Car Lift Tips

Residential areas often lack adequate parking space for vehicle owners, especially those who have more than one or two cars. In such a case, having to leave your car on the road or in another place where it is exposed to weather conditions or accidental scratches and dents is a big disadvantage. A car lift provides you more parking spaces without the burden of building extra parking bays and access ramps. People who like to or need to do repair work on their vehicles can easily access the underside of their automobile using a car lift. It saves you the hassle of lying under the car, which is risky and gets you dirty, too.

What Is a Car Lift?

Man fixing the underneath of a car

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A car lift or a forklift as some of them are also known, is mechanized automobile lifting equipment. This technology is used to lift and lower cars or shift them from one height to another, even without an occupant.

Most car lifts are hydraulic and work on the Pascal principle. Car lifts have hydraulic components, electronic parts to manage the elevator, and various safety vaults for risk-free movement of the vehicle.

There are numerous types of car lifts available, depending on your requirements, budget and car weight.

Requirement

Parking

Any house or residential area generally offers one car parking space per owner, but often the number of vehicles is greater than the space available for them. In such a case, vertical arking is convenient and can hold more cars in the limited space that you have.

If you have more than one vehicle and no place to park it in your garage, you often look for off-site parking. But, it is difficult to keep an eye on your car and ensure no damage comes to it. With a car lift, you can park two cars, one over the other, in the same garage, provided it has enough roof height. Purchasing a car lift is an easier solution than constructing a new garage or building outdoor parking spaces.

Repair work

People who like to tinker with their vehicles or prefer to do their own repair work can get better access to the underside of their cars using hydraulic lifts. It will save you from lying on the floor, rolling under your car and reaching out for tools that have been left far out of your reach.

​Uses

1. More Parking Area

2. No Need for Off-site Parking

3. Protection from Weather and Everyday Damage 

What Are Some Types of Car Lifts?

Woman in a red and green uniform fixing a car

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Two Post Lift

Two post lifts are the easiest hydraulic lifts to use. Just drive your car in and hoist it up. These are cheaper than the four post lifts. They come in two types- symmetric and asymmetric lifts. The former has a risk of doors getting a dent if they touch the posts while being opened. The latter has addressed this issue by having posts that are rotated to thirty-degree angles of each other while the front arms are shorter than the back ones. This helps balance the weight of the car and also prevents denting to doors. Two post lifts need to be bolted to the floor and cannot be moved around.

Four Post Lift

Four post lifts are common in the automobile repair industry. They are sturdier and safer than two post lifts due to the additional support provided by four posts. Many of these do not need to be anchored to the floor and so are a popular choice for homeowners as they can be moved from one place to the other. Manufacturers can provide you with casters that can be fitted to the bottom of the lift in order to move it around.

Scissor Lift

Scissor lifts raise vehicles using a mechanism that folds up or down like an accordion. These come in a large variety of size and height for different personal and professional requirements

Portable Automotive Lifts

Portable lifts give you the option of packing and storing the lift away when not in use. This saves space that is otherwise taken up by a lift that is installed at a particular location permanently. But, keep in mind that they have a limited lift capacity and cannot be used to hoist heavy vehicles.

Column Lifts

These wheel engaging lifts are heavy duty lifts and are used in the automobile manufacturing and repairing industry.

Alignment Auto Lifts

This lift has a runway which the vehicle must be driven onto. It has the possibility to undertake alignment services due to its special features. This is also known as a “wheel engaging lift.” The runway has turn-and-slip plates built onto it so the wheels can be turned without any resistance. These are indispensable when it comes to repair work on automobiles.

​Public Parking Lifts

These lifts only serve to park vehicles and not for any repair work underneath cars. They are smaller than four post lifts and are widely used at shopping malls, hotels, or cinemas. Public parking lifts can provide double or even triple stacking options in which three cars can be parked one above the other. They are mechanically operated and have automatically engaging spring actuated locks for safety.

What to Consider before Purchasing a Car Lift

Photo of a car wheel and a red car lift

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There are multiple options you can choose from, depending on your needs.

Purpose

Availability of Space

Ceiling Height

Vehicle Weight

Price of the Car Lift

Safety Features

Car Lift Installation and Safety

​Conclusion

Think about your car lift as a long-term investment. It must serve your purpose, last long, and ensure the absolute safety of your vehicle and the people involved in operating and using it. So, check whether it meets all the standard regulations and has safety features. Don't compromise on quality or opt for cheaper equipment.

Understand your requirements and carefully choose the right car lift that will make your work easier.