A car lift is not the type of equipment that you buy every other day, and the wrong choice of lift can have significant cost implications.
Here are three things that a DIY auto repair enthusiast should have in mind when shopping for a car lift on a tight budget.
You can't afford to compromise on safety regardless of your budget. A cheaper lift might be poorly constructed lift, and it could easily give in to the weight of a hoisted vehicle.
Do background research on the manufacturer of the lift brand you intend to buy. Establish that their product is designed in compliance with AS 1418.9, which is the Australian standard for vehicle hoists. Also check if the manufacturer is ISO 9000 certified, which would be an indication that they observe quality management standards in their manufacturing processes.
Avoid The Low-Voltage Version
Car lifts use electric motors to raise/lower a vehicle. These motors operate using a defined voltage of electricity (usually 110v or 220v). A lift that has a 110v motor will probably have a lower purchase price than one that features a 220v motor.
Consider that mains electricity in most Australian garages is supplied at 240v. In order to use a 110v car lift, you'll need to invest in a step-down control transformer. The transformer will reduce the voltage of electricity to the required 110v before current is supplied to the lift. Add the cost of the transformer and the cost of its installation by a professional to the purchase price of the lift. You'll likely end up with a figure that's higher than the cost of buying a 220v lift.
Additionally, a lower-voltage lift will raise and lower your car(s) much slower than its high-voltage equivalent. You have no excuse not to pay for the extra cost of a high-voltage lift.
4 Post Lifts Might Not Be Worth The Extra Cost
4 post hoists have ramps that distribute the weight of a mounted vehicle across a greater surface as compared to the surface provided by the arms of a 2 post lift. This improves the stability of mounted vehicles. As such, 4 post hoists are often more expensive.
The same ramps restrict access to undercarriage components of a vehicle. For this reason, 4 post hoists are often preferred for long-term vehicle storage as opposed to regular DIY repairs.
You'll need to invest in a secondary lift mechanism that gets the vehicle off the ramps to allow for repairs on undercarriage components. This will be an additional expense.
For more information, contact Forte Lift Services or a similar company.Share
8 August 2016
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