What is Lift Gate and How Does Liftgate Work for Your Need?

DIY Lift Gate Installation Vs Engaging Pro Installers

Trucks have been continuously used to transport freight across several locations.

To ensure safety and adequate support during offloading on deliveries, the trucks used should be equipped appropriately.

If you want to depend on manpower alone, then you would find it challenging to offload any package that weighs more than 150 pounds. 

Such situations can lead to damaged packages or injuries for the people carrying out the offloading manually.  

A liftgate delivery service will come in handy for you If you’re not equipped with an appropriate offloading tool to get shipments freighted to your home, office, or site.

If you’re expecting a delivery that would likely warrant the use of a lift gate, then you need to know all about their functions, ease of use, and availability.

This article goes deeper into all of that, so you don’t have anything to worry about.

RELATED: Lift Gate for Pick Up Trucks!

What is a Liftgate?

A liftgate or tail lift is a kind of hydraulic machinery that is attached to the back of the truck for lifting the shipment onto the tailgate or back to the ground.

Although the equipment is mostly designed to operate using pneumatic, mechanical, or hydraulic mechanisms, sometimes they are made to operate electrically.

The motion of the equipment is usually controlled using a relay switch.

While there are other tools for loading shipment on and off trucks, liftgates can act as a suitable replacement in the case of those tools being unavailable or inappropriate for delivery.

As most liftgates can support a weight of up to 5,000 pounds, they can serve as a bridge to facilitate the loading of cargo if the load platform is elevated. 

How does a Liftgate work for your needs?

The mechanism of the tail lift is launched with the gate folded and installed against the rear of a truck or just beneath it.

As the driver of the machinery, you will unfold it as it lowers to create a platform for lifting the cargo.

On the other hand, offloading will require the shipment to be placed on the tail lift so that it gets lowered to the desired height or ground level. 

RELATED: What is Liftgate on Vans?

What ‘Liftgate at delivery’ means

Some cargoes are labeled to require a ‘liftgate at delivery’ which implies that there is no forklift or shipping dock to lift the shipments at the destination of the recipients.

So it signifies to the sender that a liftgate service would be required for the delivery.

When will a Liftgate be necessary?

A liftgate will be useful when there’s no forklift at a destination or a facility lacks the capacity for loading cargo onto and from the truck or trailer.

There are several other conditions when a liftgate will be necessary and here are a few of them;

  • At building sites

You’ll find that building sites typically lack an adequate shipping dock or do not even have one at all.

Notwithstanding, you have to ensure safe deliveries at the site since materials will continuously need to be transported from one part to another. 

  • Residential delivery

While a large number of homes receive deliveries, they cannot usually unload cargo from trucks effectively.

This is especially crucial when the shipment weighs more than the capacity of regular shipping services like FedEx or UPS.

It’s recommended that you should consider hiring a service with liftgate at delivery at 

  • No accessible loading dock

It is not uncommon for deliveries to be made at facilities that have no forklift or loading dock that can be accessed easily for loading the trailer or truck.

As long as the cargo never weighs beyond 150 pounds, this kind of facility will not find it difficult to offload cargoes off trailers or load onto trucks.

A liftgate or forklift will however become essential for deliveries at such destinations when the freight exceeds 150 pounds. 

RELATED: What are Standard Dock Height for Box Trucks?

Liftgate on Moving Truck for Delivery

Advantages of using a Liftgate service

Using a liftgate service for your deliveries is highly advantageous and here are some reasons why;

  • Minimizes damage to shipment:

The average platforms in trucks are typically tall enough to incur damage on the cargo if it slips or falls during loading or unloading.

Such damages can lead to costs that would have been otherwise avoided if you had used a safe unloading tool like liftgates. This applies especially to deliveries of fragile cargo.

  • Reduce the risk of injury: 

Injuries on work sites are typically a result of heavy materials being loaded manually using the wrong lifting technique.

This can lead to lawsuits and inevitable waste of time. A liftgate delivery relieves people from lifting heavy loads onto or off a truck, hence reducing the risk of any injury.

  • Reduced dependence on manpower:

To limit disturbances on-site, you need to maximize your effort by utilizing liftgate delivery services.

That way, you can avoid having to distract workers who are already occupied just to lift and transport heavy materials.

These distractions which can be prevented through the use of a tail lift can inhibit progress, especially with time-sensitive projects.

Liftgates only need to be operated by well trained driver so their use reduces your dependence on manpower for offloading. 

Popular Lift Gate FAQ 

The following are frequently asked questions about power liftgates. 

What is a power liftgate release?

In recent times, power liftgates and liftgates have become commonplace in the automobile industry.

They are widespread on hatchbacks, SUVs, sedans, and minivans. These days, even tailgates of most trucks feature a version of the tech. 

A power liftgate is a motorized hatch at the rear of vehicles that are programmed to open and close electronically.

It’s also called an automatic liftgate. You can control the system via the key fob or a button inside the vehicle. Some select vehicles’ liftgates can be activated by waving your foot just below the bumper. 

What is a liftgate on an SUV?

On SUVs, they are more accurately called tailgate or tail lift as it is often the trunk itself that pops open automatically.

The tech is designed and programmed to work making use of mechanical, hydraulic, or pneumatic mechanisms. Some have also been seen to work electrically. 

As is usually the case, the motion of the liftgate is activated using a relay switch either on the key fob or somewhere inside the SUV.

Some SUVs have newer versions of the tech where you can wave your foot just below the bumper. 

