By General discussion

Diesel and Gas Taxes on the Rise

One of the key selling points about propane school buses is the fuel itself. Right now, this domestically produced fuel is abundant and at a historically low price, while conventional fuel taxes are on the rise.

Propane autogas is a leading alternative fuel in the United States and the third most commonly used vehicle fuel, following gasoline and diesel. More than 90 percent of the United States propane autogas supply is produced domestically, with an additional 7 percent from Canada. Currently, the U.S. has a 10- to 20-year supply with 100 million barrels of storage.

Conventional fuel prices are going up, due in part to increasing gas and diesel taxes. In the past decade, nearly half of the United States has adopted some sort of new gas tax. And, just this month, 12 states increased diesel tax rates. Some are less than a penny, but others as much as 24 cents per gallon. Many folks will feel the increase immediately. Guess what? Propane is not included in these state tax hikes on transportation fuels.

Read more about fuel taxes to leverage this information to sell more propane buses:

Commercial Carrier Journal
ITEP
LP Gas magazine

And Our Q2 Winners are…

By General discussion

And Our Q2 Winners are…

Randy Hicks of Ross Transportation for securing new propane customers. ($2,500)

And, we have a tie for repeat propane customers:

Wayne Vieira of Cardinal Bus Sales ($1,250)

Sarah Jones of Western Bus Sales ($1,250)

Congratulations to Randy, Wayne and Sarah! Contact your ROUSH CleanTech alt fuels sales rep to claim your prize.

About the Contest

For 2019, we have two new sales incentives that’s all about increasing propane bus sales. For each quarter, the Blue Bird dealer salesperson who books the most new propane customers and the dealer salesperson who brings in the most repeat propane customers will each be awarded $2,500! If there’s a tie among one of the two contests, the prize is split.

These two sales incentives aim to encourage and recognize individuals who are gaining traction in their market along with those individuals who have had tremendous success in their territories.

Contact your ROUSH CleanTech representative to learn more. Good luck selling propane buses.

Domestic Fuels Combat Energy Volatility

By Blog

Part of our independence comes from relying on domestic energy. We continue to beat the drum about the importance of energy security. We’re a country rich in oil, natural gas and propane. Using these domestic energy resources will help to better insulate us from the instability that plagues the globe today.

Read More

Volkswagen Update: June 2019

By General discussion

Volkswagen Update: June 2019

More states have finalized their VW funding plans. Currently, 46 states have published funding opportunities representing $2.3 billion — with $132.7 million of that exclusively allocated for school bus replacement. Unfortunately, most of the current funding is going toward diesel.

We’ve had many successes with the EMT funding school buses fueled by propane autogas, such as in Lafayette, Louisiana and various districts in Nebraska. In Iowa, 100 percent of the applications seeking propane school buses were funded. And in Tennessee, 14 districts won funding to replace diesel school buses with alternatively fueled buses.

But, we still have some states with huge funding opportunities available in 2019 and we need your help. Remember, the entire objective of the VW Environmental Mitigation Trust fund is to reduce NOx emissions. Let’s work together to create a strategy that meets your state criteria. Our highest applicant success rate has been when we focused on NOx reductions, emissions cost-effectiveness, match funding and project location.

As of June 2019:

46 states have final plans:

Alaska, Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

Three states have draft plans:
Kentucky, Mississippi and North Dakota.

Three states are still developing their plans and are accepting comments:
Florida, Puerto Rico and West Virginia.

Propane Specific Preventive Maintenance

By General discussion

Propane Specific Preventive Maintenance

Propane autogas buses do promise less maintenance requirements than diesel. But, that doesn’t eliminate all service needs. We’ve put together the top three preventive maintenance guidelines you should be following to help keep your propane buses running smoothly.

#1. Fuel Filters

Propane autogas fuel systems require much less maintenance than diesel fuel systems and are more comparable to gasoline fuel systems. When operating a ROUSH CleanTech propane autogas fuel system, it’s recommended that operators follow the same maintenance intervals and fluid specifications as called out by the OEM for the gasoline engine.

The only additional maintenance items for our propane autogas fuel systems are fuel filters. One filter is added into the filling line on all generations of our fuel systems. Another one is the supply line filter between the fuel tank and engine on a Generation 4 style fuel system.

Both fuel filters are serviceable without draining the propane from the fuel tank. There are no maintenance items within the fuel tank requiring it to be drained for any type of service.

These two filters are recommended for changing out every 50,000 miles.

