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Car Lift Maintenance: Check it Every Day

I met a gentleman the other day that was 96 years young! He was surprisingly agile and swift on his feet. He had few wrinkles and looked really good for his age! I was really impressed and thought he wasn’t a day past 70. That got me to thinking about ‘maintenance’.  If I exercise, take care of myself, eat right and stress less…. Will that help me to age just as gracefully?

There are Eagle lifts out there that have been doing their job for decades and still run like the day they were installed. They have aged well, with the right maintenance and care.  Do you know how to maintain your lift so it will run like new for many years? Luckily, it’s easier to know how to help your lift age well…. my wrinkles, not so much!



Perhaps the most important car lift maintenance is to adjust the cables.  Over time, the cables stretch and if not adjusted, a cable can jump a pulley or cause the lift to rise unevenly.  Each cable should have about .5” of deflection (should not move more than .5”).  This is true for a two-post or four-post lift.  Adjustments are very simple to do and the steps are specific in the manual provided with your lift. Please look that over for instructions on how to adjust your cables.

Next is lubrication on your lift. Chain rollers, cable pulleys, safety latches and carriage tracks inside the towers.  We recommend white lithium grease.  You should do this weekly.

A simple walk around your car lift for a safety check is easy, yet rarely done.  Make sure there is nothing in the tracks or carriage (shop rags, tools, cardboard, etc.) that may cause the machine to bind up.  Run the lift up and down without a load and ensure the safety features are in working order.

In fact, there is an entire American National Standard outlining the safety requirements for proper vehicle lift operation, inspection and car lift maintenance. The ANSI/ALI ALOIM covers lift operator qualifications, training and responsibilities; car lift maintenance procedures, documentation and frequency; and periodic qualified lift inspection.

In addition to regular in-house inspections, the standard requires that all vehicle lifts be inspected at least annually by a “qualified lift inspector.” A lift inspection is a thorough evaluation of the operating mechanism(s), safety system(s), maintenance, structural integrity and field modifications of a particular lift in order to identify any risks which may affect the ability of that lift to operate in a safe and reliable manner. Read more on Annual Lift Inspections, Click Here.
If any parts are worn or broken, give us a call so we can get you back up and working. 1-800-535-0016CABLE INSPECTION AND MAINTENANCE

– Lift cables normally require replacement every four to five years.
– Lift cables should be replaced if you see three or more broken wires in one strand.
– Replace the cables if you see: corrosion or rusting on the wires or ends, kinking, crushed
areas, cutting, spreading, a cable core protruding, or any other abnormality.
– If any cable defects are found the lift should be shut down immediately until the defective
cable(s) have been replaced.
– Cables and other lift parts should be kept free of corrosive agents, solvents, and road
salt. If such agents are spilled or splashed on any lift component, immediately rinse and
wipe down with a clean rag.
– Spray cables every three months with Penetrating Oil and wipe down. Failure to keep
cables free of corrosive agents will lead to reduced service life, cable failure, etc. which
could result in property damage and/or personal injury.

Every. Single. DAY.

– Give the lift a quick once-over before using it. Check for any obvious leaks or defects.
Inspect cables, hoses and chains for any sign of wear.
– Verify lift is operating properly, rising smoothly and levelly and all locking mechanisms for
the arms and carriages are working.

Every. Single. WEEK.

– Lubricate all chain rollers and cable pulleys. Grease the carriage tracks inside the towers.
– Check all nuts and bolts; tighten where necessary.
– After the first week, check cable tension and adjust as necessary. Check every 6 months

Every. Single. MONTH.

– Check and lubricate all safety mechanisms; ensure they are in proper working order.
Replace any worn or defective parts.
– Check and tighten anchor bolts as necessary.
– Inspect all moving parts; replace any worn or defective parts.


5 thoughts on “Car Lift Maintenance: Check it Every Day”

    1. It sounds like your cables need to be adjusted. You can give our parts department a call and they can assist you or recommend a local installer to assist you. 800-535-0016

  1. Following proper maintenance for your car can make it last longer. Checking the tires and oil before going on a trip will make you travel smoothly and safely. All parts of your car must be checked regularly.

  2. This is good info. I purchase my lift in 2014. It was installed on. 02.05.2014. I use it about 2-3 times per quarter. I grease the runners every month as well as the cables and chains. Every quarter I take the floor plate off and lubricate the cables. Over the four years I have only adjusted the timing once. Great Lift !

    1. Hey Fred, that’s what we love to hear. So glad to hear you’re taking such good care. of your lift. Thanks for sharing.

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