Is Poor Mobile Service Truck Setup Causing You Delays and Downtime? | MillerWelds

Is Poor Mobile Service Truck Setup Causing You Delays and Downtime?

Print Article
Your work truck setup may be preventing you from getting jobs done efficiently. Consider these factors when selecting equipment.
Service technician welds on a piece of heavy equipment in the field with his work truck in the background
A Miller EnPak on a service truck with a piece of heavy equipment in the background

Choosing service truck equipment

As a service truck operator, you likely spend most of your days as a one-person repair shop on wheels. There is no parts department to turn to when customers are relying on a quick repair in the field. You must be prepared to diagnose and fix anything, at anytime and anywhere.

Common challenges caused by your current work truck setup can prevent you from getting jobs done efficiently. Or they may simply add downtime or hassle to your day. Address these three priorities to help you get work done and move quickly to the next job.

  1. Make sure you have the tools and power to get the job done efficiently.
    The ability to perform many capabilities, from welding and carbon arc gouging to powering a variety of tools, is crucial. When your service truck setup requires multiple pieces of equipment to provide these capabilities — such as having two separate engine-driven solutions, like a welder and a compressor, or having a separate battery charge/jump start package — it reduces valuable payload space for tools and other parts you may need for a job. The need to have two engine drives on your truck also adds weight and expenses. Perhaps your equipment doesn’t provide enough power for the tools you need. This slows down your work or requires you to add yet another piece of equipment to your truck.
  2. Reduce downtime and maintenance from excessive idling.
    A traditional truck setup using a PTO for hydraulics and an engine-driven welder/generator for welding means you’re idling or running your truck at low rpms whenever you’re using the hydraulic crane, air compressor or other tools. A truck engine that constantly runs on the jobsite is a main cause of unnecessary downtime. That’s because the more a Tier 4 diesel engine idles or runs at low rpms, the more clogged the diesel particulate filter (DPF) becomes. This results in more frequent DPF regeneration and cleaning. A filter regeneration can take 20 to 30 minutes out of your day. If the filter becomes clogged to the point of engine shutdown, you may need to tow the truck to a dealer for DPF cleaning or replacement. This can add significantly more downtime to the process — and it can strand you in the field. Excessive idling or running the engine at low rpms can also cause more frequent maintenance to other areas of the truck. This can include changing the oil, air filters or brushes and more.
  3. Don’t allow tool performance to delay project timelines.
    Manufacturers of the equipment on your truck decide which power requirement takes priority over another when distributing power to multiple pieces of equipment at the same time. This locks you into operating on their terms rather than how you actually want your equipment to operate. When you can't determine how power is distributed among your equipment, you can't maximize available power to your most critical systems. You’re not getting optimal tool performance, which can keep you from completing work quickly and delay project timelines. To eliminate this issue, consider your equipment. Choose equipment that lets you direct power where it’s needed most and focus on getting the job done efficiently.

Service truck equipment and challenges

In the field, working quickly to solve customer problems is job one. When your service truck and equipment don’t have the capabilities to back you up, your performance can suffer, and you have to answer to your customers.

If you struggle with these challenges in the field, your equipment may be part of the problem. Speak with your fleet manager to see if they will consider a new solution for your service truck to provide all the power and capabilities you need. Also, learn more about which pieces of equipment are must haves for other truck operators and service technicians.