Choosing the right vehicle for work isn’t always easy. In many cases, you have to strike a balance between features to make your job easier and more practical concerns like cost and aesthetics. This can be especially tricky for electricians since their needs on the job often differ from the needs of other types of contractors. How can you find a work vehicle that gives you what you need without breaking the bank?
There are a few things that you can look for when evaluating a work vehicle to see if it’s right for your company. While the specifics of what you need in a vehicle may differ slightly from others based on the specific work you do and the sorts of jobs you take, here are some of the features that are most likely to be must-haves for your next vehicle purchase.
One of the biggest needs you have as an electrician is storage, which is why so many electricians prefer vans over the trucks that are more common among other contractors. Not only do you need storage for a number of different outlets, connectors, and other small components, but you also need to be able to store lengths of cable for various purposes. Having a van with large areas for storage is great; if you can find one with cabinets or other closable containers built in, then that can be even better. If you’d prefer a truck, look for one with either built-in truck boxes or that is designed with a deep bed where you can install aftermarket storage options.
Another big plus for any work vehicle is cabin room, as it lets you get more workers to a job location with a single vehicle. True, this isn’t quite as great a concern for electricians as it is for other contractor types since they’re more likely to work with only two or three crew members. If you frequently work large jobs that require additional crew members, though, having a little bit of extra seating can save you a lot when it comes to keeping your work fleet on the road.
A new work vehicle doesn’t do you much good if you can’t effectively get it to the job. If you’re trying to optimize the storage capabilities of your new work vehicle, make sure that you don’t choose something that’s so large it will be hard to get into and out of job sites with restricted overheads. If you do a lot of work in unfinished construction sites, you’ll also need something that has enough power to handle conditions where the parking lot or access roads may not be finished.
Maintenance and Operation Costs
As you narrow down your choices, look into the average operating costs for the vehicles you’re considering. You’re going to have to keep your new work vehicle on the road, so choosing a hybrid or other option to keep fuel costs low can be a great choice if all other things are equal. You might also want to look up some other maintenance costs such as what it will take to get new tires or have the engine worked on. Some vehicles have significantly higher maintenance costs than others, so considering the cost of ongoing maintenance when making your final decision can really save you money down the road.