Tips of the Trade for Ratchet Hoists

Posted by Hubbell Power Systems on Oct 23, 2017 10:02:00 AM

For the hoist user, long-term dependable performance is easy to obtain by following simple work guidelines and exercising proper maintenance. Basic safety rules apply when using ratchet hoists.

  1. Anchor Problems.pngNever use a hoist over its rating. If in doubt, check the load or use a stronger hoist
  2. Use a hoist only in a hook-to-hook straight line. The hoist body, chain or strap should never contact any device or surface which can put the hoist in a bind
  3. Take up only static loads. Hoists are not built to withstand impacts or vibrations
  4. Keep hoists clean and lubricated
  5. Never depend on the nylon strap for insulation safety in hot line work
  6. Never lift or support personnel in any way

Dos & Don’ts

  • Rated Capacity – Never put a cheater bar on the hoist handle. If you can’t readily take up the load with the handle that is furnished, you need a bigger hoist. Overloading a hoist can result in damage and a possible accident. It can also damage the hoist, a condition that could cause a future accident.
  • Straight Line Rigging – If the hoist is in any kind of a bind or if the chain and/or body is making a forcible contact with any object, the hoist is being used improperly. Use as a choker (where the chain or strap is wrapped around the load) or as a load binder (to secure loads on vehicles) invariably violates this rule.
  • Not a Load Binder – Using a hoist as a load binder violates three of the five basic guidelines to be followed when operating hoists. When used as a load binder, hoist rated capacity is likely to be exceeded. In most instances, a hook-to-hook straight line application cannot be obtained. In all cases, traveling loads cause both impact and vibration.
  • Avoid Self Ratcheting – This is a fast but dangerous way to lower loads. Under certain load conditions with the hoist in the lower mode, a flip of the handle can result in rapid back and forth motion. This is a result of a match between the load mass and the natural oscillation frequency of the handle. It results in a repetitive and rapid fire impacting of the hoist (and probably the other rigging as well) that a hoist is not designed to withstand. Lowering of the load should always be accomplished through manual jacking of the hoist handle.
  • Keep Clean and Lubricated – To work correctly, hoists have to be clean. You’ve learned to keep sand and dirt out of your fishing reel, so it is with a hoist. Give it the same consideration. It has parts machined to tighter tolerances than your favorite reel.

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Topics: Lineman Grade Tools