Service Body Installation Tips
Choosing the right service body design for your particular landscaping company’s needs is the biggest hurdle when setting up a work truck.
The second hurdle is how to set up the service body once it arrives for installation – or already mounted on your new truck.
Professional upfitters say there are three basic goals in setting up a service body: functionality, serviceability and durability.
Functionality is having the right accessory products onboard in the right locations to provide access to tools and parts in the most efficient, logical manner.
Serviceability is mounting those accessories in such a manner that makes them easy to get to and replace should they be damaged or fail.
That’s where durability comes into play. Don’t skimp on tools and products when up-fitting. Using LED lights instead of lights with filaments, protecting wiring with heavy-duty split-loom and using PVC conduit for running air lines to external hose connectors like you do in a shop are examples of planning in durability.
If you need an air compressor, a generator and a welder, think about installing a compact unit.
Good auxiliary lights are always welcome for those night jobs. Small LED strip lights are readily available from a number of sources and are ideal for illuminating cabinets and storage boxes.
LED flood and work lights take very little juice to use, and they withstand vibrations so they’ll probably last longer than the service body they are mounted on.
Put them on all four corners and use a pre-wired/fused switch control box, mounted in a convenient location on service body, to make the initial installation quick and easy.
You can use the same control box to power the warning strobes and other electrical accessories such as a bank of battery chargers for your cordless tools.
Having air and electricity is great, but if you can’t get it to where you are working than it’s useless. And, if you have coils of hose and extension cords all over the place, it’s a mess.
As the age-old saying goes: “A place for everything, and everything in its place.“
Consider installing a spring-retracting cord and air hose reel that are small enough to fit into the service body compartments.
Mounting a hose reel’s guide plate to the floor of an upper/lower locking compartment that feeds to an external location on the service body keeps the compartments safe from the weather and from someone using an exposed hose exit as their way into the service body.
Another mode of protection from the weather and hard use is to coat the service body inside and out with a quality spray-on bedliner material. You may even opt to have it color-matched to your new truck.
Taking a little extra time to plan out how you want a service body configured for work is just as important as which one to buy. Maybe more so.
Vanair’s Air N Arc 150 is a compact, self-contained generator, air compressor and stick welder ideal for use in pickup service bodies. It has a remote-control panel as well, so it can be run without getting in the bed.