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Capabilities of Boom Lifts

JLG boom lift in use

When you have personnel and materials you need to move to high or confined spaces, you need a safe, reliable and high-quality boom lift that has the right capabilities for the job. If you don’t own the boom lift you need, you can rent it from a local company who has access to dependable hydraulic and electric lifts that are maintained and serviced by professionals.

If you find yourself in need of an aerial lift, consult our friendly and knowledgeable representatives who can make the correct size and capacity recommendations for your situation. Continue reading our guide to the different sizes of boom lifts and learn which is right for you.

What Are the Different Sizes of Boom Lifts?

Boom lifts are a particular kind of aerial lift that give the operator excellent maneuverability and flexibility. Because of the long, adjustable arm, boom lifts reach farther in a single direction than other types of aerial lifts.

Boom lifts are a versatile and useful aerial lift to rent when you need to access hard-to-reach places and safely lift people and heavy materials. They come in different sizes, heights, weight capacities and capabilities, each solving a particular problem and suited for a specific application.

If it’s your first time renting a boom lift, you’ll need to know about the two main categories of this type of aerial lift and what sets them apart from each other:

  • Straight (telescopic) boom lifts: Straight boom lifts have a straight but telescopic arm, meaning that the boom can extend from and retract into itself, like a telescope. Straight boom lifts have the greatest height capacities, with many models reaching over 120 feet. Telescopic booms also have excellent horizontal reach, allowing you to access places that would be harder to reach with other kinds of lifts that only extend vertically.
  • Articulated boom lifts: Articulated booms are different from straight booms in that they hinge, or articulate, up and over obstacles, providing reach in confined places. Articulated booms are ideal when you need to reach over objects to access work areas. Many articulated boom models also have a jib — an additional articulating platform that allows workers to move up-and-down and/or side-to-side. Some articulated boom models can reach up to 100 feet.

In addition to the two types of boom lifts, you’ll also need to consider how boom lifts are sized. When researching the capabilities of boom lifts, there are four “sizes” or capacities to consider:

  • Height: The vertical length
  • Range: The horizontal reach
  • Weight: How much weight the platform can hold
  • Dimensions: The length and width of the platform

How High Can Boom Lifts Reach?

How far a boom lift can reach also depends on the manufacturer and their particular models. Here’s a look at the heights provided by JLG and Genie’s straight and articulated boom lifts.

Straight Boom Lift Heights

Both JLG and Genie provide a variety of straight boom lifts in different sizes. Here’s a comparison of what these two brands offer:

Both brands have several boom lift models with heights that fall in between these largest and smallest sizes.

Articulated Boom Lift Heights

For articulated boom lifts, both brands offer several options with short, long and high-capacity articulating booms:

Genie and JLG also offer intermediate sizes in their articulated boom lifts, including 40-, 45- and 60-foot booms.

Genie boom lift in use

How Much Weight Can a Boom Lift Hold?

It’s critical to know much weight a boom lift can hold. When deciding on a boom lift, get an accurate idea of how much weight you’ll need to hold so you can choose the right size boom lift for you.

Weight capacities for boom lifts vary depending on whether it’s an articulated or straight boom lift. Genie’s articulated and straight boom lifts all have a lift capacity of 500 pounds. JLG’s straight boom lifts can hold up to 1,000 pounds on many of their models. JLG articulated boom lifts have lift capacities between 500 and 1,000 pounds.

What Size Boom Lift Do I Need?

When deciding what size of boom lift you need, it’s important to know your precise height requirement that will safely cover your reaching needs. Measure how high you need to reach and then choose a boom lift that can cover at least this height, plus a bit more. When measuring for boom lift size, also take into account the required range — the horizontal reach you need — which you can obtain with either a straight or articulated boom lift.

Next, you’ll need to think about the weight capacity you need. Are you lifting a single worker and some light materials, such as for repairs or small installations? Or are you planning to lift heavy materials for construction projects? As most boom lifts have a safe platform capacity of around 500 pounds, weight is a crucial factor to consider when renting your next boom lift.

The final consideration when it comes to different sizes of boom lifts is the platform dimensions. A wider platform gives you more room to work comfortably, while a narrower platform offers better maneuverability into restricted spots, generally costs less and won’t be overkill for smaller jobs.

As always, it’s good to consult the knowledgeable representatives at Ohio Cat Rental Store about the details of your project so they can recommend the right product for your needs.

Find the Right Boom Lift

Moving workers and materials to safe heights requires dependable boom lifts you can trust. When you’re in need of a boom lift, take advantage of the convenience, affordability and limited commitment that comes with equipment rentals. Cat® Rental Stores have boom lifts for rent and can source the right model for you from our massive Cat dealer network.

For boom lift rentals in Ohio, contact the Ohio Cat Rental Store. With 11 locations throughout the state, we can quickly and conveniently source the right straight or articulated boom lift you need. All boom lifts rented from Ohio Rental Store are backed by the Caterpillar® quality guarantee, meaning you can trust that your rental equipment has been maintained and serviced to the highest Cat standards you’ve come to trust. Get your aerial projects done faster and safer with the Ohio Cat Rental Store.

Browse our inventory of boom lifts for rent and request a free quote. For more information on equipment rentals, contact us today or stop by a location near you.

JLG and Genie boom lifts