Lift safety starts with buying a lift that’s been third-party tested and certified to meet industry design, construction and performance standards, but it doesn’t stop there. The lift also must be properly installed, maintained and inspected, and all operators have to be trained on how to use it.
The American National Safety Standard covering vehicle lift operation, inspection and maintenance, ANSI/ALI ALOIM:2020, requires that a lift owner or employer utilize a qualified lift inspector to inspect all lifts at least annually “in order to ensure reliability and the continued safe operation of the lift.” This requirement applies to any car lifts, truck lifts or other vehicle lifts installed at a location, regardless of type, age or manufacturer. Health and safety officials are well aware of this requirement, and regularly check for proof of annual lift inspections and operator training during their site visits.
A proper lift inspection includes examination of the lift’s structural, mechanical, hydraulic, air and electrical systems and components. The inspector should check all the inspection points required by the lift manufacturer and ANSI/ALI ALOIM: 2020. Depending on the lift, this may include up to 120 points of inspection. The inspector should also review lift labels, safety materials and documentation, including instructions, vehicle lifting information and training logs.
Proper lift inspections take time. The lift inspector should raise and lower the lift with a vehicle on it to ensure the lowering speed is compliant and to observe lift function when it’s stopped in a raised position. The lift inspector should also check all controls and verify that they automatically return to the neutral or “off” position when released.
At the conclusion of the inspection, the inspector should provide a written record of all observations and findings for every inspection point, as well as any adjustments made or parts replaced. The lift owner should keep all inspection certificates on file.
Annual lift inspections help provide peace of mind that a professional has verified the lift you or your technicians are working under complies with all required inspection points, has been maintained in a reasonable and safe manner, and has available the supporting documents provided by the lift manufacturer. They also help protect against potential workplace safety violations and fines.
Unless you are an expert on the inner workings of a vehicle lift, it can be challenging to know if you’re getting your money’s worth when you hire someone to perform a lift inspection. To make it easier for lift owners to confirm the inspections they receive are complete, ALI developed the Check360™ Certified Lift Inspection. Check360 lift inspections are backed by ALI as meeting all the requirements of ANSI/ALI ALOIM:2020. Check360 Certified Lift Inspections are available exclusively from ALI Certified Lift Inspectors.