Running an auto repair shop requires a lot of attention to detail to remain lucrative. With that in mind, the floor plan should be constructed to produce the quickest turnover and ensure top-notch safety. Because of this, your shop set-up must allow for safe working conditions, as well as maximum productivity and functionality. With that in mind, it becomes clear that auto repair shop design is a crucial component in the business’ success. Someone is entrusting their vehicle to you, after all, so the layout of your space must reflect your skills.
Modern auto repair shop designs are usually quite complex. As nerve-racking as that may sound, if you know how to tackle the shop’s layout, it’s actually not that hard.
Auto repair shop space necessities
The services your shop provides determine the usage of your space. Therefore, as an auto repair shop, a variety of things should be taken into account when planning the layout. Some of these components include:
- Administrative space: Office space for management to deal with administrative tasks.
- The waiting room and/or front counter(s): A space where customers can wait during maintenance is ideal. It can also function as a front counter where clients can check in and out.
- Loading docks: Sufficient space for loading vehicles with the right clearances and extra room for moving them in and out of the shop.
- Storage space: Heavy-duty machinery is a must in repair shops along with various tools and large inventory. All of these assets need proper housing in certain spaces, so storage areas are a necessity.
When it comes to space, the shop’s floor plan must consider the equipment’s size and the variations of necessary spaces. However, there is more to acknowledge than just the use of space.
Arguably, the most important design element of an auto repair shop is the workbench. A good workbench provides the space that is necessary to work on vehicles without any instances of clutter. It must have a sturdy surface that can withstand hammering and drilling without succumbing to damage.
Two essential tools that should be present on your workbench are a strong metal plate and vice. Additionally, the workbench’s surface should be made of durable and easy-to-clean material, such as hardwood or metal.
The location of a workbench should be near electrical outlets. Moreover, they must be easy to access, regardless of the type of car you are working on at the time. Remember that there should be ample space to maneuver around in. When working on a vehicle, you want to be in a comfortable position. As such, make sure that your workbench is in the right spot.
Auto repair shop design precautions
When planning the layout of an auto repair shop, there are a few common mistakes that people make. A lot of these oversights can be expensive to fix or, even worse, could lead to productivity decline. When outlining the floor plan, there are a few things to keep in mind:
- Width of the door: A vehicle fitting through the door does not necessarily mean that the working space is optimal. Make sure that the spaces have the widest door frame possible.
- Overhead space: Certain things can hinder shop productivity, including ductwork, cranes, and the height of the ceiling. To avoid such interferences, make sure the space has – if possible – a double-lofted ceiling.
- Light fixtures: Poor lighting or low-hanging fixtures can disrupt a mechanic while they work. It would be wise to install bright lighting that is also out of the mechanic’s way.
Lacking the proper shop layout can result in simple things impeding the work you do on your clients’ vehicles.
Design elements for business
Another component to consider is a space exclusively for employees and management. Including a suitable space for staff and management to work in is critical when operating an auto repair shop. Employees require a space to put their personal belongings during their shift. Likewise, management needs a space that will allow them to handle their administrative tasks. These include ordering new parts, running payroll, setting appointments, and overseeing the marketing.
An adequate auto repair shop design will do more than ensure a seamless and efficient operation. It will also reassure your customers that their vehicles are in good hands. If you are in need of design consultation services, contact our Calgary construction location. Plus, if you want to learn about building car dealerships, check out Guide to Automotive Dealership Construction.