Everything You Need To Know About Vacuum Lifters - 4 Cladding

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Everything You Need To Know About Vacuum Lifters

Vacuum lifters are fast becoming the must-have piece of equipment in the construction industry. They make lifting and placing heavy cladding quick and easy, saving you heaps of time in the process. If you are new to the vacuum lifter world, do not worry. We have gathered all of the information you need to become an expert. If you want to shop around for your very own vacuum lifting equipment, then you can browse our range of equipment here.

What Exactly Is A Vacuum Lifter and What Do They Do?

If you are wondering what a vacuum lifter is, exactly, then you should know that it effectively does as its name suggests. It uses large suction pads at the end of a lifting tube to form an attachment with the item you wish to lift. The strength of the suction power is so great that it safely lifts heavy items to where you need them. You can get singular suction pads or a series of pads connected by a vacuum lifting beam frame. 

Vacuum lifters are great for a wide range of heavy-lifting. They provide a firm grip and can lift and lower any load with just one operator control, making your work as efficient as possible. Lifting heavy weights regularly can be extremely strenuous and dangerous if not done correctly. Vacuum lifters are perfect for relieving your manual handling burden, improving everyday health and safety in the workplace. They will help you keep injuries to a minimum, reducing the need for employee downtime. 

Another positive feature of vacuum lifters is their cost. They are a low-maintenance piece of machinery. If regularly serviced and well looked after, you can avoid your machinery experiencing wear and tear. Here at 4 Cladding Services, we can diagnose any issue with your vacuum lifter over the phone or video call and immediately schedule maintenance or a replacement machine

Different Types

There are two main types of vacuum lifters. These are VLT and VLA. A VLT (vacuum lifting tube) uses a vacuum tube and suction pads to grip and lift items. A VLA (vacuum lifting attachment) is an alternative approach to heavy-lifting. This is a detachable suction feature that can be attached to another form of lifting machine such as a forklift or crane. It is the best of both worlds for lifting, and vacuum lifter forklift attachments are better alternatives for on-site lifting. 


A VLT uses a suction vacuum to lift heavy loads. The suction feet contact the item you are lifting and form an airtight seal and block any airflow. As the vacuum level increases, the material is lifted effortlessly. The tube acts as both the vacuum and the lifting apparatus all in one. You can lift items such as barrels, boards, and heavy boxes quickly and easily, giving you more time for other essential tasks. These lifters are great for the shipping industry, where heavy items require frequent loading and unloading. 


VLAs are designed to fit into your existing lifting systems. This attachment will take your lifting to the next level making day-to-day lifting easier. They help lighten the load by picking up items in one single movement. They avoid you having to manually load up your other equipment, such as forklift trucks, reducing the risk of fatigue and injury. Designs are compact and provide safety and security when moving fragile items such as glass sheets or stone worktops. If your current lifting system makes it challenging to negotiate large, highly polished things, vacuum lifting suction frames can form strong attachments to any surface and raise. 

Battery Operated Vacuum Lifters

If you want to reduce your company’s carbon emissions or simply lower your electricity bill, battery-operated vacuum lifters are the best option. These lifters have two primary batteries and can adapt depending on the task. The Alpha battery is operated by hand, perfect for those lighter lifts such as glass or concrete tiles. The Beta battery is a more extensive operating system and requires more than one person. It has a strong suction which is undone by a slide valve. The Beta is helpful for those heavier tasks such as concrete slabs or large sheets of glass. 

Hand Held Vacuum Lifters

Hand-held vacuum lifters remove the need for cranes or larger lifting systems. If you only have light loads to lift but need to avoid the risk of marking the material, such as lifting glass sheets or other easily smudged materials. They will allow you to lift effectively while keeping your materials in the best possible condition for the job at hand. 


It is important to remember that despite vacuum lifters making lifting much safer, there are always risks when lifting heavy materials. Before using any lifter, you must undergo sufficient vacuum lifter training to ensure your safety and the safety of those around you. The strong suction pads greatly minimise the risk of dropping items; however, if you fail to check whether the seal has formed fully and is airtight, there is a chance that heavy items can still fall. 

As with any heavy load, it is essential that you still act with caution and stay out of the way of large, heavy items. There are also specifications of what vacuum lifting devices can lift certain types of material. Materials with porous surfaces are not recommended for vacuum lifting. It is harder to create enough suction to carry out a solid and secure lift.

If you could benefit from introducing a vacuum lifter into your business, contact us today. We will be happy to discuss your lifting requirements and consult you on the best vacuum lifter for your business. We will provide you with a top-quality product. We can also offer regular services by our highly experienced and certified technicians. 

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