If the operator notices a decreased filling rate on a unit as compared to others in the fleet, it could be a sign of a partially clogged filter and should be replaced regardless of the vehicle’s mileage.

#2. Fuel Tank – Corrosion and Refinishing

Propane autogas fuel tanks should be inspected for signs of surface rust or corrosion on an annual basis. If corrosion or surface rust is found, the fuel tank should be refinished to inhibit any further surface rust or corrosion from forming.

We’ve worked with our propane autogas tank suppliers to develop refinishing procedures. We also have a FAQ document which answers many common questions about tank corrosion and tank inspection at https://www.roushcleantech.com/service-manuals/.

#3. Special Tools

ROUSH CleanTech propane autogas fuel systems work with standard OBD II diagnostic equipment and require very minimal tooling. However, we created a list of relatively low-cost special tools that we recommend you have in your shop. That list can be found at https://www.roushcleantech.com/training/.

We also have information on several types of propane transfer systems. These can be used to speed up the repair process when in-tank repairs are necessary and require the propane fuel to be drained from the tanks. There’s the ROUSH CleanTech Transfer System that uses in-tank fuel pumps plus two other manufacturers’ transfer systems we recommend. You can find out more at https://www.roushcleantech.com/training/.

We’ve also developed our own diagnostic software application, known as the ROUSH RDT tool. This tool is available to download for free. It’s like other OEM forms of diagnostic software and requires the use of one of our recommended pass-through devices to communicate between the vehicle and the computer. To download the free ROUSH RDT tool, or for more information about the recommended pass-through devices, visit https://www.roushcleantech.com/rdt/.

 

If you have any questions about preventive maintenance, please contact Mario Genovese at Mario.Genovese@roush.com.

Dealer Spotlight: Student Transportation of America

By General discussion

Dealer Spotlight: Student Transportation of America

Student Transportation of America (STA) has been committed to adopting propane school buses for over seven years. And, they’re still buying, including a recent purchase of 400 Blue Bird Vision propane buses. That’s because STA has a goal to have 25 percent of its fleet run on propane.Dealer Spotlight - STA 6.17.19

“Domestically produced, clean-burning propane autogas is a perfect fit for school bus fleets,” stated Gene Kowalczewski, Chief Operating Officer of STA’s School Transportation Group. “At STA, we convey to school districts that there are economic, safety and environmental benefits of propane-powered school buses and our leading the way with alternative-fueled student transportation is one of the differentiators for us.”

STA is at the forefront of the industry in the use of alternative fuels, including propane autogas technology. Its clean fleet has grown to include over 2,000 vehicles, most of which are Blue Bird Vision Propane school buses. The company has invested millions of dollars in placing alternative-fueled vehicles in California, Oregon, Colorado, Texas, Minnesota, Nebraska, Missouri and Pennsylvania.

Founded in 1997, STA operates close to 16,000 vehicles, providing customers with the highest level of safe and reliable student transportation, management, logistics and technology solutions throughout the U.S. and Canada.

We’d like to thank STA for their continued commitment to reducing its carbon footprint by providing school districts the option of propane-fueled buses.

Propane Races Ahead

By General discussion

Propane Races Ahead

Did you know that propane autogas powers more than school buses? In fact, you may be surprised to find out that it’s used in drag racing, too. For almost 10 years, racers Susan Roush-McClenaghan and Donnie Bowles have used cutting-edge engine technology to win races with propane.Alt Fuel - Susan Drag Racing

And, they win with no sacrifice racing against traditional fuels in an “open fuel” class. They’ve racked up numerous championships — proving that propane doesn’t compromise performance.

“The class we race in is ‘open fuel’ so it’s propane competing against other race fuels or traditional fuels with no handicapping of the fuel,” said Roush-McClenaghan. “It’s just fuel to fuel.”

Roush-McClenaghan and Bowles both drive Ford Mustangs with Coyote engines at a staggering 890 horsepower with two fuel injectors per cylinder and a supercharger.  Propane has such a high octane rating that there’s only a four-horsepower difference between propane and C14 (race fuel). The racers can reach 150 mph in just 9.19 seconds!

Even though a school bus won’t reach those rates, they do share many of the same attributes as their motorsport counterparts. Both the racecar and the Blue Bird Vision propane engines use liquid propane injection with a base Ford engine and, in some cases, share the exact same components.

Roush-McClenaghan supports the use of propane because it is clean and domestically produced. And she and Bowles have multiple wins to back it up. In just nine years of racing they have brought in eight championships, with four each. Currently, Susan is in first place for this season!

Interested to see more? Come to a race!