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Specifying the Right Lift for the Job

Specifying the Right Lift for the Job

This is Chris Matt, Managing Editor of Print & E-Media, with Maintenance Solutions magazine. Today's tip is identifying the right lift for the job.

Most facilities present front-line technicians with a host of hard-to-access job sites for maintenance and engineering tasks. The challenge facing managers is finding the right piece of equipment to bridge the gap. Aerial work platforms, or lifts, come in an array of sizes and styles, including telehandlers, scissor lifts, telescope lifts, and boom lifts. They offer features and functions designed to address the full range of activities technicians undertake daily in and around institutional and commercial facilities.

Managers can apply several guidelines when specifying lift equipment. Telehandlers typically offer the greatest load capacity. Scissor lifts typically offer the most work-platform space. Telescope and boom lifts usually have the greatest ranges of elevation. Articulated boom lifts typically offer the greatest reach flexibility.

    In deciding which lift to select, managers need to consider six factors:
  • inside vs. outside tasks
  • transport clearances to the job, including doorways
  • surface conditions, including whether the surface is paved or unpaved, whether the terrain is level or sloped or even or rough, and if obstacles are present
  • elevation and reach to the work site
  • personnel, tools, utilities -- compressed air and electricity, for example -- and accessories for the job
  • and finally, storage space for the lift

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