Questions to Ask When Wanting to Hire Access Equipment

About Me
The Big Build: How to Use Heavy Construction Equipment

My name is Jerry, and I run a small construction company in Perth. My team normally completes relatively small jobs such as plastering walls, repairing electrical systems and constructing patios. However, one day a big client got in touch to say they wanted me to help them construct a large apartment building. I have never taken on such a big job before, but I thought it was a good chance to grow my business and gain some new skills. A friend who has completed large scale jobs before advised me on how I should hire the people and heavy construction equipment needed for the job. I learnt a lot from him, and my company has since completed several more big construction jobs. I have decided to start this blog to advise others how to hire and maintain heavy equipment.

Questions to Ask When Wanting to Hire Access Equipment

28 December 2016
 Categories: , Blog

Hiring or renting access equipment can allow a contractor to work safely at elevated heights, without having to actually buy and then maintain that equipment; hiring equipment also lets you choose different pieces for different uses and different jobsites, giving you the variety you need for the work at hand. When you are ready to hire or rent access equipment, note a few questions to ask so you're sure you get the right piece and know that it will work safely for you.

Ask if the lift will work in your expected weather

Some lifts work with hydraulics, and these can allow for a very easy lifting motion; hydraulics also mean that you don't need to worry about filling an engine with petrol or running down the battery of an electric lift. However, hydraulic lifts might get jammed in very cold or very damp weather, as the cold and humidity can both interfere with the air pressure needed to create the hydraulic lifting motion.

Also, an electric lift might not be good in very damp weather, as that dampness can interfere with the operation of the electrical wires. If you'll be using your access equipment in any type of extreme weather conditions, always ask if it's the best choice or if something else would be more reliable.

Ask about the clearance needed

Getting a lift with a knuckle, meaning an extra hinge in the arm of the lift, can allow you to be lifted up and then also forward, which can be needed for when there are obstacles in the way of your work. These lifts might need extra clearance for that arm to work. Scissor lifts will lift you straight up, but they too may need added clearance for the cab of the equipment, and may not easily fit around corners and in tight spaces. Always ask about clearance needed if you'll be working anywhere other than in an open, outdoor area.

Know the difference between personnel lifts and equipment lifts

If you need to carry any equipment with you when reaching elevated heights, you need to ensure you get a lift that will manage that added weight, and that has a solid floor that won't allow tools and other pieces to fall through. Some access equipment may have a slotted floor that is good for ventilation but which isn't meant for lifting tools or heavy buckets of equipment. Always ask if you need a lift for your equipment other than just for personnel.