Understanding Service Trucks: Types, Differences, and Equipment

You’ve come to the right place if you’re new to the field service industry and need a service truck. Service or utility trucks are essential vehicles in industrial sectors. They serve as mobile workshops to complete on-site repairs and maintenance across various industries. Loaded with essential tools and equipment, they’re the go-to solution for professionals seeking flexibility and accessibility while working on job sites. This guide will explore the different types and variations of service trucks, including utility and service bodies. We’ll also clarify the distinctions between service and mechanics trucks and highlight the benefits gained from these specialized vehicles. Finally, we’ll provide valuable tips on what to look for and where to find service trucks for sale.

What is a Service Truck?

A service truck is a chassis cab equipped with a body, available in various sizes and styles to meet specific requirements. Also known as truck boxes, beds, utility beds, or mechanics trucks, a service truck is designed for technicians to carry equipment, tools, and parts to job sites. They enable on-site repairs and maintenance, proving more efficient and cost-effective than transporting equipment back and forth from repair shops. A service truck often features additional tools like air compressors and welders, enhancing the capabilities of mechanics. Safety features such as scene lights, backup alarms, and cameras are essential due to the hazardous work site in which service trucks operate.

The Difference between Service and Utility Bodies

Professionals in the construction, utilities, and maintenance industries can choose the ideal solution for their needs by understanding the differences between service and utility bodies. Service bodies provide easy access and flexibility for accommodating equipment and tools with compartments and an open cargo area. In contrast, utility bodies offer a fully enclosed cargo area with a more spacious interior to accommodate larger, long items. Workbenches are often added to the interior of a utility body to protect technicians from extreme climates. Both service bodies and utility bodies provide secure storage and protection from external elements, but they serve different purposes and have slightly different designs.

The Difference between Service and Mechanics Trucks

Service trucks and mechanics trucks have notable differences, despite people using the terms interchangeably. Service trucks transport tools, equipment, and supplies to job sites, featuring storage compartments, drawers, shelving, and racks. They often come with an air compressor or a smaller crane. Industries such as plumbing, electrical, HVAC, and construction find rely on them. On the other hand, mechanic trucks are purpose-built for mobile mechanical work. They come equipped with a crane capable of moving engines, generators, and other heavy components. Mechanics trucks typically boast a larger and sturdier body to support the crane and provide extra compartments and storage space. This allows them to pack more tools and equipment than a standard service truck. Field mechanics can use them as they are typically equipped with a heavy-duty crane, welder, and air compressor, providing additional functionalities.

Explore Different Types of Utility and Service Trucks

  • Steel Service Bodies: Renowned for their robustness and longevity, steel service bodies thrive in heavy-duty tasks and challenging work environments, easily handling heavier loads.
  • Crane Bodies: Utility trucks with built-in cranes offer invaluable assistance in lifting and moving heavy objects. Particularly valuable in the construction, utilities, and maintenance industries.
  • Canopy Bodies: Also known as enclosed service bodies, canopy bodies feature covered compartments, protecting from adverse weather conditions and securing valuable tools and equipment from theft.

Equipment  Needs for Field Service

Field service techs need specific equipment to efficiently and safely complete their jobs. Essentials include service cranes, which vary in lifting capacity ratings and boom reach. Air compressors are also important. You must consider CFM and PSI needs and preference for reciprocating or rotary screw types and above-deck or under-hood systems. Additionally, welders are vital in service trucks to facilitate repairs on-site. Researching and understanding your requirements is essential for field service work. Talk to your builder about the special equipment and accessories you need.  Depending on the body you decide to go with, you must keep it well organized. We have some tips ad information on how to optimize your storage space. 

Why Invest in a Service Truck

Many businesses have equipment that cannot be easily transported to a central shop for repairs and maintenance. As a result, industries dealing with heavy equipment in the field, such as construction, utilities, and maintenance, find service, utility, and mechanics trucks to be indispensable. 

The key benefits of mobile workshops include increased efficiency and productivity, cost-effectiveness, and the ability to perform on-site repairs and maintenance. Technicians can quickly address equipment breakdowns when carrying all necessary tools, equipment, and parts, reducing downtime and minimizing project schedule disruptions. 

For the same reason, tradespeople like electricians, HVAC professionals, plumbers, and telecommunications workers find utility trucks necessary for success. A service truck with equipment, parts, and tools for installation, repair, and service work saves time and money. If they have multiple service calls to make, they can carry everything needed for the day in their truck, saving them time going between the shop and work sites. Being prepared when arriving reduces stress, improves efficiency, and gives a professional appearance.

