Tag Archives: portable

Treat Yourself

Now that your Christmas shopping is done, it’s time to get yourself something nice

If you’re like most of our customers, you’ve just spent a lot of effort and money buying nice things for everyone but yourself. We have no doubt that you’re great at playing Santa, but now it’s time to think about getting yourself something nice, something that will make it easier to work on your hobby, take care of the family car, or keep your garage organized this winter.

Since you’re on our site, you can probably guess what we’re about to suggest: This winter, make your life better with a Backyard Buddy lift.

For hobbyists, a Backyard Buddy lift is a great way to remove some of the less-than-enjoyable parts of working on your vehicle. You can trade in laying on a cold garage floor and hoping your jack stand holds up while you work on the underside of your vehicle for sitting or standing while you work. You’ll never want to use a creeper again once you’ve installed an exhaust system while sitting on a stool, or replaced your brakes at eye level.

If you live in a snowy climate like we do, a Backyard Buddy lift can help keep you out of the freezing slush and cold water that comes in with your car any time you need to make a repair to your daily driver. Just put it on the lift and let the snow drip off at your feet. No more soaked-through back and knees while working.

Even if you’re not planning to work on your car in the winter, a Backyard Buddy lift can make your life easier. Our vehicle lifts can help you get back valuable real estate in your garage, and are safe enough for you to lift your vehicle out of the way and put mowers, bikes, snow blowers, garden supplies, and other garage clutter under all winter long. Drive up onto your lift, lift your vehicle to the ceiling, and enjoy brand new floor space.

We also have a special boat lift that is specifically designed to accommodate most 102 inch boat trailers. Your boat can spend the winter on the lift and your car can have some garage space back to keep it out of the snow. We also offer a solid deck for our 7,000 pound capacity lifts so that you can store ATVs, jet skis, snowmobiles, lawn tractors, or other mid-sized items on our lifts.

Backyard Buddy also offers a variety of lift accessories to make your life even easier. Our caster set allows you to move our lifts around, even with a vehicle on them. Combine our casters with our crane accessory and you can pick up and drop engines into your vehicle, move heavy objects around your garage, and even pull a body off of a frame for painting or body work. Our hydraulic jacks allow you to raise the front or rear of your vehicle off of the lift with the flip of a switch so that you can comfortably work on your wheels or brakes. If you’d rather use your own jack, our jack platforms easily roll along the length of the lift and support any kind of jack (including our two-ton air jack).

Now that your Christmas shopping is done, it’s time to get yourself something nice. Give us a call at (800) 837-9353 any time between 8:00 and 4:30 EST, and we will help you customize a gift to yourself that will make you happy for years.  Merry Christmas!

Being a Target

One of the problems with being at the top of your field is that you end up with a big target on your back. Everyone is aiming to take you down, by any means they can find.

At Backyard Buddy, making the best lifts that money can buy means that we have to constantly deal with detractors who insist that their shoddy, imported product is just as good as ours.

One of our favorite things that they attempt to insult us with is that our lifts are “over engineered.” Mostly, we take issue with the idea that something you literally are trusting your life to should be called “over engineered” as a negative.

Our lifts are built to be incredibly strong and incredibly reliable, and are designed to make failure almost impossible. Our lifts have survived earthquakes with cars on them. Our guiding principle isn’t value engineering or making our lifts just safe enough so that we can avoid lawsuits if they fail while still maximizing our profits. Our guiding principle is producing the best lifts possible. Full stop.

We do things the right way, not the cheap way. Most importantly, we use high-quality, American steel that we know will perform as advertised, not foreign steel that has a low chance of actually being inspected and a high-chance of having air bubbles and impurities in it. We use welded steel and frames to make our platforms, not cold formed or pressed steel. We use full square legs for strength, not formed C-shaped legs for more profits. We use externally routed, high-quality cables so that in the unlikely event they begin to fray our users can see the damage, and not find out about it from a sickening snap and clang of a broken cable hitting steel, or even worse, the crash of a vehicle hitting the ground.

