VOLUME XIII,  ISSUE 2 - MAY- JUNE,  2018

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Tech Stuff

Install a Bendpak Lift in Your Garage: Four-Post and Two-Post

Get ‘er Up

Text and photos by Chris Holley

While working on your prized ride, have you ever found yourself exclaiming in a point of frustration, “Someday, I am going to get a lift in this garage!” Having the ability to perform routine maintenance, such as an oil change or a tire rotation, without having to drag out a floor jack and jack stands would be a welcome change. After jacking the car mere inches off the floor, there is the torment of lying flat on your back or kneeling beside the car to perform the various services to the car. The exasperation of not being able to get your car high enough off the floor to install headers or slip in a new transmission could be minimized with just a single lift in the garage. With more and more companies becoming involved in vehicle lift sales to the public and the corresponding drop in prices, the dream of having a vehicle lift in your garage is becoming more of a reality with each passing year. An opportunity recently came up where we could install a lift in a garage, and without hesitation, we jumped at the opportunity to find a lift that met our needs.

 

The first thing we did was search the internet for vehicle lift providers in our area. We quickly found five reputable lift providers. Each lift provider had similar but specific manufacturer requirements for their lifts. All of the manufacturers provided dimensions of their lifts, and most provided some type of “home lift installation guide” to help with the decision-making process. Some considerations to contemplate were the electrical requirements (110-volt 25-amp or 220-volt 30-amp), ceiling height of the building, heat, ventilation, air condition (HVAC) ducting clearance, concrete floor thickness and density, garage door clearance (with garage door open), garage door opener clearance, garage entry access to the lift, and lastly, the owner’s lift usage expectations.

 

After we spoke with representatives of each company and took time to visit showrooms and dealerships that use the various brands and types of lifts we were considering, we narrowed the selection down to two companies. After weeks of working through the cost of the lift, the additional delivery and installation costs, and our tight window for the installation, we selected Bendpak to provide our lift. We now had a brand of lift, but we still were torn on the exact type of lift that would fit our needs.

A four-post lift would offer a great storage platform, but we could perform many tasks on that type of lift beside vehicle storage on and under the lift. However, a two-post lift would provide all the clearance we needed to perform any task, and it would take up less floor space, but it would not provide the best stacked vehicle storage like the four-post lift. After considering each lift, we were still deadlocked on which one to install. Luckily, we had a building that could be fitted to house more than one lift, and we had saved enough currency for such an opportunity, so we purchased one of each lift. Each lift provided specific benefits that offset any drawbacks of the other.

 

With our decision finally made, we went through the options and ordered the two lifts. The first lift we ordered was a two-post asymmetrical design (part no. XPR-10AS-LP) with an adjustable installed width, screw pads, a 10,000-lb. capacity, and Bendpak’s Low-Pro Arms (for low ground clearance vehicles). The only accessory we added for the two-post lift was four optional 60-millimeter frame cradle pads to lift full-frame vehicles. The basic two-post lift cost $2985 and an additional $200 was added for the frame cradle pads for a total cost of $3185.

 

The four-post lift (part no. HD-9XW) we ordered was a 9,000-lb. capacity lift that was an extended height and extended length design. It cost $3035 for the basic design. We added options, which included two rolling bridge jacks, a caster kit (allowing the four-post lift to be mobile), and a pair of plastic drip trays. The additions brought the cost of the four-post lift to $5640. The pair of bridge jacks, while expensive, would allow us to lift the vehicle off the lift runways, so the wheels can be removed if necessary. The caster kit provided the option of moving the four-post lift when we needed, and the drip pans would protect any vehicle that was stored underneath a vehicle on the lift from any arrant drips.

 

During the ordering process, we were given the opportunity to have the lifts shipped to a local freight terminal with a loading dock or to have it shipped to a Bendpak-approved installer. The local terminal was not the best option as the lift components are cumbersome and heavy, and although our Ram and trailer could have handled the load, once on site, we did not have enough manpower or equipment to move the lift components or experience in erecting and assembling the lifts. We, instead, elected to have the lifts sent to AE Technologies of Harveys Lake, PA. The owner and president of AE Technologies, Burkhard “Burk” von Schmeling, and his crew would handle the delivery to our site and professionally install both of the lifts. The plan was to install a lift per day, so the installation was going to be a two-day event.  

 

To see the installation of the Four-Post Lift click here.

 

To see the installation of the Two-Post Lift click here.

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