In conclusion, service trucks are versatile and valuable assets for companies that own equipment, mechanics who offer on-site repair and special services, and other skilled tradespeople. 

Key Considerations when Buying a Service or Utility Truck

When buying a utility truck, consider vital factors to meet specific job and industry needs:

  • Weight Capacity: Ensure the truck can handle the load you carry and lift.
  • Passenger Capacity: Adequate seating and space for everyone traveling in the truck regularly.
  • Drive Type: Choose rear, four, or all-wheel drive based on terrain and weather conditions.
  • Safety Features: Prioritize safety with airbags, stability control systems, and advanced driver assistance systems.
  • Tool and Supply Requirements: Confirm compartments are spacious and can carry all necessary tools and supplies.
  • Equipment Crucial for Field Service: Boosting Productivity and Capability
  • Service Cranes: Essential for lifting and moving heavy equipment and parts during repairs.  Check out our guide to selecting the right crane. 
  • Air Compressors:  Provides power for pneumatic tools like impact wrenches, drills, grinders, and hammers. 
  • Welders: Indispensable for on-site welding and repairs, saving time and responding quickly to repair needs.

Emphasizing Safety & Security: A Top Priority

Without a doubt, you must prioritize safety and security. Use GPS tracking, cameras, alarms, and side-pack gang locks to protect equipment from theft. Comply with safety regulations and include built-in safety features like grab handles and steps for safe access to tools and equipment. Essential safety tools like cones, warning triangles, flags, lighting, and reflective gear enhance visibility on job sites and alert oncoming traffic.

Elevate Your Brand with Customized Exteriors

Another key point, consider selecting a paint color scheme reflecting your business or adding a vinyl wrap to promote services and increase awareness. Enhance appearance using unique graphic designs. Maintain a clean and organized work environment to leave a positive impression on clients and ensure preparedness for every job.

Maintenance and Upkeep: Ensuring Reliability and Longevity

Lastly, regularly inspect and conduct routine tasks like oil changes and tire rotations. Check tools, cranes, and other equipment. Follow the manufacturer’s advice and maintain a log to stay on top of tasks. This is a good time to ensure your truck has the necessary parts and tools.


Where can I find a service truck for sale near me?

There are several places where you can find a service truck for sale. Here are a few options:

  • Online Marketplaces: Websites like eBay, Craigslist, and Facebook Marketplace are great resources.
  • Auctions: Auctions can be an excellent place to find used trucks for sale. You can search online for auctions in your area.
  • Classified Ads: Check your local newspaper or trade publications for classified ads, including digital classifieds.
  • Equipment Dealers: Many dealers sell upfitted truck bodies and other heavy equipment. You can also check with local truck dealers or search online.
  • Manufactures: Some truck body mfg, such as Summit, may have new and used trucks for sale on their websites. You can spec your truck on our site and get a free quote.

Researching and carefully considering your needs and budget when buying a service truck is important. Consider talking to an experienced fleet manager or field tech to ensure you get a safe and suitable truck.

Maximize Your Potential

In conclusion, service, mechanic, and utility trucks are the workhorses that power various industries. Enabling professionals to deliver top-notch on-site services and repairs efficiently. These versatile vehicles reduce downtime, maximize productivity and save valuable time and costs for businesses and clients.

Investing in the proper service truck can elevate your operations. Understanding the variations between service trucks and mechanics’ trucks, chassis options, and the appropriate crane size are important. And customizing utility truck beds to suit your needs are essential to optimizing capabilities.

Most important, prioritize safety and security to ensure the well-being of your equipment and personnel. Incorporating the appropriate features can provide the necessary protection. Branding and keeping your service truck in top condition showcase professionalism and create a lasting impression on clients.

Service, mechanic, and utility trucks are not just vehicles but the backbone of efficient and effective on-site operations. With the right choice and proper care, these trucks can drive your business to new heights of success.

Summit Truck Equipment: Your Partner in Choosing the Perfect Service Truck

At Summit, we take pride in helping customers get the ideal service or lube truck customized to their unique needs. In fact, when designing your truck, we discuss the required crane size and capacities, truck brand preference, and chassis type to select the body and accessories. Understanding your specs and job requirements empowers us to provide you with a  service truck solution to meet your needs. Contact your regional sales rep to get started on your new service truck.