Episode 06: Why you need a CB Radio

A CB Radio can be a trucker’s best friend and in some cases his greatest time saver. In this episode, I will explain to you the benefits of having one in your vehicle is not only a wise choice but one of the best investments in tools you can have with you.

What you’ll learn in this episode:

  • Why you should have a CB Radio in your rig.
  • How they can save you time in your daily grind. Hard to plan a detour one.
  • How some customers demand that you have it. Talk to scale houses and loaders. 
  • Find a place for parking.
  • Why you don’t need to spend a lot of money on a system.
  • How to best use your CB Radio.
  • We will debunk some of the myths of the road.
  • Proper radio etiquette.
  • They can save your life.

 “For the good old American life: For the money, for the glory, and for the fun… mostly for the money.” – Bandit – from “Smokey and the Bandit”

Additional resources:

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Common radio lingo:

  • Affirmative – used in place of “yes”
  • Negative – used in place of “no”
  • Over – you’re done speaking but would like a reply
  • Out – you’re signing off and terminating the call
  • Over and Out – you’re done speaking and the conversation is over
  • Radio Check – the radio equivalent of “can you hear me now?”
  • Read You Loud & Clear – in response to “radio check” meaning your transmission signal is good
  • Roger – confirms you understand what the other person is saying
  • Stand By – you acknowledge receiving the transmission, but cannot respond immediately
  • What’s Your 20? – asking for the other party’s location
  • Wilco – short for “will comply”

Radio Etiquette for Clear Communication

Contrary to the name, two-way radios are really a one-at-a-time communication system. Unlike a cellphone, you cannot speak and listen at the same time. That means if you’re pressing the talk button no one else can be heard. If you think of a short, clear, and concise message BEFORE you push the talk button it will help keep the channels open — plus you’ll save your battery life.

To help keep channels open, users have developed their own two-way radio lingo to help keep messages brief and avoid confusion of similar-sounding words or phrases.

Since multiple people can be on a channel at the same time, it is important to identify yourself and the intended recipient of your message. It also helps to indicate when you are done speaking. Use the appropriate jargon depending on if you are looking to continue the conversation or sign off.

Do not transmit sensitive or confidential information. Although there are privacy measures that can be used, it should be assumed that others can hear your conversation.

Quick tips:

  • Be prepared — know what you’re going to say BEFORE you push the talk button
  • Identify yourself and the intended recipient
  • Indicate when you’re finished speaking or terminating the call
  • Keep it secure by not sharing sensitive or confidential information
  • Keep it short, clear, and concise
  • Learn the lingo