Another thing that our competitors don’t like to mention is that we use American workers who actually care about making great products. Our employees are not moving as fast as they can to put lifts on cargo ships. They’re working as hard as they can to put lifts onto trailers to go down the road or across the country, not across the ocean.

This is not to say that we don’t dish out a little of our own. We’re happy to point out that a lot of our competitors use cheap foreign steel, cheap foreign labor, and cut corners wherever they can. We’re even happy to point out that some of our competitors’ lifts wobble when you push them, even under a load.

Ultimately, we are happy to put our lifts next to any of our competitors’ and have anyone give them a try to see which one they would rather stand beneath with a couple tons of steel above them.

If you’d like to come stand under one of our lifts and try to make it wobble (we’re happy to tell you that you won’t be able to), come visit our factory and showroom in Warren, OH. Give us a call at (800) 837-9353 during business hours and we will answer any questions you might have.

Come See Backyard Buddy in Atlantic City!

We’re always happy to have customers visit us at our factory and showroom in Warren, Ohio, but we also love going to car shows and auctions to show off our lifts and meet our fellow “car guys.”

One of our favorite places to go is the Classics in Atlantic City auction and car show put on by G. Potter King Auctions. If you’re particularly astute, you’ve already guessed where it is. The event runs from Friday, February 26th, to Sunday, February 28th, 2016 at the Atlantic City Convention Center. Tickets for the event are $25 for the weekend, and can be purchased online (http://www.acclassiccars.com/tickets.php).

The Classics in Atlantic City show is the largest indoor car show and auction in the United States, and has been a mainstay of the annual show and auction calendar for more than 40 years. Each year if fills the 500,000 square feet of the convention center with nearly 1,000 cars up for sale and auction, a huge vendor area (we’ll be in booth #s 818, 819 & 820, so stop by and visit), and thousands of people who are as into cars, trucks, and other vehicles as we are.

Last year’s three-day event drew 70,000 people, and featured more than 100 years of automotive history with about 500 cars up for auction and 450 for direct sale in the large Car Corral area. This year’s full catalog hasn’t been released yet, but if past auctions are any guide, there will be something for everybody, from Model Ts, to luxury cars of the 20s and 30s, to 60s American Muscle, to modern European performance cars. Among the cars already listed are a 1931 Ford Model A, a 1939 Packard Sedan, and more than one 1967 Corvette.

One small tip: if you’re planning to attend and bid, it’s about ⅓ less expensive to register as a bidder online before the auction ($195 until 2/15/16) than to do it at the show ($295).

For more information on the event, check out it’s webpage at www.acclassiccars.com. We hope to see you there!

Worth Every Penny

Why a Backyard Buddy Home Auto Lift is Worth Every Penny

If you’ve read this blog, you know how proud we are of our home auto lifts at Backyard Buddy. They use American components and American steel put together by American workers right here in Warren Ohio. It’s very rare that we hear complaints about our quality, but we do occasionally hear grumbling about our price.

We’re not afraid to come out and say it: A Backyard Buddy home auto lift isn’t cheap. They’re not cheaply made, they don’t use cheap components, and they don’t use cheap labor. The steel to make a Backyard Buddy lift alone costs more than some complete Chinese lifts.

So why do we insist on making such a high-quality auto lift?

A car lift for the home is a purchase that you are trusting to hold thousands of pounds of steel above your head while you work on your vehicle. You need to know that it won’t drop your vehicle, destroying it and whatever happens to be under it, including you. You want the safest, most stable lift available:

