A near wheel loss incident with a tanker vehicle carrying toxic waste in the 1990's has led to the invention of the Checkpoint wheel nut indicator, by Mike Marczynski. It is a very simple device, but the concept of indicating a loose wheel nut was a major development towards improving road safety.
"Imagine a truck with 10 tyres. There are 10 wheel-nuts to check. Who has time to check them one by one?" said YonMing Group Senior Branch Manager Lee Chin How.
As they come in bright colours, Checkpoint gives users improved visibility of nut loosening. Checkpoint is a proven safety system that provides an early indication of wheel nut movement and wheel overheating in commercial vehicles. Drivers and fleet managers can see at a glance if the wheel nuts are loose and can take remedial action, demonstrating to transport authorities that the users are taking a responsible attitude to improving road safety. However, regardless of their effectiveness and popularity in Europe, Lee said they are not so popular in Malaysia.
Checkpoint's primary functions include to provide a clear visual indication of wheel nut movement that will eventually lead to a catastrophic wheel-off. It also provides an indication of wheel overheating which is otherwise difficult to detect, usually because of brake sticking or problems with the bearings.
Designed with safety and quality in mind, it is easy to guide the indicator on while also retaining a stronger, more durable hold on the lug nut. Made of high-grade polymer, it is designed to melt at a specific melting point which means it can identify heat related issues at the wheel such as sticking brakes or failed bearings. A higher temperature version is also available for more severe applications.
Thee Checkpoint wheel nut indicator comes in 21 different sizes to cover a wide scope of applications throughout various commercial vehicle segments. The most common size is the 33 mm which fits most commercial trucks, and in six standard colours. The 33 mm comes in two different configurations; the daisy chain and the point-to-point configurations. The latter makes it easier to tell if a lug nut has moved and needs to be inspected especially in a quick walk around the vehicle.