Newbe has Questions

Hi All,

My wife and myself are moving from NY to AZ. I will be driving a moving truck and she a car. We will be in close range with each other (1 or so miles). We would like to use something other than cell phones to communicate and were thinking of walkie talkies.

If so, can we use them inside a closed car and truck (will the metal body interfere with reception.

We will be on the road all day but only use them if we need to tell the other that a rest stop is needed or if one needs fuel. Can the walkie talkies stay on all day so they can signal when the other person is trying to communicate. How long will the battery charge last if little time is spent talking.

Can anyone recommend the best brand or model based on the above information.

Please feel free to make any comments and thank you for sharing your knowledge.


Have you looked at hand held CB radios, most of them can be run with a 12 volt cigarette plug in the vehicle.

If you are going to be in a little two vehicle convoy, then any radio should be fine, just choose one that can be plugged into power. Hand mics are also lighter, unless you have a very light handheld. If you chat a lot, then batteries die very quickly. Battery life is always calculated on a lot of listening and little transmit. In a convoy situation when you are bored, this increases drastically, and life goes down, hence why needing do power is important.

Hi. You can take FRS/GMRS 2 way radios into account. Most of them can transmit with range from 2 to 3 miles. I bought a floureon 22 ch walkie talkie and used them on our land excursions with no problems. My walkie talkie feeds on AAA battery and lasts for several days. But it’s still a good option to bring backup batteries when on the go, just in case.

1, Yes. You can use walkie talkies inside a closed car. some obstructions inhibit two-way radio performance,but a radio’s actual range will be about 2 miles .
2,Most two-way radios run on standard AA or AAA batteries. Others come with their own rechargeable NiMH (nickel-metal hydride) or NiCad (nickel-cadmium) battery packs. The higher a radio’s power output, the faster it will drain your batteries.a basic model may be sufficient for your needs.

A “walkie talkie” is any handheld radio, regardless of frequencies and services they cover.

For public use, you have CB, MURS, FRS, and GMRS.

Inside a car with no external antenna, CB won’t work. Metal surfaces inside car will block transmissions.

Inside a car with no external antenna, MURS will be iffy. With an external antenna, you will do great for a few miles.

Inside a car with no external antenna. (As FRS rules mandate), you could get decent communications, as UHF has more of a property of bouncing off metal surfaces.

GMRS operates the same as FRS, except you can use external antennas and you are allowed higher power. GMRS, however requires a $65 license.

If you use an FRS/GMRS radio, bear in mind the rules only allow use of channels 1-7 on LOW power, and channels 8-14 without a GMRS license. (you are forbidden from use of channels 15-22) With a GMRS license, all 22 channels are available in all configurations/power settings.

Hopefully SteveG comes back to read these very useful replies, but if not and if there are others looking for the same information, I would like to suggest one further alternative to FRS/GMRS radios. FRS and GMRS consumer radios are cheap enough to just throw away if you break them and usually work well except in areas where every kid and their dog’s dog has one, but not everyone wants cheap radios that share common channels.

One of the best radios for totally private communication on a licence-free band is the new Motorola DLR1020 and DLR1060. They work on a frequency-hopping, spread-spectrum 900MHz band and cannot be monitored by anyone without Motorola DLR or DTR radios. They are well-built business-class radios, with batteries that will last all day and can be recharged with a USB plug. Being 900MHz, the signal is not blocked by any glass or metal and in my range tests with UHF and VHF radios, and DLR and DTR digital radios, the DLR and DTR radios have the longest range of any UHF business or consumer radio on the market. They are still line-of-sight of course, but I have had good results even outdoors where VHF is supposed to be better than UHF.

They are not cheap radios, but will last for years. The batteries will last all day and won’t have to be replaced every two years. (I have batteries in my Motorola DTR radios ten years old that are still as good as the day they were made.) I love the clarity of the audio and think they are about the best on the licence-free market, second only to their big brother Motorola DTR550 radio.

Definitely an alternative for those folks willing to spend a bit more money for higher quality business-class radios!

Because I use two-way radios every day in my business and have my own fleet of Motorola DTR digital radios, the great folks at sent me a sample DLR1060 as soon as it was available for evaluation. I really loved it. I am not replacing my DTRs, but it is sure an impressive radio!

They don’t know it yet, but they ain’t getting that radio back. All they will get from me is a credit card number; that’s how much I like it. (And they had it up to me here in Canada in three days. Great service.)