•    Unlike the flimsy light-gauge steel U-shaped posts of our competitors, the lift posts on a Backyard Buddy 4 post car lift are square and made of 4×4 structural steel tubing.
•    Our lifts are free standing, and can even be moved with a load on them, unlike our competitors’ lifts, which must be bolted into the floor to remain stable.
•    Our lifts have welded decks with a full angle iron frame and cross braces supporting the diamond plate deck, while our competitors’ decks are usually just stamped diamond plate with no support under it.
•    While our competitors use small tabs welded to the legs as locking points, our decks lock into the legs through a precision key cut into the steel itself
•    Our hydraulics have built-in flow restrictors that keep pressure in the system even in the event of a hydraulic failure, while our competitors’ lifts risk slamming your vehicle into the ground over something as simple as a burst hydraulic hose.
•    Where our competitors do their best to hide their cables and end them with welded caps that don’t let you inspect the cable, ours are fully swaged with visible ends so that you will know if they are starting to wear or slip.

But maybe our incredible safety and stability won’t convince you. If you’re the type of person that is okay with trusting your life to “good enough,” maybe you’ll be more interested in some of the options we offer that help make your life easier.

•    Our lifts have an optional built-in hydraulic jack that slides back and forth between the lift decks so that it can be used in any position and on even the lowest-profile vehicle. This lets you roll your vehicle onto the lift, raise it to whatever height you would like, then jack the wheels off the lift deck. The first time you do a chest-level brake job, you’ll know why this is one of our most popular options.
•    Our lifts are so stable that you can use the optional heavy-duty caster set to move the lift easily even when it’s got a vehicle on it.
•    Our crane attachment moves along the entire length of the lift, allowing you the freedom to easily lift a body off a chassis, pull a motor, or do any other heavy lifting you may need.
•    Combine the crane attachment with our heavy-duty casters and you can use the lift to move heavy loads around your garage or driveway.

While the foreign-made lifts may beat us on initial purchase price, we beat them in every other area, including value. You’ve no doubt heard the adage “buy once, cry once,” and it applies to a Backyard Buddy Lift home auto lift.  More than one of our customers threw away their money on a Chinese home auto lift first, and then ordered a Backyard Buddy lift when they realized just how crummy the foreign-made lift was.  A Backyard Buddy car lift for home and garage is a “once-in-a-lifetime” purchase; an investment in a tool that helps you store and work on your vehicles more safely and easily.  Buy one first and be done (until you find more room in your garage and order another one).

Another place we have the foreign competition thoroughly beaten: you can actually talk to us on the phone. Whether you’re an owner who has a question or someone who’s “just looking” and needs more information, a live person right here in our factory will be happy to talk to you between 8AM and 5PM EST at (800) 837-9353. And if you happen to be near our factory in Warren, Ohio, stop by our showroom and see just how safe, stable, and incredibly well built each and every Backyard Buddy home auto lift is.

Assembling a Backyard Buddy Lift

Assembling a Car Lift: Tips & How To from Backyard Buddy

We make Backyard Buddy lifts to be strong, reliable, and safe. One of the side benefits of this is that because we make such solid products, Backyard Buddy car lift assembly is easier than you’d anticipate. Most customers report back that they’ve assembled theirs in an afternoon or over a couple of evenings.

Unlike other lifts that wobble in a slight breeze or that have to be bolted into your garage floor to stand up safely, a Backyard Buddy car lift goes together as easily as following the instructions. Since our lifts are self-supporting, they can also be assembled at your leisure, with very few critical steps that must be performed together.

Why Assembling a Car Lift from Backyard Buddy is Simple

Every one of our lifts comes with detailed car lift assembly instructions that take you step-by-step through assembling your new lift. The instructions are written in plain English, not wordless drawings like some of the flat pack furniture you may have had the “pleasure” of assembling. We also include detailed diagrams that show how all the major components and systems of your lift go together so that you have a visual reference to compare your work against to make sure you’ve assembled everything correctly.

We’ve even made our car lift assembly instructions and diagrams available to download through our website (http://www.backyard-buddy.com/instructions.html). This way, people interested in buying a Backyard Buddy lift can see exactly what they need to do to put one together, and can also see how well-built our lifts are. We’ve also found that a lot of our customers like to download the instructions while their lift is being shipped to them so that they can get a sense of how the lift goes together before it is sitting in their garage waiting for them. Frankly, we think some of our customers download the instructions to help with that “night before Christmas” feeling they get while their lift is being shipped.

