Boom Lift Versus Scissor Lift: Which One Should You Hire?


If your workers need to be able to reach high, out-of-the-way places, you need a lift. Whether you have a construction crew, a team of window washers or any other employees who work at heights, you may want to consider a scissor lift or a boom. Here's a look at the key similarities and differences between these tools.

Platform Size

Both boom lifts and scissor lifts have platforms that your workers can stand on. As a general rule of thumb, the platforms on scissor lifts tend to be larger — that means you can send up more people and more supplies. If you are painting a building or handling a similar task, that allows you to send up the crew and materials you need so you don't have to waste a lot of time going up and down.

A boom lift, in contrast, has a smaller platform, and depending on the nature of the work, that may require fewer trips up and down. In some cases, however, that may be worth it due to the manoeuvrability of a boom lift.


The manoeuvrability of boom lifts and scissor lifts have a big impact on which choice you ultimately make. Scissor lifts consist of a set of metal criss-crossed braces, reminiscent of a pair of scissors. The braces allow the platform to move up and down, but they don't allow for much lateral movement. As your project moves along, you have to lower the platform, get everyone off, move over the scissor lift over and then start again.

In contrast, a boom lift is much more manoeuvrable. The boom lifts with telescopic hydraulic arms can move up and down and side to side. Even more impressively, articulated boom lifts have segmented arms, and you can move these lifts up and around obstructions as needed. If flexibility or reaching an area blocked by numerous obstructions is your goal, you should consider a boom lift.


You also need to consider height, and with both scissors lifts and boom lifts, the heights vary a lot by the exact size and model of lift you choose. That said, the world's tallest scissor lift has a height of 13.8 metres, but the highest boom lift in the world can reach 56.4 metres.

Because of the advanced manoeuvrability and the ability to reach higher heights, boom lifts tend to be more expensive than scissor lifts. For a small project, a scissor lift may be perfect, but if you need flexibility and lots of height, a boom lift may be the superior option. For more information, contact a business such as Aluminium Scaffolds (Vic) Pty Ltd.


1 May 2017

Investing in New Industrial Equipment

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