How much does a liftgate cost?

There is no way to come up with a particular cost price for liftgates since it comes in different models and sizes. That said, they can cost anywhere from $2,000 to $7,000. 

RELATED: How Many Trucks Sizes Are in Enterprise Fleet?

Which rental trucks have a liftgate?

Liftgates are almost now a common feature. Nearly all trucks have some driver-friendly features including air conditioning, automatic transmissions, power steering, power brakes, to mention only a few.

Liftgates are available on most models. Fetching from that, you will find liftgates on most trucks these days.  

Can you rent a truck with a liftgate?

Yes, you can. 

Among truck rental companies across the United States, however, Penske tends to be more affordable.

Truck rental customers enjoy low daily rates from Penske. The type of truck you order, its current condition, and the terrain you plan to travel will influence the ultimate rate. 

What SUVs have power liftgates?

At the moment, several SUVs offer the power liftgate option. Some of them include Mazda CX-30, Kia Telluride, Subaru Outback, Honda CR-V, Chevrolet Equinox, Volvo V60, Audi Q5, Lincoln Navigator, Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class. 

How much to rent a truck with a liftgate?

It varies with different rental companies and the type of truck you are renting.

At Penske, for example, expect to pay between $150 and $1,000 daily for their liftgate truck rental. Their 24-foot truck with liftgate rents for at least $170 per day. 

Where can I rent a pickup truck with a liftgate?

Almost all the rental companies in the United States now offer this option. Some of them include Penske, Budget truck rentals, Home Depot (currently not available in all locations), Ryder Box Trucks, and Enterprise Holding Inc. 

A popular company that doesn’t have the option at all is U-Haul. They offer mechanical ramps instead. 

How much does it cost to rent a box truck with a liftgate?

The actual rate you will be charged depends on the actual truck you will order, its condition, the local terrain, and so on.

Generally, you should expect to pay between $150 and $1,000 per day to rent a Penske liftgate truck rental.

Can you manually open a power liftgate?

What does liftgate service mean?Yes, you can. 

Normally, a power liftgate is programmed to automatically open and close at the touch of a button on the key fob or inside the vehicle.

Automakers also incorporated a way to disable the electronic function in case you much prefer to manually open (or close) the hatch.  

How much does it cost to install a liftgate on a box truck?

The first thing you need to consider before installing a liftgate on your box truck is application as there are several specifications to go through.

The type of gate (manual or automatic), platform size, choice of material, payload capacity, and power supply will determine the cost. The cost price is usually anywhere between $2,000 and $9,000. 

How much does a liftgate weigh?

There’s no way to know this for sure as it varies with vehicle types.  

How much can a liftgate hold?

A liftgate’s payload capacity can range from 1500 lbs. to 3500 lbs.

The rule of thumb is to fit smaller capacity liftgates on smaller trucks and larger capacity ones on larger trucks. The liftgate on a light-duty truck can’t hold the same cargo as the one on a 26-foot truck. 

How long do Liftgates last?

Liftgates are sturdy and durable. They can last as long as 10 years and even beyond.

One reason for their durability is that they run on truck batteries and don’t require charging assistance. Maintenance can also go a long way to extending its lifespan. 

What is liftgate service?

Liftgate service is also called a liftgate delivery service.

It comprises a truck that has a piece of electronic or hydraulic equipment (liftgate) installed at the rear, used for lifting freight from off the ground to the trucks’ tailgates or lowered from the same to the ground.

Are tailgate and liftgate the same thing?

No, they are slightly different. 

On one hand, a liftgate is a piece of electronic or hydraulic equipment at the rear of vehicles used for loading and unloading cargo.

On the other hand, a tailgate is a hatch at the rear of vehicles, hinged at the bottom so that they open downwards.   

Which cars have a power liftgate?

The following cars have them; 

Chevrolet: Tahoe, Suburban. 

Audi: A4 Allroad, Q7, A7, A8. 

Toyota: Rav4.

Nissan: Pathfinder, Rogue.

Honda: CRV. 

BMW: 3, 4, 7, 7 series, Alpina B7, X1, X3, X4, X6

Hyundai: Santa Fe Sports, Sonata, Azera, Elantra, Santa Fe, Tucson. 

Ford: C-Max Energi and Hybrid, Edge, Escapade, Explorer. 

Kia: Cadenza, K900, Optima, Sedona, Sorento, Sportage. 

Land Rover: Discovery, Discovery Sport, Range Rover, Range Rover Evoque, Range Rover Sport. 

Lexus: RX 350, RX 450h.

Volvo: S90, V90, XC90.

Does the 2020 RAV4 have a power liftgate?

Yes, it does. 

What is liftgate shipping?

It’s the same as liftgate delivery service. 

In Closing

While the logistics of deliveries are affected by several factors, the prevention of freight from getting damaged is one of the important aspects.

What Is A Power Liftgate Release?Without proper handling and adequate offloading mechanisms, cargoes can suffer damages that would have been otherwise avoided.

If a forklift or loading dock is unavailable, then a liftgate can be the ideal tool to rely on for the safe and effective offloading of large-sized freight.

Besides, tail lifts are considerably more affordable than forklifts if the delivery is a one-time service.

Construction sites usually lack a sufficient loading dock to lift shipments onto trailer beds and that’s where liftgates come in to be useful.

If you run a freight company, then you can hire a liftgate delivery service for a relatively small cost.

These services will utilize a liftgate-fitted truck to load or unload your shipment so that it is not exposed to damages.