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June 23, 2021

Successfully Specifying Electric Chain Hoists

Electric chain hoists are a commonly-used lifting mechanism for lifting a wide variety of loads. They are integral to many lifting operations in various settings and environments; no two hoists will be used in quite the same way. The fact that the hoist is motorised gives you more control over the lift, and it makes it easier too – when lifts are easier, they are safer, more efficient and simpler to plan. The benefits of using an electric chain hoist in a wide variety of environments are manifold.

What is an Electric Chain Hoist?

An electric chain hoist is an electrically powered hoist that can be used for lifting a variety of loads, usually with a maximum capacity of around 30 Tonnes. Applications are varied – from rigging, to production lines, to small machine shops, to overhead cranes, electric chain hoists can be used successfully.

Safety is Key When Using an Electric Chain Hoist

An electric chain hoist makes lifting easier and safer – but only when it is used as intended, of course. The maximum weight capacity for the hoist must never be exceeded and the hoist must always be used by competent, trained persons who can carry out and supervise lifting responsibly.

Chain hoists are covered by the Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations, or LOLER. These say that lifts must be:

• Planned by a competent person

• Supervised appropriately

• Carried out safely to prevent injury

The regulations also state that risks must be identified, and a thorough examination must be carried out on a regular basis. As a lifting accessory, an electric chain hoist must undergo one of these thorough inspections every six months. It should also be visually inspected before use to avoid day-to-day risks and potential complications.

Here are some general points to consider so you can use a chain hoist safely:

• Stop side pulling, as this can put stress on the hoist and cause the load to swing

• If the hoist has a limit switch, don’t overuse it

• Don’t allow the trolley to crash into the end stops, which avoids unnecessary stress on the hoist

• Avoid jogging the motor because this can generate heat and lead to motor failure

How to Specify an Electric Chain Hoist: Your Pre-Ordering Checklist

There are some questions we will always ask when you place an order for an electric chain hoist – the answers will help us determine the exact hoist that will suit your needs. Here is your checklist of information to collate before specifying and ordering an electric chain hoist:

• Safe working load, or capacity. Tell us about what you need to lift and how heavy it is so we can help you specify your hoist.

• Lift height. This is important to know for the length of the chain.

• Supply voltage. This is the voltage the hoist will run on – we need to know this to give an accurate quote.

• Beam flange width – if you need a beam trolley we will use this information to help us.

• The number of lifts you carry out per hour – tell us about the duty you need so we can specify the chain hoist’s motor.

• Travelling speeds needed – chain hoists can have different travelling speeds on some models.

It is also possible to buy used electric chain hoists. These can offer excellent value for money, however they should always come with a full servicing history and all necessary documentation. If you buy a new hoist, you should also verify that it has been properly certified and comes with complete paperwork.

Talk to our team if you would like assistance specifying an electric chain hoist, or any other type of hoist or lifting accessory that can meet your needs. Please get in touch and we will be happy to help.

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