If you’re buying a car lift from Backyard Buddy, you’re probably pretty handy with your tools and don’t shy away from a do-it-yourself project. Even though we know you can do it, if assembling a car lift doesn’t sound like fun (but trust us, it is), or you don’t have time to put it together yourself, our staff is available every weekday from 8AM until 5PM EST to recommend a professional installer in your area to complete your car lift assembly. Our staff is also available to assist you if you run into a problem assembling your lift as well.

Since a picture is worth a lot of words (the last we heard, the exchange rate was somewhere around 1,000), we’d like to show you how easy it is to assemble a car lift from Backyard Buddy. Take a look at Sam Memmolo, from the TV and Radio shows “Shade Tree Mechanic,” “Two Guys Garage,” and “Sam’s Garage Radio Show” assembling his Backyard Buddy car lift: http://www.backyard-buddy.com/assembly-photos.html

We know that Sam is a well-respected mechanic, but don’t be intimidated. Just like he did, you too can put one of our lifts together in a couple of evenings.  Assembling a car lift from Backyard Buddy is simple and intuitive, another great reason to choose one of our high quality, proudly American made products.


Johnny 5 is Alive…Almost

Here at Backyard Buddy, we pride ourselves on our American-made products that provide good jobs for American workers. But we have to admit that  one of our workers doesn’t ask to get paid, never needs time off, and if he’s having a smoking break, something has gone wrong.

We’re talking about Johnny 5, our robotic welder (and if he name sounds a little familiar, you clearly like 80s movies too: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0091949/). Johnny is a cutting-edge, precision pulsed MIG welder robot that has a six-axis range of motion, just like a human arm, allowing for extremely precise positioning and welding. It is large enough to weld parts up to 18 feet long, 30 inches wide, and weighing 700 pounds, but agile enough that every weld is perfect.

You’ll never confuse Johnny 5 for a person, but watching it look for the correct location, make a weld, and then move on to the next location is fascinating. Check out this video of Johnny in action and you’ll see what we mean: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HGxIUfhJDdg.

Johnny 5’s ancestors first found work as spot welders in the 1980s auto industry, and their presence has grown steadily since. Robotic arc welders now make up about 20% of all industrial robots. As their software and sensors have improved over the years, they can now be pre-programmed to make welds in a given location, or use their own visual input to make welds. The latest robotic arc welders can also analyze electrical data in real time and adjust their welds accordingly.

Backyard Buddy purchased Johnny 5 to help reduce some of the workload on our experienced welders by making routine, automatable welds. This has increased our production capacity to help fill customer orders more quickly. Our long-term goal is that Johnny will help us expand our overall capabilities, put more people to work at Backyard Buddy, and better serve all of our customers with a quicker turnaround time on orders without any sacrifice in quality.

If you’d like to see Johnny 5 at work, or come check our showroom of vehicle lifts, call our customer service line at (800) 837-9353 from 8-5 Eastern time. One of our knowledgeable customer service staff will answer any question you may have, and will be happy to set up a time for you to come visit our showroom and factory.


Doing our Part

American Sniper has become a popular watch these days in the movie industry.  Opinions are flying all over as to the meaning and message behind the film.  Anti-war enthusiasts are using it as a platform to speak up and defend their position, while veterans and military families convey it’s a beautiful depiction of a man who served his country well.  The varying positions can be polarizing depending on which side you lie, or the movie can be another source of Patriotic inspiration to those who believe in the foundational truths of the United States.

You see, Chris Kyle’s life as a Navy Seal was about defending the rights of a nation.  He made it a personal mission to defend the rights of this country in order to protect those he loved.  He saw the enemy as a threat to the life and livelihood of Americans, and made it a point to do something about it.  He took on the personal responsibility to defend the land of the free and the home of the brave.

