Car Lift FAQs
Which of our Car Lifts are Made in the USA?
Our favorite question by far. Today this is the most important question you need to get answered. Why do we say this? First, we are on your side and we understand you want to spend your dollars the same way we would. Second, you want to know who is behind the lifts you are buying and where they are being made.
Most all lifts, and/or components of lifts, are coming from overseas from manufacturers you would not come close to pronouncing the names of if you could get the seller to reveal it. If you asked the question above to most distributors you will get a partial or mixed answer. They may say they are made in China but fall short of revealing who or what company is the manufacturer. Maybe they are embarrassed to say, maybe they don’t know how to pronounce the name, maybe they don’t know if they have insurance in the USA, maybe they change manufacturers a lot if they find a cheaper one, or maybe they will just say (because they sell lifts) they are the manufacturing authority and they dictate how the lift should be made and determined the best company in China to make theirs.
If you find comfort in any of that then buyer beware! By looking a little further you will gain some valuable insight. It will make the difference in getting your lift covered under warranty, the future of parts availability, the overall quality and performance, knowing the lift was tested and rated properly, how long the manufacturer has been in business and if they are insured.
Who Makes Forward Lifts? Direct Lifts? Rotary Lifts? Weaver Lifts?
Our Direct-Lift(r), Forward(r) Lift, Rotary(r) Lift and certain Weaver(r) Lift brands are manufactured by Vehicle Service Group, a wholly owned operating company of the Dover Corporation - a Fortune 500 Company based in the USA. Vehicle Service Group owns all its plants and has ISO certified manufacturing facilities, worldwide, to compete in the global market. These plants are located in Indiana, USA, China, Germany and Italy. Vehicle Service Group is the largest lift manufacturer in the world, owning Rotary(r) Lift, Direct-Lift(r), Forward(r) Lift and Revolution(r) Lift brands, among others. They enjoy over 80% market share in the US car dealer lift market and have been building their products since their founder invented the first hydraulic lift in 1925. Located in Madison, IN, their parts distribution center used state of the art automation and delivers parts at near perfect levels of accuracy. Vehicle Service Group maintains full control of design, testing, manufacturing and quality from start to finish. You simply cannot buy from a more stable and reliable company headquartered and insured in the USA.
Benefits of American Made Car Lifts
I hear a lot of mixed reviews about products made in China. How do I know the Dover products are not made of poor quality materials?
Our second favorite question because our customers are smart. Simply put, Dover is too big to not play by the rules. Yes there are rules when it comes to manufacturing lifts and rating them and testing them. There are OSHA recognized USA lift standards that are written by ANSI/ALI (American National Standards Institute and Automotive Lift Institute). Products that are manufactured to these standards can be tested by a third party (ETL) to validate the performance of the lift. When a lift passes these tests it becomes validated and certified to the current lift standard. Lifts that have been certified wear a Gold Label that can only be earned not bought. This validates the whole story, manufacturer, build of materials, proper grade, safety ratios, lifting capacity etc.
Poor grade materials will not make the cut. Steel is purchased by grade regardless of the country of origin. It is the manufacturer’s choice to purchase the proper grade of materials to meet the engineered tasks. Dover buys the proper grade materials whether the lift is to be certified or not certified. There is only one playbook and a company the size of Dover will not compromise. That is why it matters most WHO is making it rather than WHERE! Know who is making the decisions before you make yours - that is how we operate.
Purchasing a vehicle lift that is made in America comes with certain benefits that foreign goods can’t always compete with, and it also provides assurances to the heftier price tag that accompanies these products.
First, the quality of steel sourced and used on an American made lift is held to high standards and poor grade materials are not used, regardless of the country they are sourced in. With consistent testing from start to finish to ensure the product meets U.S. set standards, you can rest assured that a lift produced in the U.S. has the health and safety of purchasers in mind. Foreign made lifts might be cheaper, but you might be hard pressed to find what grade materials were used, whether they had safety testing performed, and even whether they offer replacement help or quality customer service when things go wrong. With a lift often being a larger investment, knowing that you have a team of representatives that are easy to reach in the U.S. to solve issues is also another great reason to opt for an American made product.
What Are the Different Lift Standards?
I have read other websites that state their brand of lifts are built to some exact standard. Does that mean there are different lift standards?
