Deciding Which Hoist


It is very important to never lift any load heavier that the rated capacity on the hoist. This can cause safety problems, increase maintenance costs, and decrease the longevity of the hoist. To decide which capacity you will need, figure out the weight of your maximum load and round up to the next highest capacity rating. For example, if your maximum load is 3,500 lbs., you would need a 2 Ton (4,000 lbs.) capacity hoist. A good rule of thumb to follow is: the average load to be lifted by the hoist should be half of the rated capacity.

Duty Cycle

All of our hoists have H4 or greater ratings. These ratings are based on HMI (Hoist Manufacturers Institute) standards.

  • H4 – Heavy Duty: High volume handling in steel warehouses, machine shops, fabricating plants and mills, and foundries; manual or automatic cycling operations in heat treating and planting; loads at or near rated load frequently handled. All of our Electric Chain Hoists have the H4 Duty.


Measure the distance between the lowest point on the floor you need to reach (make sure to think about lowering into basement or sub-floor areas) and the bottom of the beam or suspension point. From this, subtract the headroom dimension of the hoist you choose. The distance number you have left is the lift required for your hoist. Always select a standard lift that is equal to or greater than the distance required.


Choosing a suspension is important for being able to position your hoist exactly where you need it. If you choose a trolley option, you must specify the flange width for the beam that you plan to put the hoist on. Most trolleys are adjustable in a range of widths. If you do not already have a beam to put your hoist on, patented track is available for most hoists. ACI Hoist & Crane can also supply you with everything you need to create a crane system. Call us to find out more information.

1. Hook Suspension – Standard on most hoists. The hoist can be hung anywhere that will support the maximum load. Hooks can be rigid (no rotation) or swivel (amount of rotation varies by hoist).

2. Lug Mount – Usually required on high capacity hoists. Good for hoist that will permanently be in one location. Lug mount provides more stability than hook mount.

3. Manual Push Trolley – An economical method for moving light loads and lifts under 25 feet.

4. Hand Geared Trolley – Most favorable for short runways where precision load placement is required.

5. Motorized Trolley – Recommended for longer spans or where constant speed is required. Some hoists have optional 2-speed or variable speed motorized trolleys.

Lift Speed

For most average industrial applications, a single-speed motor is appropriate. Two speed and variable (inverter) speed hoists are recommended when more precise control is necessary. Higher lift speeds require large horsepower motors. Adding a large motor can increase headroom, amp draw, and change voltage/phase requirements.

Power Supply Voltage

Most hoists are available in single-phase and three-phase. Single phase hoists can be 115V or 230V. Three phase hoists can be 230V or 460V. An electrician may be needed to determine if your current power supply will be able to handle your new electric chain hoist. Other voltages are available; please call us if you have a special voltage requirement.

Control Voltage

The voltage that runs through the pendant is called the control voltage. Lower control voltage can ensure the safety of the operator. Typically, 24V or 115V is standard.

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