Category: Company Updates

Do I Need a Power Distribution Module (PDM)?

Do I need a PDM? Is a PDM right for my application? How do I know I need a PDM? These might be questions you are asking yourself as you design your vehicles’ electrical system. So, let’s take a look at a few top scenarios that warrant the use of a sealed power distribution module and real life examples of these scenarios.

  1. You need to localize a power source

Vehicle electrical systems can get complicated quickly as functionality continues to increase model year to model year. Running long wire harnesses throughout the vehicle to one central power source can be expensive and cumbersome. One way you can avoid extremely complex wire harnesses is to localize the power throughout your vehicle using power distribution modules. Hard-wired sealed power distribution modules are a cost effective way to house plug-in components such as fuses, relays and diodes to power different devices throughout the vehicle. 

See below image of a PDM localized to power control panel on a zero turn mower.

  1. You need to simplify your wiring

Often a benefit of power localization is wire simplification. PDMs can also help simplify your wiring and consolidate your components. This in return can save time in your assembly process (labor costs) and cost of components. See below image of a before and after of a control panel where a PDM was implemented to do just that.

  1. You need the option to expand functionality

We all know the design is never done. Whether it’s changes from the end user or pressure from internal stakeholders, expanded functionality requests are bound to pop up. So it is crucial to include room to scale functionality. PDMs are available in a variety of configurations and are a great way to add in functionality without sacrificing additional real estate in the design. 

See below image of a PDM schematic with empty cavities for expansion of functionality.

  1. You need to protect electrical components in a sealed enclosure

Environmental pressures continue to be a concern for design engineers across all industries. Whether it’s regulations or harsh environmental conditions, the need to protect crucial components that power devices throughout your vehicle is paramount. That’s where sealed power distribution modules come in. These boxes securely house relays, fuses, and diodes against water and debris, allowing for smooth function of your vehicle.

See below image of a sealed PDM on a standing snow plow. These components need to be protected in the harsh weather conditions this machine is designed for. 

If you think a power distribution module might be right for you, Chief designs and manufactures a line of power distribution modules, known as the BRIC. Contact us today to get started with the BRIC!