Best Car Lifts – Buyer’s Guide

Best Car Lifts

Car lifts are the wave of the future for car enthusiasts. If you’ve ever struggled to get any work done on the floor of your garage, then you’ve probably lusted after the convenience of a car lift.

Automotive businesses have a good sense of what consists of a top-of-the-line lift. But it’s harder when you’re trying to buy a car lift for home. And as the world changes, more and more people are looking to do some vehicle maintenance at home, and car lifts will make difficult jobs easier and faster.

For home mechanics that may want to any job from restoring an old car through to regular maintenance like oil changes, this buyer’s guide is for you. Here, you will learn about six different car lifts that are available today and read a detailed explanation of the specs and safety features of each lift. Take some time to look at these options before buying a car lift.


Best Car Lifts of 2020

ProductTypeDimensionsLifting HeightCapacity, lbsPower sourceWeight, lbs
TRIUMPH NTO-9 (Editor's Choice)TRIUMPH NT-9 Two Post Floor Plate Lift2 post car liftHeight 145 in; Width Between Posts 133"72 in9000Motor 3 Horse Power Voltage 220V1300Check Price
TRIUMPH NSS-8TRIUMPH NSS-8 4 Post Storage Service Lift4 post car liftLength 175 in; Height 84 in; Overall Drive Through Width 93 in67 in8000110V Motor1570Check Price
QuickJack BL-7000SLXQuickJack BendPak BL-7000SLX-AC Car LiftCar liftLength 72.5 in; Height 3.5 in60 in7000110V Motor-Check Price

1. TRIUMPH NTO-9A – Top Rated 2 Post Car Lift for Home Garage

The Triumph NT-9 is versatile and can be used for multiple vehicles just by changing the three-stage front arms.

High Lifting Capacity

The Triumph NT-9 has a lifting capacity of 9,000 pounds with 111 inches in height and 132 inches in width. It can lift its load as high as 72 inches and low as 4.5 inches. The space between the two posts is 106 inches in length. The lift is portable but won’t fold into a trunk of a car. But you can use the bed of a truck.

Sadly, this lifting system doesn’t have a safety shutoff switch. On the subject of safety, you should put the two posts in four inches of concrete for better stability.


We highly recommend the Triumph NT-9 for those who are mechanically inclined. It comes with floor mounting hardware for extra sturdiness. The NT-9 three horsepower motor’s lifting time is only 40 seconds, and it definitely speeds up vehicle maintenance. For the price and the capacity of this lift, you will be astonished by how quick you can get to working on maintaining your car.


Can handle 9,000 pounds of capacity
Easily assembled
Lifts your car in only 40 seconds
It is solid and sturdy


No electric safety shutoff
No folding mechanism
TRIUMPH NT-9 Two Post Lift

2. QuickJack BL-5000SLX – Great Auto Lift for Suspension Work

The lift allows the center of the undercarriage to be open for exhaust work and for the tires free to work on the suspension or brake system.

Plenty of Ground Clearance

The BL-5000SLX can lift up to 5000 pounds and raise a vehicle all the way up to 21-inches leaving plenty of room for maintenance on your car. This portable 75-inch frame can collapse your load all the way down to three inches. It is important to know that the weight of the load may shift when lowered or raised. Also, it is possible that the connector may fail if the fitting is not connected correctly.


We highly recommend this BL-5000SLX portable lifting system to those who routinely does maintenance on vehicles. The car lift weighs 215 pounds and has a 110V AC Motor system. It features a welded steel durable box frame along with cantilevered rubber block trays for better functionality. Beyond that, we love the fact that you can do extensive suspension work with ease.


Saves a lot of time
It is portable
Works great for cars with little ground clearance
Easy to use
Center is open for exhaust work
Tires are free for suspension and brake work


The weight of the load shifts when raised and lowered
The quick-connect fittings may fail if not fastened properly
Quickjack BL-5000SLX Car Lift - F80 M3

3. TRIUMPH NSS-8 – Top Rated 4 Post Residential Garage Car Lift

The Triumph NSS-8 car lift can make your one car garage into a dual storage two-car garage.

Drive Through Runway

The NSS-8 can handle a load up to 8,000 pounds and has a drive through width of 93 inches with a runway length of 165 inches. It can lift the load all the way up to 72 inches and as low as five inches. It comes with a jack tray, drip trays, and a caster kit. The overall height is 84 inches, and the total length is 175 inches. As you raise your vehicle, the NSS-8 has a safety automatic locking system that connects to 10 different locations.


