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Don’t wait until it’s too late, know your automotive lift!

Much is said about what type of lubrication to use on an automotive lift and which parts to use it on, You may get a different opinion depending on who you talk to.Most manufactures of automotive lifts are in a global market, which means that the lift you are working with in our climate will also be used in a less severe climate such as that of California or Florida.

Common sense would dictate that there would be a different maintenance procedure for lifts in our climate. In my opinion, with 13 years experience servicing and installing lifts, any type of oil or grease is better than none, unless the manufacturer states certain parts are not to be lubricated. 

The only time when grease or oil can become a problem is when there is a build up of old grease which will trap dirt and other foreign objects into the lift parts. A good cleaning with brake cleaner or other substance and compressed air before relubricating the parts will correct this problem. Remember to wear safety glasses in case of splashback when cleaning the parts. You should also record this activity in the logbook when this maintenance procedure is completed. 

Arm pad slippage is a very dangerous situation to be in for technicians. It is a mistaken belief that, as an example, a 9000lb lift will raise a 9000lb vehicle safely. Automotive lifts are designed to have a rating of 9000 lbs divided equally between the 4 arms, 2250 lbs / arm. If the vehicle is not positioned properly you can still overload a lift by having too much of the vehicle weight on one arm. This type of stress can cause an arm to slip from its position and damage or injury follows. 

The incorrect positioning of the arm pads and incorrect arm pad adaptors being used also can cause slippage. When raised, a vehicle should be level from front-to-back and left-to-right as much as possible.  Safe and proper operation of any type of equipment is the mark of a skilled tradesperson.   

Much, much more in the print addition of Auto Atlantic.
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