More than any other single feature, this is what makes a lift! In shocking contrast, many brands use 3/16” to 5/16” sheet metal that is put on a brake and bent to “form” their columns. Bent sheet metal is stressed sheet metal! Under load it continues to stress. Ultimately it can (and often does) crack and/or spread (unbend itself) with use. A manufacturer can’t build it better if their goal is to build it cheaper. There is only one manufacturer that we have found that goes beyond the sheet metal mentality, Mohawk Lifts.
In addition to Mohawk’s difference in steel thickness, their special “high strength” fork lift channel columns are inherently stronger than either bent sheet metal or extruded columns. All Mohawk Lifts are made of 3/4” or 1” thick rolled steel “C” shaped forklift channel columns. Considering that all car lifts are a slight takeoff from a forklift, have you ever seen a forklift made out of sheet metal? No, and you never will. Mohawk uses high-strength and high quality steel channels which are rolled at only three steel mills in the world. Mohawk steel columns come from Steel of West Virginia.
Some of Mohawks competitors say that their lifts are “overbuilt.” You may be wondering, “Do I really need all that strength? Won’t less expensive lifts work? The answer is no! If you were an NFL halfback, you’d have 300- pound linemen blocking for you. As a mechanic, why would you risk your life working under a car held up by a lift with columns built like a 98 pound weakling? Some lift companies may “rate” their lifts at the same capacities as Mohawk Lifts, but the issue isn’t capacity, its ability! Time & time again for years to come. You may be able to lift an 80-lb. bag of cement, but can you hold it? At arms length? Safely? And for how long?
Strength and solidity is what you should surround yourself with when choosing an automotive lift.