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Z-man's Avatar
 
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Garage experts - questions about installing a lift

Quick clearance questions about installing a lift in a garage:

- How much height is needed from the garage floor to the ceilings?

- What about clearance from the overhead garage doors?

- What type of lift would be best for storing a car (say a track Porsche) above a daily driver? Four-post? Two-post?

- What else do I need to consider?

This is a bad picture, but this should is the space I'm thinking about:



Thanks,
-Z-man.
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Old 06-01-2014, 12:36 PM
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10'-6 is minimal.

I have both, actually prefer the 4 post for most work, and jack off of the ramps. Most jobs are easier on my back this way.

4 post is an easier install, can sit on top of slab. Also easier to store a car, just drive it on, remove ramps, and press a button.

Looks like the garage door tracks are going to be in the way to open the door when a car is on lift. A 'decent' garage door contractor can replace with 'High tracks'

Both of mine are from Eagle Equipment.

Last edited by dad911; 06-01-2014 at 12:47 PM..
Old 06-01-2014, 12:45 PM
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Simple... Take the height of the car from the ceiling... Measure what is left. Is that shorter than you? Then too short. If you can't at least walk under the car, then it isn't tall enough? Can you imagine trying to work overhead hunched over or squatting?

Your alternative is a good rolling stool and sitting down all the time. With low ceiling heights I like low-rise lifts with floor plates... You can get the car RIGHT up to the ceiling. Ensure it has a height limit switch that's adjustable so you don't put the car through the ceiling.
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Old 06-01-2014, 01:11 PM
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I'm actually more interested in storing three cars in a oversized (and tall-ceiling) garage than I am working on a car on a lift, per-say. A lift in a garage won't extend the footprint of a home like the addition of a third car garage. Increase in footprint = more property tax! And in NJ, it is already highway robbery!!

-Z
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Old 06-01-2014, 01:52 PM
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Then 4 post is the way to go. You are going to need to move the openers, and probably the tracks/springs.

In fact, those springs look crusty, can't tell if there is a safety cable through them or not, but if you have the budget after the purchase have someone raise the tracks and change over to torsion springs.
Old 06-01-2014, 02:58 PM
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Thanks for the input guys! For the record, that's not my garage... yet...
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Old 06-01-2014, 05:34 PM
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It's not real terrible to sit on a stool with casters if you can't get full standing height.
Old 06-01-2014, 05:40 PM
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I just got a lift installed a week ago, so Im up on the considerations for an install.


- What about clearance from the overhead garage doors?

You can get a wall mount door motor and the tracks can be raised to get the door closer to the cieling. Its about $7-800 in parts plus $2-300 for install.

- What type of lift would be best for storing a car (say a track Porsche) above a daily driver? Four-post? Two-post?

Sounds like you need a 4 post

- What else do I need to consider?

The footprint size of a 4 post is a lot bigger than you would first think. They are usualy very long and just under 12' wide, plus the ramps that extend to drive onto them. Im not sure which bay you are thinking about using, but get some real specs of various lifts and see what you can really do.

Also you need a power source. Some are 110v some are 220v. Electric normaly drops from the cieling for a lift, but could come from an adjacent wall. You dont want to run a big extension cord.

Most lifts will raise to a height of 6'. Add your car height and you can calculate how high you can go or not go.


.

Last edited by 911_Dude; 06-02-2014 at 08:42 AM..
Old 06-02-2014, 03:51 AM
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My Greg Smith has removable ramps and uses 110V. Since I use it 95% for storage it works just fine.

You will need to raise your garage door tracks to the ceiling and install a side mout opener as has been mentioned. See the thread on the Liftmaster, I really the one i had in my previous house and when the ones in my current house need to be replaced that is what I will be using.

These are from my previous house. Currently I have a three car garage with very high ceilings and the lift is installed on the single bay side.








I can take meassurements if you would like.

Bill
Old 06-02-2014, 07:48 AM
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Bill, what is the height of your garage, floor to ceiling?
Old 06-02-2014, 07:58 AM
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Z my current garage is about 10'6" and I have the lift on the second highest safety stop.

Those pictures are my ex-wives house now, but I can get you a ceiling measurement if you would like. I know it was lower that my current house and there was beam right in the way.

Bill
Old 06-02-2014, 08:24 AM
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it looks like there isn't enough room on the far bay for a 4-post lift. the end of the door basically lines up with the concrete riser, leaving no space for the lift's posts. is there more side room on the near bay?

i have 11' ceilings and the 911 fits on top with the lift at the highest position, leaving approximately 69" below the runways. where are you in nj?
Old 06-02-2014, 09:39 AM
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That is beautiful. What do these cost?


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Old 06-02-2014, 05:34 PM
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I have a low ceiling but still my midrise lift gets my 944 high enough to work on it off a stool. Beats jack stands!


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Old 06-02-2014, 06:53 PM
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porsche4life - your solution works great for wrenching on a car, but not so great for storing two cars in one bay, which would be the main purpose of the lift...

-Z
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Old 06-02-2014, 07:07 PM
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Bendpak sells a few 4 post lifts in a narrow width, ~100". For comparison their standard width 4 post is ~110" wide. For comparison a Greg Smith Atlas is 114" wide.
Old 06-02-2014, 07:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by froggert View Post
where are you in nj?
North Jersey - Passaic County.
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Old 06-03-2014, 05:33 AM
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If you ever feel like taking a drive down to the Princeton area, you're welcome to check out my lift and how it works. I have a direct lift 4-post.


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Old 06-03-2014, 06:30 PM
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Here are some pics I saved cause I wanted to fix the clearance issue.. At the end I never had to because I cut a crowbar in 1" x 4 that I wedged on the lifts teeth and that made enough clearance for the car to park under the lift (barely, like .5" from touching the roof.

If you don't have 12' is very-very tight.. next garage I build will not make the same mistake


This is for a Viper but you'll get the idea













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Old 06-03-2014, 07:13 PM
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