High overhead projects are often more difficult to work on than projects on the ground. Ladders are often more difficult to move around and move equipment or tools up and down. Aerial lifts are a better option than a ladder, but since there are several types, research is necessary to get the right lift for the job you are doing.
Select the Right Lift for the Job
Before you rent a lift for the job you are working on, research the different types of lifts available. Not every aerial lift is right for every situation and using the wrong one can be problematic.
A standard scissor lift moves straight up and down and works fine on flat surfaces, but is not stable enough to use on uneven surfaces. Rough terrain scissor lifts are available for uneven terrain, but not every rental company carries them.
If you need a rough terrain scissor lift, inquire about their availability before you need it. The rental company may be able to get one for you if they don't have one in the shop.
Boom lifts have an articulated arm with a platform or bucket mounted on the end of the arm. They offer a greater range of motion and are much better suited to using outside or on uneven ground.
Boom lifts make you more comfortable as you reach up and out, and the ability to rotate the lift makes boom lifts much more maneuverable than a scissor lift. If you need to be able to reposition the lift as you work, a boom lift makes that much easier.
A Safe and Stable Work Platform
Lifts provide a much more stable platform than ladders. They are broad and flat, which allows you to work comfortably and have the tools you need with you. The size of the platform varies from lift to lift so talk to the associate at the rental facility about what they can offer for the job you are doing.
Rental facility associates may have a suggestion for you that you had not considered or insight on how to make better use of the lift for the job you are doing.
Height and Weight Capacity
Aerial lifts come in many different sizes and work capacities. Check the capacity of your lift before you use the equipment so that you do not overload the lift. The platform capacity can range from 350 pounds to well over 500 pounds, depending on the model and the manufacturer.
The height of the lift is also important, but again, they differ for one machine to another. Smaller lifts may only lift the platform 30 feet in the air while large boom lifts can reach as high as 140 to 150 feet about the ground.
Safe Operating Practices
An aerial lift is not hard to operate, but if you have never had the opportunity to use one, ask the rental associate for a lesson on the operation of the lift you are renting. Once you get the lift to the site, work with the controls in an open area so that you're familiar with the controls and comfortable with how it moves before you start the job for which you rented the lift.
Cordon off the area around the lift so that people do not cross under your work area in case a tool or something you are working with falls. Cones and safety tape or bright colored rope work well to make a cordon.
You should always wear a safety belt that clips into the platform while you operate the lift. Position a spotter on the ground to help you maneuver the lift if you need to reposition yourself and to keep people out of the work area.
At Ever-Joy Rent All Corp., we have aerial lifts to help you reach those places that are just too high otherwise. Come by and see us and check out our selection of lifts today.