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Recommendation for service vehicle

Recommendation for service vehicle

Recommendation for service vehicle

Greetings all,
We are planning on purchasing a new service vehicle. We are classic interconnect company, supporting voice, data and video distribution systems. So, what do you use for tech service vehicle and do you like it? Would you buy the same vehicle again?

RE: Recommendation for service vehicle

We have Toyota Corolla's in our fleet because we outsource the cabling (except small jobs like single runs or 25 pair if needed in a bind) and bigger installs all the phones get shipped to site. Nice on gas and reasonably comfortable to drive but no exciting driving whatsoever. That is why they last so long.

I had a Dodge Grand Caravan before and it was OK for storage and cables and all the stuff if you do cabling and need a ladder with you and maybe a long extension ladder on the roof when needed. Cheap car really but gas mileage is not great. Same range as teh Toyota but the tank is twice the size and so is the bill.

I guess you do some cabling so room for ladder, cable and storage in the vehicle is important.
The driving style is important too, if you beat the Caravan it will kill you on repairs as it is not made for that (neighbour of mine is 29 and learned that the hard way) but I had my 2007 model since 2009 and gas and regular maintenance and oilchanges and easy driving and so far it has 190k on it (km not miles) and still sounds healthy.

Joe W.


"This is the end of the world, make sure to buy your T-shirt before it is too late"
Original expression of my daughter

RE: Recommendation for service vehicle

Our shop used Toyota Matrix hatchback with a roof rack. We were disappointed when they were discontinued.
We currently use the Toyota RAV4 LE. Can store everything I need, reliable, and powerful enough as a 4 cylinder. I have the roof racks and ordered cross bars so I can tie a ladder to the top.

I am motivated by laziness so I can tell you that I have fit a 7' ladder after laying the passenger seat back.

I like it because it is versatile. For my day to day calls there is enough room in the back with the back seats up for my tool loadout and some extra room for parts. If I have a job that needs more storage then I fold the seats down and can pack in the cable.

Seems good on fuel too.


RE: Recommendation for service vehicle

we always used the chevy hhrs we just got a nissan nv compact though and the guys seem to love it. Great on gas and has full shelving plus ladder rack

RE: Recommendation for service vehicle

We are using Ford Ranger trucks with toppers and one Toyota Tacoma since the Ranger was discontinued. However, any new vehicle will likely be a Kia Soul. They get good mileage and can carry a fair amount of gear, plus Kia's have a good warranty.

RE: Recommendation for service vehicle

We use a Toyota Tundra extended cab pick up (4x4) with a cap on the back with cabinets on both sides. We service a rural area and I love it. We never worry about the weather or ground clearance on new construction (country Building lots with no drive way). I use the back seats for electronic gear and tools, and there is a ton of room inside. The mileage is a bit of a kick in the pants (still haven't seen over 20MPG).
If we did more work in cities and didn't need to worry about the weather I would love to try a Ford Transit connect, or a Nissan NV contractors van.

RE: Recommendation for service vehicle

If a van is too big then I would be getting one of these two:

Ford Transit Connect

Nissan Compact Cargo

We take the time to try to answer your questions for free, please return the favor and take the time to answer back and include any resolution you found elsewhere, thanks.


Toronto Canada

RE: Recommendation for service vehicle

We went to the Ford Transit back when they first came out. Not a bad vehicle, decent on gas, has plenty of room for cable, equipment, etc.
We also service a fairly rural area, goes through the snow well with good snow tires. It's a bit of a stiff ride and slightly under powered IMHO.
I do like having sliding side doors on both sides of the vehicle, makes it much easier to get tools out when parallel parking next to snow bank :)

RE: Recommendation for service vehicle

@vtphoneguy - how do you store ladders in Transit Connect? Some of our guys are on the tall side, so driver seat must be all the way back, forcing the protective cage to be back as well. I've heard other comments about being under-powered.

@everyone else - thanks for the comments. Surprised at all of the folks who use automobile/crossover SUV. While I use such a vehicle, it wouldn't work out as a service vehicle for installer/service guy in our business. Although I'd truly like the reduced costs.

RE: Recommendation for service vehicle

I carry a Little Giant knockoff ladder, so it fits fine in the back. I've seen many in this area that use a roof mounted ladder rack for big extension ladders.

As I am only 5' 7", I don't have a problem with the seat :)

However our taller guys look like they are driving a clown car...The cage does "give" a little when pushed.

You will NOT break the Land Speed Record!

RE: Recommendation for service vehicle

I use a Toyota Sienna (minivan). I really like it. I keep 2 step ladders (6' and 8') on the inside (down the middle). Then on the passenger side of the ladder I keep parts (spare phones, circuit boards, cards etc). On the driver side are tools and hardware. In the back is cable. Plenty of room, easily accessed, drives nice, decent on gas and gets around in the snow well. What ever you get, make sure that it has bluetooth for your phone. That's the one thing I wish I had. I hate the in-the-ear ones.

RE: Recommendation for service vehicle

@kampling - do you have a classic driver safety cage in van? If so, did you cut a hole in order to fit ladders? I've come to not like Bluetooth for the delay that it adds. I've been using a wired Plantronics headset for in-cehicle cell use - it works like a champ.

RE: Recommendation for service vehicle

I bought the wannabe truck -Ranger in late 2007. Four months later the price dropped.
As a little parts/courier truck it would be fine but as I didn't get the 4X4, it's been the best snowboard I've ever ridden in winter. In summer, on gravel roads the back end tries to pass the front end. One bucket of dirt and the mudflaps are three inches off the asphalt. Again, should have gotten the 4X4 with the towing package, and better suspension.

I'd test driven a used automatic Ranger and suspected the vehicle was possessed when putting into D. That was a short test-drive.(P to D to P. That was it.)

Before 77k, I'd replaced Master cylinder/earlier some hydraulic clutch part, clutch plate and the engine blew in August at 87K. No warning, just started shreiking like my grade 2 teacher.(I can't blame either but I'm not that hard on clutches, only teachers.)Although I hated to spend the money on a newer engine (50K), I like having the truck for household hauling but don't recommend it for winter at all.


"The phone was working fine before it knocked over my coffee."

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