Automotive lifts serve as convenient tools for vehicle servicing and repairs, providing improved visibility underneath cars for efficient part replacement or repair. Despite their utility, these lifts may experience wear and tear, diminishing efficiency and posing safety risks for operators. Regularly scheduled lift inspections and maintenance are crucial to prevent avoidable damage, ensuring the lift functions optimally and safeguarding operational safety.
In the following sections, you will discover details about the prerequisites for lift inspections, guidance on when to schedule these inspections, and valuable tips to enhance the safety of your lift, enabling you to successfully pass inspections every time.
Requirements for Auto Lift Inspections
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) does not impose federal mandates specifically for automotive lift inspections. Nevertheless, the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act, enacted in 1996, empowers government entities such as OSHA to adopt nationally recognized standards to fulfill their safety objectives. Utilizing these standards can mitigate the likelihood of infractions under OSHA’s current regulations, contributing to a safer working environment.
OSHA frequently relies on the American National Standard for Automotive Lifts Safety Requirements for Operation, Inspection, and Maintenance (ANSI/ALI ALOIM) standards, which oversee the inspection and maintenance criteria for automotive lifts in the United States. These standards undergo regular updates to uphold the safety of individuals, including workers, utilizing automotive lifts. Typically, the standards encompass the following aspects:
- Procedures for inspecting lifts
- Timelines for lift inspections conducted by qualified professionals
- Points covered during lift inspections
- Qualifications required for lift inspectors
- Responsibilities of lift owners concerning inspections
OSHA may employ the General Duty Clause to issue citations or request corrective actions for automotive lifts. This occurs when inspectors witness deficiencies in training and maintenance or the aftermath of an accident involving the lift.
How Often Should Your Lift Be Inspected?
It is advisable to have a qualified lift inspector examine your car lift at least once annually. However, additional and more frequent inspections may be necessary if mandated by the manufacturer, or required by governing bodies such as insurance providers, corporate health and safety regulations, or workers’ compensation trusts.
Conducting regular inspections on lifts enhances the safety of lift operators, minimizing the potential for accidents involving the lift. These inspections serve to verify the smooth operation of both the lift and its controls. Beyond promoting peace of mind regarding the safety of vehicles on the lift, inspections also instill confidence in operators by assuring them of their safety. Additionally, these inspections contribute to the prolonged durability of the lift, enabling the early identification and resolution of issues before they escalate, and facilitating timely maintenance or repairs.
Tips to Pass an Auto Lift Inspection
Successfully passing an automotive lift inspection involves optimizing the lift’s safety measures, and ensuring the protection of both lift operators and the machinery. Here are some safety tips to maintain your automotive lift in optimal condition:
1. Purchase lifts that are certified by the Automotive Lift Institute (ALI)
The ALI serves as one of the resources utilized by OSHA to cite lift owners. Opting for an ALI-certified lift can enhance the likelihood of passing inspections more smoothly. Acquiring such lifts provides peace of mind, as they are meticulously designed by a knowledgeable engineering staff, reinforcing the strength factors. Certified lifts adhere to stringent standards, undergoing rigorous testing for each component to ensure compliance and reliability.
Choosing a certified lift serves as a solid starting point for passing inspections. While additional safety strategies are necessary for maintaining the security of your auto lift, a certified lift offers a favorable beginning. It comes equipped with quality components and proper protection, providing a reliable foundation for ensuring safety.
2. Locate certified and qualified inspectors
To enhance the safety of your automotive lift and maximize the benefits of inspections, it is crucial to enlist the services of a qualified inspector. These specialists possess expertise in automatic lifts, enabling them to conduct thorough and accurate inspections. Additionally, many qualified inspectors furnish a label containing a serial number, date, and signature, serving as documentation indicating the date and the individual who last inspected your lift.
You can have confidence in the competence of qualified inspectors, as they are required to complete written tests, adhere to a documented quality system, and fulfill practical experience testing requirements. Qualified inspectors also commit to a code of ethics, signifying their responsibility for the safety of the lift and affirming its fitness for continued use following the inspection.
3. Provide training for lift operators
Comprehensive training for your lift operators is essential for enhancing their safety and minimizing the risk of injuries. The training program should cover various aspects, including lift maintenance, different lifting techniques, proper lowering procedures, and vehicle lifting protocols. Online training courses are also available to facilitate operator training, offering interactive scenarios for effective learning. Upon successful completion of the course, operators can take a test and receive a certification, which can be displayed as proof of their competence.
4. Establish a maintenance program and maintain comprehensive documentation
Maintaining written documentation of all lift maintenance is crucial to ensure its continued safe and reliable operation over the years. Many manufacturers provide user guides outlining the recommended maintenance schedule, serving as a valuable resource to guarantee the lift’s ongoing functionality and safety.
Establishing a maintenance program is crucial to meet the care requirements of your auto lift. During maintenance activities, it is essential to document the procedures undertaken, including replacements and any identified issues. This record serves as a valuable reference for future maintenance, ensuring a systematic approach. Regular maintenance not only prevents unwarranted damage to your lift but also contributes to extending its lifespan.
5. Perform daily inspections of the lift
In addition to routine maintenance, it is advisable to conduct a daily examination of the lift to identify potential irregularities that could escalate into significant problems. Daily checks should encompass scrutiny for issues such as leaks, cracks, corrosion, low fluid levels, or any unusual noises. Performing these brief daily checks is crucial not only for promptly addressing emerging concerns but also for facilitating more straightforward maintenance procedures. Investing a few minutes each day in these checks can significantly enhance the safety and longevity of your lift.
6. Improve visibility
Enhancing the visibility underneath your lift is a further measure to improve safety. Installing a remote-controlled light can facilitate better visibility, aiding operators in clearly observing their tasks and identifying potential safety hazards before they escalate into issues. This additional lighting feature makes it easier for operators to work efficiently and promotes a safer working environment.