For a professional and competitive automotive shop or a garage, having car lifts is one of the basic investments to be made. The boost in the automotive sector is now making consumers have their cars professionally repaired and serviced rather than opt for a new one. This demand is spurring garages, auto body shops, car dealerships and such businesses to invest in the most reliable car lifting equipment that will take their customers’ cars up and down floors reliably and fast, thus saving time the car is kept in the garage. The speed, efficiency, convenience and safety that a premium class car lift affords can never be understated, so it’s not surprising that automotive shops are installing them.
The market today is flooded with all kinds of car lifts, so here’s a guide to finding the best car lifts and their safety features, among other information.
Kinds of car lifting equipment available today: Auto lifts are built to in several styles, but by and large they are broadly classified as wheel-centric car lifts and frame-centric car lifts. However, the most widely used of all car lifts from these two broad categories are four-post elevators that belong to the former category and the two-post elevators that belong to the latter category. Many of these are created by SEFAC heavy duty lifts, which ship their hydraulic systems around the world. Few people are familiar with the specialty lifts which comprise mobile, parking, portable and scissor lifts and those set on the ground.
Let’s take a closer look at some of them:
Four-Post Auto Elevators: These lifts present a picture of versatility related to lifting heavy cars. These car lifts are capable of carrying higher loads as compared to their two-post counterparts due to the presence of the extra support columns. Their method of stacked parking whereby drivers drive until they find parking space is so characteristic of wheel-centric lifts, that it makes them very user-friendly.
Four-post lifts are also available in small capacities that could be made portable by using an extra caster package that’s often optional. The four-post car lift is so designed that it has four columns that make it extremely strong so that two vehicles can be parked even if space only for one is available. If maximum storage is your chief concern, you will do well to go with a four-post car lift.
Two-Post Auto Elevators: These are the most widely used type of frame-centric car elevators that professional automotive shops use. They are defined by their two extremely strong posts and stabilization arms for extra support with which these car lifts can carry a large number of cars at an easy-to-manage height for car technicians. Owing to its two posts, this car lift is naturally far cheaper than its four-post counterpart. Another good reason to invest in it is for being space-saving for its comprehensive and unhindered access to the car wheels.
Scissor Auto Elevators: The term ‘scissor auto elevators’ take under its purview all those car lifts that increase their loads with ever-increasing mechanisms below the runways. There is a range of heights and capacities of scissor lifts that benefit professional auto shops.
Low-Rise Auto Elevators: Low-rise car lifts can go three feet high, whereas mid-rise auto lifts go as high as 36″-48″. Fully-risen scissor lifts go much higher than middle-rise car lifts. Scissor car lifts can also grow vastly in the categories of higher weight. Among the heaviest car lifts are the parallelogram style scissor lifts.
Portable Auto Elevators: Auto shops or garages that are low on space would consider a car elevator. A workable option for such garages is the portable car lift. Often, four-post auto elevators on wheels can take the form of a portable auto elevator.
A word of caution where portable auto elevators are concerned: Being small, it would be very difficult to carry larger and bulkier vehicles, so garage owners would do well to ensure that the auto elevator in question can, in fact, carry the capacity of vehicles you’re considering hoisting up.
Set-in-the-ground Auto Elevators: With these auto elevators, you can hide your auto elevator within the garage floor when not in use. These car lifts are styled in the elevator form or the scissor lift type. They are perfect to keep the ground uncluttered. In-ground car lifts, just like scissor lifts, can fall within the frame-engaging category or wheel-centric, based on their specific design.
Alignment Auto Elevators: These car lifts belong to an elite class of auto hoisting equipment because they have certain extra features which enable it to carry out alignment services on cars and trucks. These auto elevators can belong to any auto elevators mentioned above if the tires of and trucks are on a runway. On such runways, there are special slip plates and turn plates built in so that the wheels turn easily without offering any resistance.
These are the basic kinds of auto elevators that auto garage owners would need to look at to stay competitive.