How To Choose The Right Aerial Lifting Platform

Whether you’re a construction company trying to work in a confined space or you have a need to access the contents of your warehouse in a safe yet efficient manner, powered lifts provide a great solution.

But with so many different models on the market, it can be difficult to determine just which one best suits your needs.

Each of the designs has its own merits and advantages but your final decision will depend on a number of different factors. Here’s what you should take into account when choosing the right aerial lifting platform for you.

Where are you Trying to Reach?

Although you may be under the impression that all types of aerial lifting platforms work in the same way, some of better equipped to reach the greater heights whilst others offer a more comprehensive horizontal reach.

A scissor lift moves up and down and typically has the greatest platform, with the capacity to lift significant weights compared to other options. However, despite its superiority in reaching heights, a scissor life has no horizontal reach, rendering it useless if you also need to extend out to the side.

A boom lift by contrast is the most flexible of all the aerial lifting platforms, offering the capacity to move not just up and down, but also sideways, backwards and many other directions too! Different types of boom lift will have different lifting mechanism and a greater range of movement in one area or another, so make sure you check the specifications very carefully.

Are there Any Restrictions?

There may be occasions when work is needed at heights indoors; this can be particularly challenging both in terms of access and also the requirement to protect the existing floor and walls.

A spider lift has the advantage of being able to fold up very compactly, making it possible to fit it through a standard-sized doorway before its legs extend back out to create a sturdy and stable base.

The other advantage of a spider lift is that due to the design, the floor surface is protected from bearing heavy weight loads. This can be vital if the surface is delicate or easily damaged.

Spider lifts are also capable of operating within a very confined space so if you have a lifting need but don’t have sufficient space for conventional equipment to be set up, you might find this compact design provides a solution.

Working Indoors or Out?

Some types of lifting equipment are better suited to working outdoors in rough terrain while others are better fitted to use indoors.

The source of power is one consideration which can make the difference; equipment which uses an electric power source is unlikely to be able to hold enough power to work for long periods outside.

Aerial lifting equipment for use outside is better run on an energy source like diesel, propane or bi-energy.

The type of tracking that the lifting platform has will also determine the most suitable use. Those with a tracked drive system can cope with even the most demanding of terrains and can be used in areas which are difficult to access.

Two wheel drive; self-propelling machines can work outside and have the ability to cope with some degree of gradient or uneven surface. Nevertheless they won’t be able to deal with a hefty slope and faced with swampy ground may easily get stuck.

In contrast, the types of machine which offer the best access outside may be totally unsuitable for use indoors, wrecking flooring with their heavy duty tracking. Don’t automatically assume that the machinery which is the most heavy-duty will be the best for every type of lifting situation.


There are lots of different mobile lifting platforms so it’s important to do your homework in advance to make sure you get the one which will deliver the qualities you need it to, in the right place.

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