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smartlift-2_installPlanning a shop expansion is an exciting time. You’ve worked hard to get to this point, and seeing your business move to the next level is rewarding. Take a few moments to enjoy that, but also know that you’ll need to focus a lot of energy on this transition. You’re setting the stage for the next chapter, and you’ll want to make sure everything is just right. Set yourself up for success by avoiding some common pitfalls.

1. Floor Fails

Getting the floor layout for your expansion right is paramount. And there’s a lot to consider. It might be tempting to just add a few bays to one side and leave everything else as-is, but it’s probably not that simple. Or it shouldn’t be if you want to get the most out of your renovation. Now’s the time to look at your whole setup. Is there unused space you can take advantage of? Or maybe there’s a bay that’s always been difficult to access. This is your chance to remedy those issues.

And with all this hoist moving, don’t overlook the condition of the existing floor. If your concrete is already in need of repair, these shifts can cause more damage. In the end, the changes will likely be worth it, but don’t forget about the extra expense you’ll likely incur.

2. Ceiling Considerations

The No. 1 miss here? Opting for ceilings that are too low. High-roof vans are increasing in popularity, and it’s smart to make plans to accommodate them. They commonly require an 18-foot ceiling, and you’ll want to make sure you have the right auto shop equipment to handle them, too. For example the ShockwaveTM SPO12-SW is available in an extended-height option that adds three feet of space at the top. (For more on these types of vehicles, see “Your Answer To Servicing High-Roof Commercial Vans.)

3. Power Problems 

Expanding your shop could mean expanding your power needs, too. Adding lifts and other equipment could put some serious stress on your existing system. Don’t assume you can make do with what you have. Take note of the power requirements for your new lifts. Battery-powered units like our Shockwave lifts can be plugged into a standard outlet, but that’s not the case with all lifts. Plan for the added cost of enhancing your power capabilities or choose lifts that fit in with your existing system.

4. The DIY Trap

RAI_logoThe biggest mistake you could make in planning an expansion is thinking you have to go it alone. We have a huge network of RAIs (Rotary Authorized Installers) who have plenty of experience planning new shops and expansions, and they’re happing to help you. Consulting an RAI is one of the best ways to avoid the pitfalls described above. They can come into your shop, do a full assessment and help you with the layout. That one-on-one service is incredibly valuable.

 Plus the after-sale support of our Rotary distributor and RAI network is priceless. You truly don’t have to do it yourself – before or after your renovation. And that partnership will help your expansion be a resounding success instead of a fail.

 Ready to get started? Our Rotary Authorized Installer and Service Locator can help.