Two Post Auto Lift Installation

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Published: 26th October 2012
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One of the questions we at Redline Engineering get most often about two post auto lifts is, "How hard is it to put up?" I tell people that if you have enough mechanical aptitude to work on a car, you can put up a lift. Realistically, you're looking at a half day job and you need a friend.

To start, uncrate everything and put all your matching hardware together. Determine where you want your lift, making sure there is enough ceiling clearance before starting.

About the average suggested height minimum is 12 feet; however, lifts are available that require only 10 feet. Once this is done, pop a chalk line on the concrete to line your posts up.

If you have purchased a clear floor style lift like those found at RedlineStands, it may come with tower extensions. If so, bolt these onto the tops of the towers while the posts are still lying flat. Standing a complete tower up beats trying to carry the large and cumbersome extension up a ladder, I assure you.

Get one tower where you want it and make 100% sure the tower is plumb and true. Use a long level to get a more accurate reading. All two post lifts sold by Redline Engineering is supplied with the hardware should you need, as are most lifts sold by other retailers. Next, using a hammer drill bore through the concrete as far as you can go. You'll usually drill right through the slab into the dirt below. Now double check to make sure you have at least 4" of concrete thickness. This is mandatory! If you are installing one of Redline's lifts larger than 9,000 pounds of capacity check your manual to verify that even more concrete thickness isn't recommended. Blow all the debris from the hole and install one anchor.

Putting the anchor in is simple. After the hole is drilled and blown out, back the nut all the way off until it is flush with the top of the bolt. Hammer it in. Get it ALL the way down. Now align the second tower along the chalk line and space them the exact width apart as specified by your instructions. If installing a clear floor lift it's now time to install the overhead crossbar.


Once you've determined the accurate distance and have made sure the opposing tower is as true as the first, meaning perfectly straight up and down, you're ready to drill out the remaining other holes for the baseplates. Once they've been drilled and blown out, sink the rest of the anchors and tighten them down. They'll torque to about 150 foot pounds. Next, attach the power unit.

Moving on, run the cables and hydraulic hoses before you attach the arms. Attaching the arms will be last and for good reason. At Redline Engineering we usually tell our customers the cables should be taught, not tight. If you can pop the cable and it hums, it's too tight. To ensure the life of your new machine, sufficiently grease the inside of the towers where the sliders travel after you've checked and removed any weld slag that could grate against the plastic slider blocks. Weld slag usually isn't present, but if you find any use a chisel or angle grinder to remove it. Finally add the arms and arm locks. You'll want to use regular hydraulic fluid to fill the container on the power unit per your instructions. Raise and lower the arms 7 to 10 times to work the air out of the system while making adjustments to the cables to make sure the arms are raising together with the safety locks engaging at the same time.

Ok, put a car on the lift and set the arms to the desired location. Raise the car about a foot off the ground and rock it to make sure it is properly loaded and not off balance. Raise the car to the desired height and set it back down on the safety locks to release the pressure off of the hydraulics. Congratulations, you are now ready to get to work on the car!


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