MEWPs, also known as mobile elevated working platforms, aid safe working at height such as carrying out maintenance and repair work indoors. Without the correct equipment, workers’ safety could be put at risk. To ensure that you can complete indoor maintenance safely and efficiently, you need to know which powered access platform is most suitable for you.
Cherry pickers, scissor lifts and other MEWPs are the perfect replacement for steps and ladders due to their focus on health and safety. But with so many different access platforms to choose from, how do you know which one will be best for you when carrying out indoor maintenance?
In this blog post, we will discuss the different types of MEWPs that are most suitable for indoor maintenance work and considerations to take into account when choosing your scissors lifts and cherry pickers.
What Are The Different Types of MEWPs?
There are a variety of MEWPs available for hire which are suitable for an abundance of indoor applications and allow workers to complete a wide range of tasks safely at height.
Scissor lifts feature a crossed (scissor-like) mechanism which raises the platform vertically. Due to the fixed base of the lifting mechanism, a scissor lift’s platform can’t move horizontally or at any angles (though some have an extending platform). This makes it perfect for replacing and checking components that are attached to a ceiling or roof, such as lighting.
The lifting mechanism for a cherry picker is much more versatile and can manoeuvre the platform in a range of different directions, including both vertically and horizontally. This makes cherry pickers particularly suitable for challenging maintenance work that requires accessing hard-to-reach areas.
Similar to scissor lifts, personnel lifts can only extend vertically, however, their design is typically more compact and features a platform only suitable for one person. For smaller maintenance jobs, personnel lifts could be the ideal option. They’re much less complex to operate and yet provide a safe way to work at height.
Push Around Platforms
Push around platforms typically have a lower extendable range of just a few metres and aren’t powered either. This means that the platform has to be physically pushed into place by the operator. One of the reasons this is a popular choice for indoor maintenance work is due to less training being required to operate them.
MEWPs For Maintenance Work At Different Heights
One of the best ways to find out which MEWP is best for your particular maintenance requirements is to determine the height at which you will be required to work. As some MEWPs are more suitable to specific heights than others, it’s important to know the capabilities of each access platform.
Low Working Height
When completing maintenance work at low heights, such as five or fewer metres above the ground, a push around platform will be the most suitable. These access platforms can be easily moved into place and are often most suitable for navigating tighter spaces due to their compact size.
Push around platforms are ideal for use when accessing supermarket aisles and restricted spaces, due to their small size and ability to operate without petrol/diesel or electricity.
Recommended Push Around Platforms:
- 1.5m Manual Push Around Vertical – Power Tower Peco
- 2.5m Battery Push Around Vertical – Power Tower Nano
- 3.1m Battery Push Around Vertical – Power Tower Powertower
Medium Working Height
For maintenance jobs at medium level heights, a personnel lift could be the most suitable type of MEWP, allowing the operator to reach heights of around 8 metres. For compact warehouses and restricted spaces, a personnel platform is perfect due to its narrow build. There are also battery powered options available for use indoors, which don’t require cables that could be a potential trip hazard or fuel such as petrol or diesel which emit fumes.
MEWPs we’d recommend for reaching medium heights:
- 3.66m Battery Vertical Mast Lift – JLG 1230ES
- 8m Battery Boom Lift – Haulotte Star10
- 4.75m Battery Personnel Lift – SkyJack SJ16
- 6.02m Battery Personnel Lift – Genie GR20
High Working Height
When completing high-level maintenance at heights such as ceiling level or on the roof, a cherry picker or boom lift is likely to be the best option. Due to the length of the boom, boom lifts can provide a working height of over 58 metres. To provide such a high level of reach, the base has to be wider, meaning this type of access platform is more suitable for large open areas, such as warehouses.
Boom Lifts we’d recommend:
- 36.58m Diesel Boom Lift – Genie S120
- 41.15m Diesel Boom Lift – JLG 1350SJP
- 56.56m Diesel Boom Lift – JLG 1850SJ
Three Factors To Consider When Choosing Your Mewp
There are many other factors which you’ll need to take into consideration when hiring a MEWP for maintenance work, such as the size of the environment you’ll be operating within and the equipment which you may need to take up to height with you.
- Safe working load
When taking tools, small machines or replacement parts in a MEWP with you, it’s crucial that you obey the platform’s safe working load restrictions. This can be found in the powered access platform’s technical specification. If you overload the platform, it’s possible that it could become unstable, posing a threat to the operator.
If you need to operate at height with replacement parts or specific tools to complete the work, you’ll need to choose a MEWP with a high load capacity, to accommodate the extra weight.
- Size of working environment
The size of the environment you’re operating your MEWP in will also affect which type of machine you’ll be able to use. When working down aisles in supermarkets or completing maintenance work in small spaces, for example, space is limited, which means that you’ll need a machine with zero tail swing, non-marking tyres and no requirement for petrol or diesel as the MEWP will be operated indoors.
Assessing the environment before you hire or buy your powered access platform will ensure that you can get an access platform that is suitable for your required application.
When operating MEWPs indoors, in environments such as supermarkets, there is often the need for tyre covers and nappies. As supermarket floors are often lightly coloured and must remain as clean as possible for customers, tyre covers are used to prevent the rubber tyre marking the floor.
Furthermore, the use of nappies may also be required. Nappies are positioned under the machine, catching oil spills to help to protect areas from oil deposits should a diesel-powered MEWP develop a leak. However, to eliminate the problem of potential oil spillages altogether, choosing a battery-powered MEWP with non-marking tyres is a great option, which would always be the optimal solution.
Find Your MEWP With Horizon’s Platform Finder
Are you looking for a MEWP to help you work safely at height when completing maintenance jobs? At Horizon Platforms, we aim to make finding the perfect MEWP as easy as possible. With our Platform Finder tool you can do just that by answering a few simple questions on your requirements for the MEWP. Our tool will then give you a list of the best options available.
To quickly and easily find the most suitable MEWP for your indoor maintenance projects, check out the platform finder.
For more information on the best MEWPs for indoor applications, keep an eye on our blog for regular updates.