How To Choose The Right Aerial Lift To Get Your Job Done Right?

right aerial lift
Whether you are looking to rent a piece of aerial equipment, or looking to purchase a unit, the first thing to consider is which piece of equipment will be the right one for your job.

You want to make sure the machine you are getting will get the job done efficiently and safely.

Within the construction industry, there are multiple different types of mobile elevating work platforms (MEWPs) to choose from.

This choice may seem overwhelming if you are not familiar with all the types of equipment, but here are some questions to ask to get the correct unit:

#1: Will the work be completed indoors or outdoors?

  • If the job is being completed indoors, an electric powered MEWP would work best due to the low emissions from the unit
  • If outdoors, an engine powered aerial lift would be best due to these engines allowing for greater power. Also majority of these types of lifts are available in 4 wheel drive with rough terrain options which is a major advantage for an outdoor job. These engines are typically dual fuel (gas & propane), or diesel powered.


#2: What will the terrain be like in the working area?

  • A firm, levelled surface calls for an electric scissor lift, electric articulating or telescopic booms or a vertical mast lift.
  • Uneven, rough terrain surfaces calls for an engine powered straight or articulating boom or a rough terrain scissor lift. These units comes with the appropriate tires for uneven grounds, and are almost always equipped with the safety technology for these kinds of working conditions.


#3: Are there obstacles between the closest point the lift can be positioned and the working area?

  • If there are obstacles prohibiting the lift from being placed directly under the work site, a straight boom or an articulating boom would give you the easiest access to the working point.
  • If there are no obstacles and the aerial lift can be positioned directly under the working area, a vertical lift such as a scissor lift would be the safe choice.


#4: How high will the operator need to be to perform the work?

  • Determining the height of the job itself will then allow you to choose the right size aerial lift to complete the task at hand.


#5: What is the total weight (including the operator) that the aerial lift needs to elevate?

  • All aerial lifts have a mandated maximum platform lifting capacity. This can be found in the operator’s manual or on the manufacturer’s website.
  • You will need to determine the weight of the operators plus the weight of any additional material or equipment they may need to be using as well. This will help you narrow down the aerial lift with the most appropriate platform capacity for your job.


To further help with making the right choice, here are some of the major advantages to these aerial lifts:


Scissor Lifts

right aerial lift

These machines are a large and stable platform that can hold multiple workers and heavy loads. If your task only requires you to go straight up, this is a perfect unit. If the same applies but on an outdoor surface, the rough terrain scissor lift would be the perfect choice as well.

Articulating Boom Lifts

boom lift

These booms are perfect for high, hard to get to areas. The bendable arm allows for the boom to go “up and over” as well as “over and under”.

Telescopic Boom Lifts


These lifts reach high and far. Assuming your working area can be easily accessed from a distance, this may be the equipment for you.

Vertical Mast Lifts

Vertical Mast Lift

These lifts come push around, electric, and self-propelled. They can easily get workers up and close with their working area. These are great units because they are low maintenance and can easily fit in smaller/tighter spaces. These are good for smaller jobs.

If you are planning to buy or rent a piece of aerial equipment it is important to keep the mentioned questions and highlighted points in mind.

Torcan Lift Equipment is your most reliable source for getting the right equipment for you. With over 20 years’ experience specializing specifically in the aerial lift industry we have the knowledge and experience to support it.

With an excellent rentals and sales team, we will make sure all of your questions are answered and all of you requirements are met. Give us a call today!