Your Guide to Buying a Scissor Lift Table

Scissor lift tables and trolleys are the perfect tool for when you need to lift or move heavy or oversized items around your site. There are a few different things to think about when you are reviewing scissor lift tables and trolleys for your business, so we’ve written this quick guide to help you out.

What is a scissor lift table?

A scissor lift table is a flat platform mounted on a scissor-like lifting device. They are widely used in warehouses, garages, manufacturing and other industrial environments.

What are the options?

First, you need to decide if you want a fixed-in-place scissor lift table or you’d like the freedom of being able to move it around easily. Most businesses will benefit more from a trolley-style scissor lift: they’re mounted on castors or wheels to make them relatively easy to manoeuvre and position where you want them, but for loading bay work or at the end of production lines a static model might be suitable.

Secondly, you need to find out what kind of load capacity you need. Capacities range from 100kg up to 4000kg, so there should be a scissor lift available that suits most weight requirements, but obviously the heavier capacity models cost more.

You’ll also need to decide how you want your lift to work – the common choice is between a pump-based hydraulic lift (either foot or hand operated) or an electrically powered lift. Typically, once you get up to thousands of kilograms of lift capacity, you’ll be looking at electrical units, whereas smaller, portable models will be manually operated.

Next is the size. The platform size determines what items you can safely lift – you should try to avoid your items overhanging the platform if you can help it, because if the weight is not perfectly centred you could end up with a dangerous tipping of the platform. Make sure that the platform surface you choose has sufficient space to comfortably fit the type of item you will be lifting. For really large loads, look at double horizontal scissor lifts – they have two sets of scissors adjacent to each other that lift simultaneously and can support a much larger platform.

Height is the last main choice. If you need a high lift height consider a double vertical scissors option.

Are they safe to use?

Modern scissor lifts are packed with safety features (or at least, the good-quality ones are), including overload protection (for electrical models), dead man’s switches, hose burst valves, mechanical locks (for maintenance and repair work) and slowed lowering.

Look out for CE marking and European Standard EN1570-1 classifications to be sure of the quality and safety of the scissor lift that you are buying.


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