June 22, 2018

Precedent® MultiTemp Delivers Double-Digit Fuel Savings for Cheney Brothers


When Cheney Brothers first saw Thermo King’s new Precedent® S-600M MultiTemp refrigeration unit, there were two things that got their attention with the new technology:  the fuel savings and the reduced noise levels. Headquartered in Florida, Cheney is one of the fastest growing and highly respected food service distributors in the southeast. Their keys to success lie in operational efficiencies and customer satisfaction.

“And that’s exactly why we were so excited about the Precedent MultiTemp unit,” said Cecil King, vice president of operations at Cheney Brothers. “The improved fuel economy was the first feature that got my attention. The units will pay for themselves quickly in fuel savings alone. The second feature was the noise level of the new units … they are so quiet! Until I heard them for myself, it was hard to believe a unit could be quieter than the current Thermo King SB SPECTRUM™ Whisper units in our fleet. The claim proved correct and our customers will truly appreciate this enhanced feature, especially during our early morning runs to hotels or in residential areas.”

Cheney Brothers first cast eyes on the Precedent MultiTemp one year ago when it was previewed at the 2012 International Food Distribution Association (IFDA) show in Las Vegas. The company made plans to acquire two of the new units as soon as they were available in 2013 to begin field tests. The company has been running those two units since early August on Great Dane trailers and has logged more than 1,000 hours. Fuel levels have been closely monitored with the help of Rob Schack, branch/service manager at Cheney’s home dealership, Thermo King of Palm Beach.

“We initially ran those units 24/7 for more than one month on local routes hauling everything from lobster, steak, and chicken to fresh produce and dairy,” said Manny Martin, fleet manager for Cheney Brothers. “We utilized all three compartments – frozen, cool and dry, and monitored the fuel the entire time. With Cycle Sentry on, initial calculations indicate significant double-digit fuel savings over our SB SPECTRUM unit fleet. We are very pleased and excited about the data that continues to come in.”

“I also have to say the units are beautiful. They really stick out among all the units in the yard,” continued Martin.

The test units are part of a two-year field trial that will include local routes and longer routes to continue gauging mileage and verifying ROI of units.

The company also ordered two new Precedent MultiTemp units through Penske. Those units, which are on Great Dane trailers, will be delivered in time to be featured at the 2013 IFDA show in Orlando.

“We are excited to share the unit and its benefits with our customers,” said King. “We have been transitioning our fleet to be more environmentally sound. The Precedent MultiTemp technology offers us compliancy now and into the future when it comes to fuel emissions and efficiency. But it also wins when it comes to noise pollution, making huge strides in reducing refrigeration unit noise levels.”

Cheney Brothers currently runs a fleet of 400 Great Dane and Kidron trailers and 375 tractors, which have been transitioning to Freightliner Cascadia in order to help the company meet fuel economy and environmental regulation goals and mandates. The new Precedent MultiTemp units join Cheney Brothers’ all-Thermo King reefer fleet, the majority of which are SB SPECTRUM multi-temperature units. A few single-temperature SB units are also part of the fleet, which averages a trailer turn rate of 7 years and a tractor turn rate of 8 years.

“We partner with Thermo King because the service we receive is Number One,” said King. “We always get friendly help and a great response. Thermo King of Palm Beach gives us the service we strive to give our own customers. The technology and service we get from Thermo King simply enables us to perform better.”

Cheney Brothers’ main headquarters is in Riviera Beach, with two additional locations in Ocala and Orlando. A new distribution center is planned to open in Port Charlotte in January 2015. The company was started in 1925 by two brothers and has grown into one of the largest food service distributors in the South by always treating customers like family. Today, Cheney Brothers has emerged as a broad line distributor supplying Southern hospitality 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and always with a smile. Led by Byron Russell, chairman and CEO, a fourth generation Cheney, the company maintains customer satisfaction as its highest priority.

“At Cheney Brothers, customers come first, and its service, people, experience and technology are second to none,” said Jack DiFloria, account manager, Thermo King of Palm Beach. “We are happy to have them as a Thermo King customer, but even prouder to have them as trusting business partner who is both progressive and forward-thinking when it comes to customers and the environment.”

Learn more about Cheney Brothers at

Thermo King of Palm Beach is part of the Thermo King of the Southeast (TKSE) dealership family. TKSE is comprised of six Thermo King-authorized parts, sales and service dealerships in Florida and Georgia that provide convenient service 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Learn more at


Customer: Cheney Brothers |

Dealer: Thermo King of the Southeast (TKSE) |


We have since replaced the S-600M with the enchanced S-610M. Please click here to learn more.