Answers to frequently asked questions regarding car lifts

If you can’t find the answers to your questions here, call us toll-free at 1-888-711-5438 and we’ll gladly help you out!

How do I know which type of parking lift best fits my needs?

Even though most of us want to spend as little as possible, we also need to think about a number of other factors such as garage dimensions, size and weight of the vehicles to be parked, etc. The following guidelines will help point you in the right direction so you can choose something that fits your needs as well as your budget.

  • The four post parking lift is the least expensive way to go. This particular model (including the extended-height) is easy to operate, and is virtually maintenance-free. The only real disadvantage of this model is the amount of floor space it takes up.
  • The single post parking lift (MaximumOne) is the ideal parking lift for applications where there is very little garage space available. There is only one single post with a platform(s) on the side. You can order this model with a platform on both sides of the posts if you want to park four cars in a double car garage.
  • The two post parking lift is a cantilever-style two post parking lift. This rugged model was designed primarily for commercial applications and has a number of advantages. First, the cantilever style is ideal if you have to enter at an angle because it doesn’t have protruding front posts like a four post lift. The Apex TP-27 Lift also has an option to provide a fully galvanized platform which makes it ideal for harsh weather environments. The Apex TP-27 cost more than our four post lifts, but our customers tell us it’s worth every penny!
  • The Triple High Parking lift (3400 B series) was designed for commercial applications. It allows you to park three vehicles in one single parking space, and it has enough clearance between platforms to allow you to park most SUV’s. We also offer a lower-lifting version of this model, with an overall height of 16 feet as opposed to the standard of 22-1/2 feet.


What are the differences between the asymmetric, symmetric and floor pan model two post automotive lifts?

Although these models all look similar at first glance, there are some important differences.

  • The asymmetric design two post lift allows you to lift the car while moving it out and away from the two posts. This allows you to open your doors freely without the doors hitting the posts. This model is recommended if you’re going to be using it mostly for lifting cars, as opposed to trucks with a long wheelbase.
  • The symmetric design two post lift has generally has more width between the posts than the asymmetric design two post lift. This model is ideal for lifting vehicles that have a long wheelbase. This model can be used for lifting just about any standard truck or car.
  • The floor pan model two post lift is designed for applications where there is less than 12 feet of ceiling height clearance. This model is ideal for lifting both cars and trucks.

How much ceiling height is needed to park one car above the other?

The ceiling height you will need will vary depending on the height of the vehicle you want to store. The best way to measure is to add up the total height of the two vehicles being parked, and then add an additional 10 inches. For more details, click.

How safe are your lifts?

Very — all of our lifts are designed and manufactured to meet or exceed American National Standard Institute (ANSI) safety standards B 153.1 1990 for Automotive Lifts.

What if there’s a power outage?

Generally a power outage will only last a few minutes, and your lift will begin operating again as soon as the power is restored. However, if you’re concerned about an emergency where you need to get your car down immediately during a power failure, we recommend a generator that provides power for all your electrical needs.

What type of power outlet/source is needed to operate my lift?

Our residential power units use a single-phase 110V or 220V power source (a 30-amp breaker is recommended). Most residential garages already have 110V or 220V outlets already installed (most washers-and-dryers operate on 220V). Our commercial power units use a 220V/440V single or three-phase power source.

Will my lift require special hydraulic fluid to operate properly?

All lifts provided by American Custom Lifts are designed to operate using standard 10-weight, non-foaming, non-detergent hydraulic oil. This is available in virtually any automotive store.

Do I need a special type of floor or foundation to support my lift?

Just about every home or commercial foundation is plenty strong enough to support our lifts. In most applications, minimum requirements are 4″ thick concrete, 3000 psi. Some of our lifts don’t even need to be anchored down, although all the supporting base plates are pre-drilled in case you choose to anchor your lift.

Do I need a building permit to install my lift?

Permit requirements, if any, vary depending on the city and the type of lift being installed. For example, most home garage lifts do not require a permit.  Obtaining a permit is the responsibility of the person buying the lift, so please check with your local building department.

Are your lifts easy to operate?

Yes, every parking lift and automotive lift provided by American Custom Lifts has been designed in a way that’s easy for anyone to operate.

Do you offer financing?

Yes. Thanks to our business alliance with several finance companies, virtually anyone can afford an American Custom Lift!

How much do you charge for shipping/delivery?

You’ll be pleased to note that we receive substantial discounts from most major freight companies, and we pass these savings on to you. Depending on your location and the type of lift you order, shipping cost varies.

How does my lift get delivered?

Your lift will be delivered by a trucking company that services your local area. Most trucking companies used by American Custom Lifts will deliver directly to your home, business or to our recommended installer’s warehouse.

How do I unload my lift?

Lifts are heavy pieces of equipment, so be sure you have an engine hoist, forklift, or the boom on a wrecker available to help you get your lift off the truck. Or, if you use one of our professional installers, they will usually unload the lift for you. Many of them will even accept delivery at there premises, then bring the lift to your location when it is convenient for you.

How do I install my lift?

Most of our lifts are fairly easy to assemble and install, and can be installed in just a few hours with the help of a forklift or boom and a couple of friends. You will receive a complete detailed installation and operations manual with your order. You’ll be pleased to know that we also have professional installers within easy reach of virtually every town in America (as well as several international cities).

Do I need any special tools to install my four post surface mounted car lift?

Many of our customers simply use one of our professional installers, but if you’re the do-it-yourself type you’ll probably enjoy installing your own lift. Most of our four post surface mounted car lifts require only the following tools and supplies for assembly:

  • Open or boxed end wrenches: 7/16″, 1/2″, 5/16″ and 3/4″
  • Ratchet and 7/16″, 1/2″, and 3/4″ sockets
  • Crescent wrench (8″ – 12″)
  • Vice grips or lock-type pliers
  • Large punch (to align bolt holes)
  • 4 gallons of standard 10-weight, non-foaming, non-detergent hydraulic oil
  • Teflon tape for hydraulic fittings
  • Tube or tub of “axle” type grease

How much does it cost for a professional installer to install my lift?

The cost depends on the type of lift you want installed. For our most popular lifts, professional installation usually costs between $650 and $950.

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