We are excited about this versatile car lift where the top vehicle is lifted to 72 inches, and the bottom car is pulled through the 93 inches runway for extra storage in the garage. If you need to do maintenance on one of your vehicles, then pull one vehicle outside while you work on the other car. There is an adequate amount of room to work on the suspension, rotating the tires, or changing the oil.


Dual storage space in the garage
Can lift up to 8,000 pounds
Has a safety automatic locking system


Is not able to be folded
The welding may break if you exceed the weight limit

Buyer’s Guide

Car lifts are one of the best investments that a mechanic can have to work on vehicles. It speeds up the process tremendously. The hydraulic systems of today’s car lift can lift the load within 30 to 45 seconds. Many mechanics are reaping the benefits of having a car lift in the household garage.

Some lifts make it possible to double stack cars like the Triumph NSS-8 4 Post Storage Service Lift mentioned above. Car lifts are becoming more popular among those car enthusiasts and hobbyists that like to restore old classics.

Who can Benefit from Using a Car Lift?

Car lifts will benefit anyone who likes to do maintenance on vehicles at home, small mechanical business, body shops, and at the race track. Some people believe that car lifts are only for businesses, but that is not true. Homeowners with a garage can benefit from owning one as well.

The Benefits of Car Lifts

Vehicle maintenance becomes more accessible with a car lift

If you’re a mechanic by trade or someone who likes to do the maintenance on your investment vehicle, then you will be pleased about the versatility of a car lift. It can make life easier when working on the undercarriage of your vehicle, exhaust repairs, oil changes, suspension replacements, brakes, and the rotation of your tires.

A car lift will protect your investment

Your vehicle is a financial investment that can be protected with a car lift added to your garage at home. It will give more space by raising your car out of the way of other storage items or second vehicle.

By parking your car in the garage, it will protect it from theft and vandalism. With your vehicle in the garage, it will also be protected from weather damage and prolong the life of the body and paint job.

Seasonal garage storage for your pride and joy

During the winters, it is not logical to have your classic sit out in the weather. When there is little to no room to put your pride and joy into your garage, car lifts can make it possible. Having added storage can save you a costly storage fee during those big winter months.

Store a second vehicle in a one-car garage

There are many homes available today that have only one garage connected to it, and if your family has two cars, there is a dilemma. If you utilize a car lift, you will have plenty of room for two vehicles to be out of the weather conditions.

Two Cars in One-Car Garage

Car lifts are for more than cars

Even though these mechanisms are called car lifts, they can hold other vehicles such as pickup trucks, vans, and SUVs. The only condition is that the car doesn’t over exceed the lifting weight capacity. Believe it or not, they can even help store your lawn equipment, snowblower, and even your motorcycle.

Motorcycle on car lift
Motorcycle on lift

If all you want to do is work on your motorcycle, then you might want to check out our guide to motorcycle jacks instead.

Main Feature – The Ability to Lift a Vehicle

These mechanisms are great for lifting your vehicle for maintenance purposes or more storage space. It can be done with the hydraulic pack, arm restraints, lifting pads, and so much more. The motor and features of these car lifts have the strength to lift a load of 5,000 to 9,000 pounds within 30 to 45 seconds.

The adjustability is what makes it possible to use the same lift for every vehicle in the household. The automatic safety locks make it safe to lift your load in the range of 17.7 inches to 45 inches. The remote control helps the lift to have perfect precision.

What are the other essential features to consider?

Hydraulic Pack

The hydraulic pack design is with the safety of others in mind with the use of velocity fuses or hydraulic flow restrictions and includes the hydraulic circuit and hydraulic cylinders. These vital safety devices can control sudden downward travel if the component fails.

Arm Restraints

Car lifting positions designs are for different vehicle styles as no structure is the same. The two-post car lifts use the swing arm assemblies to adjust the arm design to fit a wide range of vehicles. The arm restraint device locks in place as the load is lifted.

Automatic Safety Locks

The automatic electronic safety locks on these products have multiple positions for dynamics flexibility. It keeps you safe and secure when you are under the car doing maintenance and your car from falling and becoming damaged. These safety locks engage as your load is lifted and to release the locks, you must go up slightly to lower the pressure of the load.

Remote Control

The remote control is what puts the motor in motion. It makes it easy and convenient to raise the vehicle in 30 to 45 seconds flat, and it is so much easier than those hand jacks. It can lower the load just as fast with perfect precision.

