Which Lift Should You Buy: Two Post or Four Post?

This question has been asked dozens of times. There is no correct answer to this question.
However, by comparing advantages and disadvantages of both styles of lifts, perhaps we
can make your choice a little easier.

Most professional shops know what type of lift will work best for their business. Most
professional shops have both two post and four post above ground lifts in their service bays.
Unlike  these commercial  shops many of our customers  will only buy one lift  for  their home
garage. Greg Smith Equipment wants you to make the best buying decision.


" I just want to store my car  and do a little cleaning and polishing once in a while . I am not a
"big car guy", and really only want a lift to store a car that I will not be driving much."

If  this sounds like you , and if " storing a car " is the primary reason for owning a lift , we would
recommend a four post lift . The four post lift supports entire car " wheels "  much better than a
two post lift . Imagine yourself suspended six feet in the air . Would you rather have your entire
body supported (as if lying in a bed) or would you rather have just your torso supported ( lying
in a string hammock) with your arms and legs dangling?

A four post lift acts much like the bed , supporting the entire vehicle . The two post lift acts like
the hammock, supporting only the torso , and allowing the four wheel assemblies to " dangle ".

"I want to do all types of repairs on my vehicles, and I am on a limited budget."

Then you want a two post lift for sure! The two post lift is the most inexpensive way to raise the
most amount of  weight . The two post lift  allows the operator  to easily  access all parts of  the
vehicle, including the wheel assemblies,whereas the four post lift requires an auxiliary lift (at an
extra cost) that will raise the car off the runways (to allow wheel service).


A four post lift can be portable (most come with a free caster kit ). The four post lift may also be
permanently anchored. A two post lift MUST be anchored to the ground.

A four post lift generally features a 110 volt motor which does not require special wiring to install.
A two post lift will come with a 220 volt single phase motor.

A four post lift takes up much more room than a two post lift.

A  two post lift  will raise a car " higher " in a low ceiling garage .This is because  the  four wheel
assemblies hang below the four lifting arms ( the vehicle is lifted by the frame ). For instance, a
vehicle that is 72 inches tall ( from  the bottom of the  tires to  the luggage rack ) will  remain 72 

inches tall  when lifted on a four post lift. However , this same vehicle may only be 55 inches tall 
when lifted on a two post lift,because17 inches may be " hanging "below the arms If you have a
10 foot ceiling,the two post lift will raise most vehicles to about 6 feet off the ground.

A four post lift makes it  much easier to load and  position  the vehicle.The runways of  the four
post  lift make it easy for the operator to just drive onto the lift . There is no need  ( as on a two 

post lift ) to get out of the car , kneel down , and correctly position  the arms to ensure  that the 
vehicle will be lifted evenly.

Extremely low ground clearance vehicles are much easier to load on a four post lift.

So which lift is right for you? Only you can make that decision. We just hope that your new lift 

will come from the hundreds of  above ground lifts we stock at  our six Greg Smith Equipment 
Sales locations.