In May 2023, it was estimated that the UK alone was home to more than 1.2 million plug-in cars. This figure was then broken down into 780,000 battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and 500,000 plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs). The impact of the rise in electric vehicles is topical amongst the automotive aftercare market, with many already prepared or planning for servicing BEVs, however there are many garages and workshops who aren’t sure of where to start, what equipment they need, what space is required, what changes they need to make. That’s where a specialist garage equipment company, such as Straightset, can help. Straightset shares a recent case study demonstrating the value added of engaging with teams who have experience of installing equipment suitable for BEVs, as well as has the breath and range of equipment to provide your garage with solutions to your requirements.
Straightset, the garage equipment specialists, were contacted by a training college looking to update their existing motor vehicle training workshop into a specifically designed service and training centre for electric vehicles. With a budget in mind and an ultimate objective in place, they needed to find a company to offer expert advice, consultancy and knowledge to deliver the project.
With a significant number of battery electric vehicle (BEV) workshop projects already delivered, highly experienced project teams including a design team knowledgeable on the requirements needed for BEV workshops, dedicated equipment specifically designed for electric vehicles and trained and experienced installation teams, Straightset was an easy choice.
The customer provided a drawing of the existing workshop, and from here Straightset’s project team could quickly establish the required changes. The existing base plate-mounted vehicle lifts in the workshop were unsuitable for raising BEVs. The old lifts’ arms were not intended for today’s lower vehicles.
Straightset specified new dedicated BEV vehicle lifts. The design of a BEV specific lift, such as the Space SDE2357 EV 2-post lift with 3.5 tonne capacity, has special jointed lift pads, allowing improved clearance without lifting arms getting in the way. Each lift was provided with charging points to ensure the vehicle 12v system battery is not drained during servicing.
A key piece of workshop equipment required in garages servicing BEVs is a battery lifting table. Straightset recommended a 1 tonne universal lifting table for the safe removal of batteries from electric vehicles.
The existing workshop also did not have adequate storage for tools within each training bay, or the tools required for electric vehicles. Straightset designed and produced a cabinet system, comprising of tool, waste, storage, and services dispensing cabinets. Each were supplied with insulated tools from Straightset’s partner Bahco, all specifically designed for dealing with high voltage vehicles and installed into bespoke foam inlays.
Straightset project teams also advised on the recommendations for fast charging points outside the workshop and recommended providers to deliver this.
After initial discussions a CAD drawing was designed to bring the project to life, featuring sufficient space around each bay to enable to enable not only battery displacement, but for a number of students to observe the operation. This was supplied with a fully detailed quotation of suggested workshop equipment and the reasons these meet the requirements of servicing electric vehicles. Once the customer felt fully informed and happy, the installation project was managed and delivered by Straightset’s highly trained engineers.
The key to the successful relationship and end -goal delivery was the consultation and advice our project lead provided as part of the package. Providing clear recommendations, drawings, and product specifications, this gave the customer confidence that Straightset was the right team to deliver an EV workshop fit to train the new skills technicians need.
As a result, the customer was delighted with not only the overall results, but also the ways in which they were achieved. The utilisation of collaborative communication throughout enabled our specialists to transform the workshop into a highly effective, user-friendly facility that met all the relevant requirements.
Michael Michaelides the Executive Director Resources at West Thames College had this to say about the project; “West Thames College has partnered with Straightset to update an existing Motor Vehicle workshop with new equipment and tools to support Electric and Hybrid vehicles. From initial design to final handover, Straightset managed the entire project seamlessly to deliver a series of new vehicle lifts, workshop cabinets and tools and specialist equipment. We are extremely pleased with the outcome and look forward to working with Straightset on new
projects in the future.”