This is a great question. By definition, the ANSI/ALI lift standards are the only recognized standards for lifts in the USA. To further define the standard, it is not acceptable to claim that a lift “meets or exceeds” these standards. When a company loosely makes statements to this effect it should raise a question. Are they talking about the USA standards? If so, ALI would not approve of a company using this language to describe a lift that had not been tested. It is a very difficult and questionable statement to make if the potential of a lift has not been tested by ETL to the current standard. Maybe they are testing to an Asian standard?
What Do New Brand Names on Lifts Mean?
I see a lot of new brand names on lifts. Is that a sign of the times?
You bet it is. Because of the amount of importing from unknown manufacturers we have seen a lot of “new name branding” over the last several years. Rest assured, if you ask the right questions you will learn who is really behind the name. Most of the new brands you see are an attempt to cover up the manufacturers name and be private labeled with a more acceptable American name. Buyer Beware! Remember it is most important WHO is making it if you want the best performance after the sale.
Where Can I Get Replacement Parts for my Vehicle Lifts?
We carry the most common parts for 2 Post Lifts, parts for 4 Post lifts, and wear items right here at Derek Weaver Company. If we do not have the item requested in stock we are backed up by Dover’s main inventory system in Madison, Indiana. Their computerized REMSTAR parts system rivals that of many Car companies with 7 towers at a cost of over 7 million dollars. That’s impressive and it ships parts at a 99.59% accuracy rate. No other lift company in the world demonstrates this commitment.
Technical FAQs - 2 & 4-Post Lifts
What type of fluid does the lift require and does it come with the lift?
Our lift manufacturers recommend hydraulic fluid such as AW 32, 46 or other good grade Non-Detergent Hydraulic Oil SAE-10 (12 quarts). Tractor R & O also works well.
Due to shipping regulations, we are unable to ship fluids with the lifts.
What are the foundation requirements for my concrete?
The foundation has to be long enough for the vehicles to be supported, wide enough to provide support for the lift, and the concrete shall have compression strength of at least 3,000 PSI and a minimum thickness of 4 in. in order to achieve a minimum anchor embedment of 3-1/4 in. When using the standard supplied 3/4 in. x 5 1/2 in. long anchors, if the top of the anchor exceeds 2-1/4 in. above the floor grade you DO NOT have enough embedment. We do provide the anchor bolts with each lift that requires bolting down. Refer to the owner's manual for more detail on each model.
The same minimum requirements should be maintained for the Pro-Park series 4-Post lifts that do not require bolting down.
All 2 and 4 post models MUST be installed on 3000 PSI concrete only conforming to the minimum requirements shown below. New concrete must be adequately cured by at least 28 days minimum.
LIFT MODEL CONCRETE REQUIREMENT:
8,000 Pound Two Post Models 4" Min. Thickness
9,000 Pound Two Post Models 4" Min. Thickness
10,000 Pound Two Post Models 4" Min. Thickness
12,000 Pound Two Post Models 6" Min. Thickness
15,000 Pound Two Post Models 6" Min. Thickness
8,000 Pound Four Post Models 4" Min. Thickness
9,000 Pound Four Post Models 4" Min. Thickness
14,000 Pound Four Post Models 4" Min. Thickness
Is there a template for the lift to guide me in drilling the anchor bolt holes?
No, it is not recommended to drill the anchor bolt holes prior to setting the lift columns. You will use the base plate holes as a guide and template for drilling the anchor bolt holes. This will also assure that you get the columns square with each other before drilling. Drilling thru concrete (recommended) will allow the anchor to be driven thru the bottom if the threads are damaged.
What type of electrical hook up do I need to plan for?
The Pro-Park series of 4-Post lifts are standard 110 volt operation and have the standard 110 volt male plug on the power unit. The Pro-14 4-Post is 220 volt and will follow the same as the 2-Posts mentioned below.
All of the 2-Post lifts require 220V Single Phase. It is recommended that a 220 Volt, 30 Amp twist lock plug be installed in the power line just ahead of the power unit. Use wire capable of supporting a 30-amp circuit and must comply with local code. Protect each circuit with time delay fuse or circuit breaker rated at 208v-230v single phase 60 Hz 30 amp.