If you’re a trucker, you know that Citizens Band Radio Service (CB radio) is a vital tool when you’re on the road. The CB radio allows anyone to communicate with one another through a radio system.

CB radios also help truckers stay informed about events on the road, get traffic and weather updates, and make contact in an emergency situation in rural areas.

What makes a great CB radio, and how do I pick the best one? Continue reading to see our ultimate CB radio buying guide for truckers.

Types of CB Radios

Currently, there are three popular types of CB radios:

  • Mobile CB Radio – These are the typical CB radios, consisting of a small box with knobs, a display, and a corded microphone attached.
  • All-In-One Handset CB Radio – These CB radios have all the knobs and buttons located on the handset. Usually, these units plug into the cigarette lighter.
  • Handheld CB Radio – These CB radios can be taken out of the vehicle and are more mobile than the other two.

The best type of CB radio is the mobile CB radio since these types typically have the best range and the most features for truckers.

Important Features

When searching for CB radios, there are a few key features that your new CB radio should have. Below are the features that you should look for in any quality CB radios:

  • Instant Emergency Channel – Channel 9 is the emergency channel, but CB radio makers have included a button to switch to that channel automatically.
  • Weather Reporting – Some CB radios have a weather scan that can tap into any local NOAA weather stations for up-to-date weather reporting.
  • RF Gain – One of the most critical features on a CB radio. RF gain allows you to filter out signals so you can hear conversations clearly either close or far away.
  • Auto Noise Limiter – This feature keeps annoying and harmful noises from coming out of your speakers.
  • Channel Scan – CB radios with this feature automatically search through channels so you can keep your hands on the wheel.
  • LED or Backlit Display – Not all CB radios have a backlit display, which is crucial for using your CB radio at night.

Other Considerations

Some of the fancier CB radios will have Bluetooth compatibility for pairing a phone. Others will have a PA system or single sideband (SSB) for broadcasting longer ranges. These features aren’t crucial, but some users may find them useful.

Another thing to consider is that CB radios need an antenna, which is a separate cost. Antennas aren’t expensive, but they take a little bit of work to install.

Which One Should I Choose?

Some of the more well known and popular brands are Cobra Electronics, Midland Radio, and Uniden. Among the most popular CB radios for truckers are the Cobra 29 LTD Classic or the Uniden Bearcat 980.

However, there is an abundance of quality CB radios on the market. Make sure that any CB radio you’re interested in has all the essential features listed above, and you can’t go wrong.

How to Pick the Best CB Radio (Ultimate Guide for Truckers) was last modified: by