Semi Truck Interior Tour

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to live in a semi-truck sleeper? Where will you sleep, where will you relax, and how will you have space to live your life? We’ve got you covered with a semi-truck tour. We’ll cover how to make your truck feel like home and how to sleep well in sleeper cabs.

The basic sleeper cab includes a bed, storage places, a microwave, and a place for a small fridge. Blackout curtains also separate the driver’s cab from the sleeper cab. Truckers leave their engines idling because of weather conditions and economic pressures. Big rig engines and fuel tanks need to stay warm in cold weather.

You’ll find the pedals, steering wheel, and dashboard on the driver’s side of the truck. This is also where truckers will keep other tools and accessories that they may need, such as their GPS and cell phone.

There are a lot of controls, the steering wheel, gauges, and overhead storage. You’ll want to ensure you understand all the controls of today’s trucks. You’ll also want to know what levels all gages should be at so you don’t miss anything. Gauges are important because they can measure the pressure of different systems accurately.

Your CB radio is located on the passenger’s side, but there is nowhere to store anything. You are allowed to bring one passenger to sit in the passenger seat. At ShipEX, we have a free-rider policy. The person has to be 18 years or older and not pregnant.

Dashboard and Controls

Hands holding a semi-truck steering wheel

Dashboard gauges display vital information and data to keep drivers aware of how the truck and its internal parts function. These include the following:

  • Odometer
  • Voltmeter
  • Tachometer
  • Engine oil pressure
  • Fuel Gauge
  • Air Pressure
  • Temperature Gauges

It is essential to always look at the dashboard warning lights as they can signal various things. Knowing what each signal means is critical to identifying if a warning light needs immediate attention or if the issue can wait. While the location, color, and design of each symbol differ by the truck manufacturer, common symbols to be aware of include:

  • Check engine light
  • Low coolant level
  • Tire inflation
  • Alternator check
  • Sleeper Cab Amenities

Close-up image of a truck dashboard

Behind your driver’s seat is where you’ll make your home in your cabin. Your semi-truck sleeper has many built-in features that can help you feel comfortable in your truck. The bed allows you to sleep on the bottom or top bunk. Truck sleepers vary in size in modern trucks from 36 to the massive 230 in. It comes with a cozy mattress that will allow you to get the rest you need. When it’s time to sleep, the driver can cover the windows of the big rig with some blinds that trucking companies include. Overall, the sleeping area is designed to provide a relaxing, private, and spacious bed to get rest.

Sleeper Bunks

Hand lifting a mattress pad

This is where you will sleep and relax. The average size of the bed is 42″x80.″ Beforehand, all mattresses have to be certified for use in trucks. To keep the inside of a big rig at the right temperature, HVAC controls are easy to find and use. There are lights situated overhead to ensure you can see the inside of your vehicle very well, even at night. You can also charge all your devices, so you have full batteries at all times.

Temperature Control

Temperature control thermostat

You can fully control your semi-cabin temperature to ensure it’s at a comfortable spot even when you aren’t driving. The air conditioning system can heat or cool airflow into the driver’s seat and the sleeper cab. Some truckers also like to bring fans or heaters to help keep them cool or warm. Storage space is limited inside most sleeper cabs, so if you are bringing fans or heaters make sure you keep size in mind.

Cooking in the Cab

Illustration of three mini-fridges

You can bring a microwave and mini-fridge to simplify eating on the road. Keeping your favorite frozen meals, beverages, produce, and snacks can help you feel more at home. This can help you save money by not buying your food at truck stops or fast food places. At ShipEX, we provide a fridge with a freezer so that our drivers will be able to eat easily on the road. Check out our blog for meal ideas on the road!

Semi Truck Storage

Car organizer hanging on back of car seat

Throughout your truck, you’ll find storage that can help your space feel less cluttered while you drive and relax. Not only is there more than one storage compartment for your items, but some semi-trucks include full-size closets. This is helpful so you can bring different clothes with you on the road. You can also buy types of hanging storage built to help you maximize the space in your truck. If your sleeper cab is designed with an upper bunk this is another great way to store personal items. How you use your storage will also be affected by how you are traveling, if you are bringing a passenger along for the ride make sure you bring storage other than your upper bunk.