Lifting Pads

These pads are what help hold your load weight in place. Car lifts typically have different adapters that either come with the purchase of your lift or available at the manufacturer. There are pads for cars, motorcycles, and SUVs.

Solid Steel Frame Support Bars

Support bars are what holds the weight of the load. Each car lift has a weight capacity in the range of 5,000 pounds to 9,000 pounds. It is vital that you stay within the weight requirements for the maximum amount of support.

Frequent Asked Questions

Would it be safe to use a car lift for prolonged periods like over the winter?

Yes, it is possible with four-post car lifts. The weight isn’t on the hydraulic system but rather on the automatic safety locks. If you have a two-post car lift, it’s not recommended to leave your car up there for long periods of time.

How much weight pressure can the lifting arms handle?

The arm restraints of a car lift can typically handle 5,000 pounds to 9,000 pounds. The weight of most vehicles will work for these car lifts. For reference, a (relatively heavy for a car) current model Ford F150 Raptor SuperCab weighs 5,525 pounds.

Can a car lift be mounted outside in a driveway?

Yes, it is possible. The only thing to worry about is covering the motor when you’re not using it to protect it from weather damage.

How much weight capacity can a car lift handle?

The capacity of a car lift depends on the make and model and if they are a two or four-post lift. In general, car lifts typically can handle 5,000 to 9,000 pounds.

Are these car lifts portable for easy storage?

Yes, most car lifts are portable. However, they don’t typically fold small enough to fit into the trunk of a car.

Does a car lift need to be mounted on the garage floor? If so, how thick must the
concrete be?

Some designs are necessary, but not all. If you do choose a car lift design that needs to be mounted to the floor, then it is recommended to place it approximately four inches into the concrete.

Are the hydraulic power pack 110 volts or 220 volts?

Depending on the brand or size of the car lift will depend on the voltage. BendPak car lifts are powered by 110-220 volts. The Triumph NSS-8 is powered by 110 volts.

What prevents the car lift from dropping your vehicle?

Typically, car lifts have an automatic safety lock system that connects in different positions as the lift is raised. The locking system is what makes it safe for you to walk underneath your vehicle for maintenance purposes.

Does hydraulic fluid come with the lifts?

No, DOT and insurance laws do not permit hydraulic fluid to come with the car lifts due to the hazardous ingredients.

Do I need a special floor or foundation to support the lift?

Most commercial and residential foundations are adequate to support car lifts. However, you should always follow the concrete specifications.

What is the recommended ceiling height for car lifts?

The ceiling height of a car lifts is unique to each car lift. Check the manual for the lift you have chosen. Read it carefully and be sure not to skip over any import details.

Do car lifts require maintenance?

Yes, you have to maintain a car lift. Inspect it visually every month as you raise and lower the lift. Maintain the hydraulic system and cables, watching for low pressure or leaks.

How do I bleed my two-post hydraulic cylinders?

To bleed two-post hydraulic cylinders, raise the lift up and down with no weight on it. Lower the arms roughly to one foot off of the floor. Next, open the bleeders on top of the cylinders, the fluid will begin to bubble. After the fluid stops bubbling, you will need to reclose the bleeders.

Do I need an air compressor for a four-post lift?

Yes, it is necessary to have a 30 to 40 PSI air compressor to unfasten the locks. See our buyers guide to air compressors.

What causes the arms of a two-post lift to bounce up and down?

You may have air in the lines. To check it, raise the lift until it locks in place, then open the bleeder on top of the cylinders to release any air in the lines. When the fluid begins to leak out of the cylinder, close the bleeder.

What is the dissimilarity between the two post and four post lifts?

The four lift posts are mainly used o store a vehicle up in the air with another car underneath it. They have two steel track runners that lift vehicles by the wheels. These lifts can also be used for doing maintenance such as exhaust work, oil changes, and brakes.

The two lift posts lift your vehicle at four separate points on the frame and provide access to work on the underside of the car. These car lifts are not recommended for storing your vehicle for extended periods.

Final Thoughts

In this guide, you’ve learned how a car lift can save space in your garage and double stack your vehicles. You have been educated on how car lift adjustments can accommodate multiple vehicles as most families have more than one automobile. If you are a car enthusiast, a small business, or someone who is mechanically inclined, then a car lift may be beneficial to your garage.

Who knows what the technology of the future may bring, but for now, all car lifts mentioned in this guide will make maintenance on your vehicle more accessible and more storage space. We firmly believe if you read this guide you, now have the tools to make a good car lift choice.

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