Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement - 5

tor. Hiring an ALI Certified Lift Inspector
ensures that you're working with someone who has been third-party tested and
found capable of inspecting any lift. We
look at everything, including all electrical
and mechanical lift components, training
records, and lift maintenance logs.
The outside perspective ALI Certified
Lift Inspectors bring is valuable. When
technicians use lifts every day and are
focused on getting their work done, it's
easy for them to unintentionally overlook small things that might cause safety
issues. Often, we will show operators or
managers issues found during inspection
and they are amazed that they've overlooked it all day, every day, for months.

Tips for lift operators

Our team encourages technicians to get
to know their lifts by looking, listening,
and truly paying attention to the characteristics of how the lift operates. Taking
this approach will allow the operator to
report changes in the condition of the lift
to their supervisor or owner at the first
sign of any of these conditions:
* Missing or damaged warning and capacity labels. Capacity labels tell technicians at a glance the lift's rated load
capacity to help prevent overloading.
Warning labels and safety materials
are specific to each lift and should be
kept with the lift at all times.
* Damage or excessive wear of lift hoses,
wire rope, chains, electrical wires. A
hose failure can cause problems ranging
from a loss of efficiency to a catastrophic
lift failure, so any abnormalities need
to be treated immediately. Look for
obvious signs of rubbing, cracking,
or pinching on all hoses and piping.
Look for wear marks, fraying, or signs
of stretching on chains, wire ropes,
bearings, and pulleys. These items are
most prone to wear at the "bends and
the ends," so look closely anywhere
they bend around corners or pulleys,
or where they make a connection.
* Damage or excessive wear of any lift
contact points. Any time there is damage to a lift contact point, you are losing
potential "grip" on the vehicle contact
point, dramatically increasing the risk
of a vehicle shifting or sliding. Check
lift contact points, such as lifting pads,
to make sure they are free of debris,

grease, oil, and anything else that may
prevent solid contact. Make sure that
bolt-on rubber pads are secure, and
that the rubber or serrated steel isn't
torn or worn.
* Evidence of hydraulic or pneumatic
leaks. Hydraulic or pneumatic leaks
need to be dealt with as a serious issue.
Small leaks can turn into big leaks,
which can cause catastrophic failure.
Listen for any "hissing" sounds from
a pneumatic system, as this could be
an early indicator of pneumatic leaks.
Look for any evidence of oil outside
of a cylinder or on the floor, as this
confirms a hydraulic leak is present
and must be repaired.
* Cracks or loose concrete around the
floor anchor bolts. An old adage in
the lift industry is that "a lift is only
as strong as the floor it is bolted to."
Any time a crack or other abnormality is found involving the concrete,
an assessment needs to be made regarding how the lift and service bay
safety may be negatively impacted. If
it is determined that either the manufacturer's instructions or other observations demonstrate a safety concern,
appropriate action should be taken
immediately. Since some lift types put
more stress on the floor than others,
any change in the floor (cracks, loose
concrete, anchors loosening up, etc.)
should be investigated.
* It's important for lift operators to
properly use controls, restraints, or
load holding (locking) devices to avoid
dangerous situations. Load holding
devices are at the heart of lift safety -
if they are not working or being used
properly, it causes the entire load to rest
on the hydraulics, wire ropes, or chains.
It is imperative that the main controls
(lifting and lowering) return to neutral
when operators release the controls. If
a lift continues raising after the lifting
control is released, or continues moving
downward after the lowering control is
released, the lift should not be used until
inspected by a qualified lift inspector
and serviced before further use. Do not
override these controls.

Lift training

A comprehensive lift training program is
critical to exceptional service bay safety.

Lift operator training should be part of
the on-boarding process for every new
technician and should continue annually, at minimum.
A service bay safety program goes beyond the sign hanging on the wall that
says "200 days without an accident." It
means properly and continually training technicians on lifts and all equipment. It's talking about safety daily and
making sure the operators know what
to watch for and how to address potential issues.
ALI's "Lifting It Right" online lift
safety training certificate course is a
great resource on the proper use of all
types of vehicle lifts. New this year, shops
can sign up for an annual subscription
that gives them unlimited access to
the course, so it's easy to make sure
every technician - experienced or new
- is trained.
In addition to general lift training,
lift operators should be trained on the
specific lifts they will be using. Don't
assume that because a technician has
20 years of experience, they knows how
every type of lift operates. Many ALI
Certified Lift Inspectors and lift manufacturer representatives can provide individualized training. To find a local ALI
Certified Lift Inspector, visit
Training should cover lift operation
and the lift manufacturer's recommended list of safety checklists, which are
designed to help operators spot minor
issues before they compromise safety.
ALI Certified Lift Inspectors recommend that training involves the adoption
and execution of a planned lift maintenance program.
Investing in and enforcing a lift safety
program pays dividends for shops beyond keeping everyone safe. It improves
overall service bay safety, increases the
bottom line by reducing workers' compensation claims, limits lift downtime,
lowers insurance costs, and minimizes
repair costs.
Buck Gasner is operations
manager for DEKRA
Automotive North America
and serves as the associate
class representative to the
Automotive Lift Institute (ALI)
Board of Directors.
AUGUST 2019 | Vehicle Lift Guide |


Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement

Know your lift
How to choose the right lift for your shop
10 steps to promote lift safety in shops
Selecting proper two-post lift accessories
Pathway to purchase
Equipment reviews
Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement - 1
Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement - 2
Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement - Welcome
Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement - Know your lift
Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement - 5
Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement - How to choose the right lift for your shop
Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement - 10 steps to promote lift safety in shops
Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement - 8
Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement - 9
Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement - Selecting proper two-post lift accessories
Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement - Pathway to purchase
Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement - Equipment reviews
Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement - 13
Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement - 14
Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement - 15
Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement - Products
Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement - 17
Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement - 18
Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement - 19
Vehicle Lift Guide Supplement - 20