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The 5 Most Popular Types of Lifting Equipment

Most popular types of lifting equipment

Used across construction, storage centers, factories, landscaping, and more, lifting equipment helps workers accomplish a variety of tasks. Considering all the dynamic kinds of lifting equipment being put to use, we naturally asked the question: what are the most popular types of lifting equipment? Our answer came from Equipment Trader, an online heavy machinery marketplace, where we looked to see which lifting equipment categories had the most for-sale inventory. Here are the 5 most popular types of lifting equipment: 

1. Forklifts

Forklifts — the most common lifting machinery found on Equipment Trader — are small, wheeled vehicles with front-facing steel prongs that are positioned underneath flat materials, boxes, or pallets. These prongs move via a hydraulic system and while they are limited to simple vertical movement, a forklift’s small size does help it maneuver through narrow spaces. Forklifts are commonly used in storage centers and for moving materials on industrial, manufacturing, and construction sites.

Forklifts are manufactured by Caterpillar, Clark, Crown, Hyster, Toyota, Yale, and more.

2. Boom Lifts

Boom lifts consist of a grounded base with a long arm that has a platform or bucket at the end. Articulating or knuckle boom lifts have arms with a bending joint, providing more versatile movement. Telescopic or stick boom lifts have straight arms that allow for greater weight capacity. As a lift that offers both vertical and horizontal reach, with a wheeled base, boom lifts are useful in construction, agricultural, landscaping, and industrial work. Popular uses for boom lifts include electrical maintenance, putting up scaffolding, painting, and tree trimming.

Genie, Haulotte, JLG, Nifty Lift, and Skyjack are among the many boom lift manufacturers.

3. Scissor Lifts

Scissor lifts are aerial work platforms that are large enough to raise multiple workers and equipment at once. Though their vertical reach is somewhat limited, these enclosed platforms are sturdy, steady, and safe. Wheels on the base let them be easily transported to new locations. Scissor lifts can be powered via hydraulic, gas, diesel, or electric power, and rough terrain options have retractable legs for stabilization on uneven surfaces. HVAC repair, light construction, painting, and storage center work are among the many uses for a scissor lift.

Popular scissor lift OEMs include Genie, JLG, LGMG, Skyjack, Snorkel, and more.

4. Telehandlers

Telehandlers, also referred to as telescopic forklifts, feature steel prongs attached to an extendable boom that can also move vertically, horizontally, and diagonally. Telehandlers provide greater maneuverability and vertical reach than traditional forklifts, though they are quite a bit larger. Most typically used on construction sites, telehandlers can also be equipped with various attachments used in place of the prongs, such as hooks, buckets, platforms, and augers. Telehandlers are used to move materials on industrial, manufacturing, construction, and agricultural sites.

Telehandlers listed on Equipment Trader come from Caterpillar, Gehl, Genie, JCB, JLG, Skytrak, and more.

5. Bucket Trucks

Bucket trucks, also known as cherry picker trucks, are commercial vehicles with a long arm which has a bucket or platform at the end. By attaching the boom to a truck, bucket trucks can be quickly driven to a jobsite and immediately put into action. Bucket trucks are commonly used in utility work, such as repairing power and telephone lines, as well as in maintenance work, fruit picking, and even firefighting.

Bucket trucks manufacturers include Altec, Chevrolet-GMC, Ford, Freightliner, International, and more.


Forklifts, scissor lifts, boom lifts, telehandlers, and bucket trucks may be the most popular types of lifting machinery on Equipment Trader, there are so many more kinds of equipment to be found on our marketplace. To find your next lift, crane, or material handler, check out all the for-sale and for-rent machinery available nationwide at or our sister site


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Ethan Smith
Ethan Smith
is the Marketing Manager at Trader Interactive, overseeing marketing campaigns for ATV Trader, Boatline, Commercial Truck Trader, Cycle Trader, Equipment Trader, RV Trader, and more. Ethan believes in using accessible language to elevate conversations about industry topics relevant to marketplace buyers and sellers.

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