Electric vs Non-Electric Scissor Lifts: Choose the Right One

Electric vs Non-Electric Scissor Lifts

In aerial work platforms, scissor lifts are among the most versatile and commonly used equipment for indoor and outdoor applications. 

From construction and maintenance to warehouse operations and event setups, scissor lifts provide a safe and efficient way to elevate workers and materials to reach desired heights.

However, not all scissor lifts are created equal. And, there are 2 types of scissor lifts available –

  • Electric Scissor Lift  (powered by electricity)
  • Non – Electric Scissor Lift (fueled by diesel and gasoline)

To get the right equipment for your specific job requirements, work environment, and site conditions, you must learn about the scissor lift uses, the factors to consider before renting or buying, and the advantages & disadvantages of both types of scissor lifts. 

So, let’s read further to invest in the right equipment for your work.

Factors to Consider Before Buying or Renting Both Types of Scissor Lifts

Before diving into the pros and cons of each type of scissor lift, it’s essential to consider the following factors that will influence your decision:

  • Indoor vs. Outdoor Application
  • Terrain and Surface Conditions
  • Lift Height and Platform Capacity Requirements
  • Runtime and Battery Life (for electric lifts)
  • Noise Restrictions
  • Emission Regulations
  • Charging Infrastructure (for electric lifts)
  • Maintenance and Operating Costs

By evaluating these factors, you’ll get a better understanding of the specific needs of your project, which will help you choose the most suitable scissor lift type.

It’s time to learn more about each type and their pros and cons. 

Electric Scissor Lifts 

Electric scissor lifts work best for indoor applications where noise, air quality, and emissions are critical concerns. Because these lifts are powered by rechargeable batteries, they produce zero direct emissions during operation.

Advantages of Electric Scissor Lifts:

  • Zero Emissions: These lifts are environmentally friendly which makes them ideal for indoor use and sites with strict emission regulations.
  • Low Noise Levels: It doesn’t have a combustion engine which allows it to operate quietly to minimize disturbances in noise-sensitive environments.
  • Reduced Maintenance: Electric motors have fewer moving parts than combustion engines that require lower maintenance and cost.
  • Non-Marking Tires: Many electric scissor lifts feature non-marking tires that are the best fit to use on finished floors and surfaces.

Limitations of Electric Scissor Lifts:

Limited Runtime: Battery life restricts the continuous operating time. And, this one also requires regular charging or battery swapping.

Lower Lifting Heights: Electric scissor lifts generally have lower maximum lifting heights compared to their non-electric counterparts.

Lower Lifting Capacity: The platform capacity of electric lifts is often lower due to weight constraints associated with battery power.

Limited Terrain Capability: Most electric scissor lifts are designed for level, hard surfaces and may struggle on uneven or soft terrain.

Non-Electric Scissor Lifts

Non-electric scissor lifts run by diesel or gasoline engines which offer greater power, lifting capacity, and versatility for outdoor and rough terrain applications.

Advantages of Non-Electric Scissor Lifts:

  • Higher Lifting Heights: These lifts use diesel and gasoline for fuel which allows them to reach greater maximum heights. That’s why non-electric scissor lifts are considered more suitable for taller projects.
  • Increased Lifting Capacity: These lifts typically have higher platform capacities which allow for hopping more workers and materials.
  • Outdoor Capability: With rugged construction and 4-wheel drive options, non-electric lifts can navigate challenging terrains and job sites.
  • Continuous Operation: It can be refuelled anytime easily and allows uninterrupted operations.

Limitations of Non-Electric Scissor Lifts:

Emissions and Air Quality: Diesel and Gasoline fueling engines produce exhaust emissions which limits their suitability for indoor use or sites with strict emission regulations.

Noise Levels:  These lifts also generate more noise than electric motors potentially causing disturbances in noise-sensitive areas.

Higher Maintenance Costs: For smoother and uninterrupted work, it is required to change the engine and replace filters from time to time which increases operating costs.

How to Choose the Right Scissor Lift Type?

To choose the right scissor lift type you need to evaluate your project requirements, site conditions, and local regulations.

To make this evolution super easy for you, we have put together some general guidelines to help you make an informed decision:

Choose an electric scissor lift if:

  • You’re working indoors or in noise-sensitive environments.
  • Air quality and emission regulations are strict.
  • Your project involves finished floors or surfaces that require non-marking tires.
  • You have access to reliable charging infrastructure or can accommodate battery swapping.
  • Your lift height and platform capacity requirements are within the electric lift’s capabilities.

Choose a non-electric (diesel/gas) scissor lift if:

  • You’re working outdoors or on rough terrain.
  • Your project requires a higher reaching and lifting capacity.
  • Continuous operation without interruption.
  • Emissions and noise levels are not a major concern.
  • You’re okay with the cost of maintenance.

Final LIne

So, now you know the differences between electric and non-electric scissor lifts and how you can choose the right type for your job.

Once you come up with the right type, don’t forget to consider the length and uses of your upcoming projects to decide, if you should rent or buy a scissor lift.

If you’re still in doubt, about whether you should rent or buy a scissor lift.

Go for renting, because it allows you to access the specific lift type you need without the long-term commitment and maintenance responsibilities of ownership.

For renting electric or non-electric scissor lifts in Dubai, consider BVM Transport, a renowned company for scissor lift rental services. 

Contact us for any query or to rent your preferred type of scissor lift.

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