Get Comfortable in Your Semi Truck Sleeper

Cleaning supplies on a table

Maximize your storage

Many drivers recommend that you don’t get your truck too messy. Make sure to clean up food, wrappers, and other trash, so you don’t feel like your space is too cluttered. If you are bringing a pet on the road you may need to bring specialized cleaning supplies to help maintain your space. Don’t bring unnecessary, bulky items that give you less space to spread out. Make the most out of the storage in your truck. Also, it is very convenient if you ensure everything has a place to go. You can buy storage compartments made specifically for trucks to help you feel like you have more space for your stuff.

You’re allowed to decorate

String of lights piled on wood boards

Even if you don’t own your truck, you can still make it feel like home. Many companies have policies about how they allow decorations, so before you start decorating make sure you connect with your company on this. Numerous trucker gadgets can help you personalize your truck, including specific color bedding, seat covers, photos of your family, posters, and other small decorations. If you are a solo driver this can help you stay connected while on the road.  Your truck doesn’t have to stay empty! The place you live should reflect who you are- including your truck.

Utilize Electronics

GPS mounted on car dashboard as it drives down empty highway

You can install your tv in your cab or use your computer. Watch movies and videos, and listen to podcasts to help you stay occupied while relaxing in your sleeper cab. You can even keep a set of your favorite shows or movies in your cab to pull out when you need a pick-me-up.

Tips for a Goodnight’s Sleep in the Cab

Lit up truck stop at night

Find a safe place to park

Truck stops are often along main roads and can get very noisy, making it difficult to sleep in your cab for extended periods. If you want to sleep well in your sleeper cabins, invest in noise-canceling devices. For safety reasons, it is best to park near other drivers, so find ways to have a quiet night’s sleep while surrounded by trucks. Plan where you will park ahead of time, so you know you’re in for a good night’s rest.

Cover Windows

Depending on your schedule, you might have to sleep in the middle of the day while there are still hours of sunlight. Covering your windows can help trick your brain into thinking it’s time to sleep by blocking the light. There are many ways to block out the windows in your truck. You can make covers with cardboard, sheets, or other materials. You can also invest in window covers made specifically for your truck to block out most of the light.

Avoid Caffeine before bed

We all know that drinking caffeine on the road can help you avoid feeling drowsy. However, keep in mind when you drink your last caffeinated beverage and when you plan on pulling over to sleep. Many other distractions can make it difficult to fall asleep, so don’t drink coffee or energy drinks to make it harder on yourself.

Get Comfortable bedding

Just because you’re in your cab doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have comfortable bedding when you sleep. Make sure you invest in pillows, blankets, and mattress pads that will help you feel cozy when you sleep in the sleeper cab. You can even get duplicates of what you have at home in a smaller size. Making sure your bedding is comfortable can help you drive more comfortably the next day with less joint, back, and neck pain if you pick the right stuff.

Follow a routine

We know you’re life and your schedule can feel up in the air and change at a moment’s notice as a truck driver. Still, following a bedtime routine can help you feel more settled when the time comes. Maybe that’s reading a book, listening to a podcast, or watching a show before bed. Perhaps it’s cleaning up your truck before bed. Whatever routine works for you to help you have the best night’s rest and drive well tomorrow.

For more tips on sleeping well in a truck check out our blog!

Live Well and Drive Well in Your Semi Truck

Truck driver looking out of a open truck door

Now you have a better idea of what to expect from living in your semi-truck sleeper cab. The more you make it feel like home, the easier it will be to drive comfortably in your truck. While it can be hard to live and work in the same place, personalizing your cab and making it comfortable can create a more enjoyable space for the times when you aren’t driving. The better rested you are, the better and more focused you can be on the road.

The ShipEX Fleet

Colorful semi trucks parked in a row

We care a ton about our drivers and want them to be happy. We want them to feel comfortable and taken care of in their trucks. Our fleet consists entirely of the newest models of Freightliner Cascadias and Volvo 860s full of amenities. This could be your home away from home.