When setting up your electrician van, you need to be able to access everything. After all, you don't want to have to crawl inside and dig around every time you need a specific tool. Keeping your van in order will make your life so much easier — not to mention make you look a lot more professional in front of your customers. Let's take a look at some of the best tips for electrician van setup so you'll be ready to tackle any job at a moment's notice.
First things first — you need some shelves. These are essential for stacking all of your tools, equipment and other supplies. We recommend getting a row of shelves along the side of your van so you'll have plenty of room for components both small and large. Depending on the size of your electrician work van, you should be able to fit at least three rows and two columns of shelving on the side opposite the door. Most shelves and racks attach directly to the wall of the van, but you can also find models that swivel outward, which can make it easy to find what you need without climbing inside.
The most durable types of shelving are made of aluminum, but they can be quite costly. If you're looking to save some money, steel shelving might be good, but it's far heavier. Plywood is the cheapest and the heaviest, but it's also the easiest to DIY.
Make sure to leave the side with your door more open — possibly with just one column of shelves so you'll have room to get in and maneuver around. Or, if you prefer to access your van via the back door, you may even consider building out a cabinet in the side door where you can store extra crates and toolboxes for easy access.
Once you've got your shelves installed, you'll need to place some bins and drawers inside them to hold smaller parts and tools. This keeps them from rolling around and getting lost forever underneath the shelves. If you're feeling really fancy, you can even try color-coding your bins depending on what you decide to put inside them.
Another cool racking idea for smaller parts is to glue old PVC pipes to hold anything round. You can put them right on your shelving units or stick them right on the wall of the van, depending on how much extra space you have.
Your electrician van should have a main partition separating the passenger cabin from the back. This is a safety feature that protects you in case your load shifts while driving — i.e., things won't fly around and hit you in the head. You'll want this to be made out of a strong material like steel or aluminum, so that it will remain structurally sound in case you get into an accident and have heavy items flying off the shelves.
The good news is that your partition can double as a storage feature. While it might not be wide enough for a full shelving unit, you can hang hooks off of it for storing your uniform and safety gear. It's also a good place to attach your fire extinguisher, which is a must-have for any service professional.
There are a ton of things you'll need to keep in your van! You never know what problems you'll encounter on the job, so you always have to be ready. Here are just some of the hardware pieces you should keep in stock:
That's a lot, and we haven't even made it to your tools yet! Chances are, you have a toolbox already set up, but here's a recap of a few things you should have on hand:
We've covered how to get the most out of the inside of your van, but what about the outside? Check out our article on vehicle wraps and decals for ideas on how to customize your fleet.
We know this is all a lot to consider and you're probably thinking about just jumping right in and figuring it out on the fly, but take this process slowly and seriously so that you won't have to start over. Set up your racks and shelving units first according to the space you have available. Add in drawers and bins for smaller hardware, and even consider creative hacks like PVC pipes for additional storage. Make sure your van has a sturdy partition to keep you safe, and don't be afraid to use it for additional storage. Finally, make sure you have all the supplies you need to get the job done right.
When you're done with all that, one last thing you can do to organize your life as an electrician is to use FieldPulse. We're a business management app that helps service professionals manage their business on the go. With features like customer management, scheduling, estimates and invoicing, FieldPulse gives you all the tools you need to power up your electrician business. We'll help you say goodbye to excessive paperwork so you can spend more time lighting up your customers' lives. Learn more about how FieldPulse can save you time and money by scheduling your free demo today.