To a veteran air conditioning service technician, his HVAC van storage is second nature. He knows where everything is stored, each item has its own place, and when that place is empty, he’s missing something critical for his job. The experienced AC repair person has also figured out the best configuration to make his HVAC van storage help him be as efficient and safe as possible.
If a rookie service technician were to apprentice under him, here are some things he might learn during a normal conversation about proper van setup for the air conditioning industry.
Q. Why is it important to plan out where all the small parts are kept in the van?
A. Locating parts, tools, and equipment quickly leads to faster completion of service calls, satisfied customers, and increased revenue for the company. Imagine the time it would take to dig through a large box in your van that is filled with relays, switches, connectors, thermostat boxes, pipe parts, and everything you need all jumbled together. If you were looking for one small part in that large box, you’d waste a lot of time.
Customizing the HVAC van storage with smaller drawers and bins makes it easy to locate and retrieve the parts you need. It also makes it faster to identify when you are missing parts, and when you need to restock your van before the next service call.
Q. What’s the best way to haul refrigerant tanks in a service van?
A. There are a couple of different options, and it’s a matter of preference, and how many tanks you usually haul at one time. Some HVAC van storage layouts have tank holders that sit on the van floor, securing one tank in an upright position.
Another tank storage option is a tank rack that is welded with sloped cradles, which make it easy for loading and unloading the tanks. Heavy steel tank racks can usually hold 3-4 tanks in nearly the same footprint space as one upright tank holder. As an extra storage solution, a welded tank tray rack can be installed on top of the rack system, offering another storage shelf for equipment.
Both of these options use a strap or bungee cord to secure the tank to the storage fixture, and can often be located where it’s best for you in the van. Most technicians put these near the doors, for easy access without having to crawl inside the van.
Q. How do I optimize the best layout for my HVAC van storage?
A. There are a lot of customization options available. These vary from homemade solutions strapped together to pre-designed packages already configured as a solution for the HVAC industry. Solid steel modular components can also fit together for an effective storage solution.
The benefit of pre-designed trade packages as the storage solution is that careful spacing, design and planning have incorporated every need of a specialist in the industry. An air conditioning service technician carries specific tools, parts, and equipment; and the pre-designed packages incorporate trade specific items such as tank racks, vice mount holders, divided shelving, drawers, and hooks into the HVAC van storage layout.
Knowing how to organize the repair technician service van can save time and effort, and ultimately, money for the company. Take time to think through the flow of parts and equipment needed for a job, and organize your HVAC van storage in a way that allows you to operate more efficiently.