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The only constant – in every industry – is change. Dealers and other fleet service shops are facing the increasing shift towards electric fleet vehicles. If enough truck dealers are slow to establish themselves, “this can slow down the rollout or lead to a different service model, e. B. through third parties or national service chains, ”said Mike Roeth, executive director of the North American Council for Freight Efficiency.
Tyler Robertson, CEO of Diesel Laptops, which provides diagnostic software and hardware, said the transition was an exciting opportunity for his company and independent repair shops.
He said his business has been approached by more than one company that makes electric trucks – more startup situations compared to the traditional OEMs. "They're basically saying," We need a great support network of people who are trained and knowledgeable to fix our trucks on their way across the country, "noted Robertson." They need to be trained on high voltages, the right diagnostic tools. "
Meanwhile, Thomas Healy, founder and CEO of Hyliion Corp., a now publicly traded startup truck maker, suggested that maintaining the components critical to electric vehicles might be more modular than doing in-house repairs – for example at Hyliion Hypertruck ERX -Class 8 model that uses natural gas to charge the batteries with a generator and regenerative braking.
"A few years ago we switched our model to batteries that are all fully sealed and not serviced on site," he said. “If there's a battery problem, do a full battery pack change, a component change. They don't try to fix parts, they just replace them. Then we'll send it to headquarters here in Texas and fix it. "
He believes the entire industry will develop that way. When an inverter fails, you won't ask a technician at a service center to open it up, look at the circuit boards and try to fix it, Healy said. Replacing parts, he added, is something technicians already know how to do.
"We just need to educate them instead of changing an air filter. Now you will be changing an inverter and there will be two plugs on it, a high voltage and a low voltage plug." Healy said. "Then you will have nuts and bolts holding it on rubber washers, rubber grommets."
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