Being a veteran owned local business, we take supporting our nation seriously.  We desire to show our support for veterans and military families any way we can.  We take pride in coming alongside men and women who are giving their lives to defend our country.  Men and women much like Chris Kyle.  Some Americans will never have the opportunity to serve in the armed forces.  Many may not desire to join the military at all, but most of us, want to make a difference with our lives and impact those around us in meaningful way.  Simple choices and decisions we make every single day can make a difference when we begin to understand how each of our lives affects the whole.  When we begin to embrace our choices and the impact they make on others around us, we begin to live outside of ourselves and for the good of others.

Supporting the local community and the nation by committing to only buy local is one way you can make a difference.  When you purchase goods from people within your own community, you help that economy grow and prosper.  Your decision to help the local merchant allows them to continue to grow in business supporting themselves and that community.  At Backyard Buddy we too are committed to supporting local merchants and buying solely from suppliers within North America.  We desire to help keep our economy strong.

Because we are a locally owned business, we maintain a level of quality that other large manufacturing businesses cannot.  Our lifts and accessories are manufactured in Ohio and made from American or Canadian certified structural steel.  This is a decided choice, because we are committed to providing an excellent product for our customers.  Quality and safety are most important to us.  We want to provide a useful product that helps serve our customers in the best way possible.  Our free standing lifts are durable and do not need to be bolted to the floor because of the excellence in design and production.

Just as we are committed to supporting local, we want to encourage our customers, friends and suppliers to do the same.  We see it as such a valuable piece of our economic success.  We hope you too will consider making this choice for the products and services you purchase.

To find out more details about a Backyard Buddy Lift or to find out how you can purchase one today, click on the following link here:  http://backyardbuddy.com/car-lifts-7000-pound-4-post.html.  We are committed to Shop Local and buy only American Made products to support our great nation.  Won’t you consider making the same commitment and doing your part?




Home Grown Quality

“Proud to be an American” is a famous song many of us have grown up with and hear at patriotic events like Fourth of July fireworks or Labor Day parades.  We sing the lyrics when we hear it played without much thought, but very often we don’t live out the words we sing.  Rarely do we check labels on the products we purchase to see where it has been manufactured or made.  We simply make a quick purchase, often to instantly gratify what we need or want without thinking that our purchase supports and finances the person who has made it.

In a world of globalization and internet sales, so many Americans are buying products online from all over the world.  We see a picture on the internet and a few sentences “guaranteeing” quality but have no proof of it until the product is shipped and delivered to our front door.  What we fail to realize when we purchase products from other countries is their standards for excellence may not be the same as we have here in America.  Their testing qualifications for safety and their standards for supplies may not be up to par.  But as a customer you will not realize that until you begin putting it together and questioning it’s durability or strength.

Here at Backyard Buddy we absolutely guarantee a high quality product that you can count on.  We are proud to only use American-made components and U.S. or Canadian structural grade steel and hardware in ALL of our lifts and products.  Just as “home grown” or “locally grown” foods guarantee quality because they have not used pesticides or harmful chemicals when growing their food, we adhere to a quality of only using products and supplies Made in America for all of our equipment.

By making a commitment to only use American Made products, you help finance the American economy and you support and encourage financial growth within our American borders.  You also know what you are paying for – a guarantee of quality and durability.  The next time you sing “Proud to be an American”, why not truly mean it and commit to purchasing only American made products to support this nation and its economical growth?

Backyard Buddy Easy-Access to The Rescue

Easy-access rolling jack stand system


We’ve been working on getting our friend’s son’s 1979 Jeep CJ7 back on the road.  It has been off the road for about 15 years and consequently, by sitting that long it did not do the old CJ any favors.  Once we took a close look at it, what we thought would be a quick job of cleaning out the gas tank and changing the fluids has turned into a major project.

We’re currently working on replacing the body and patching the rear of the frame.  Jeep CJs are notorious for rusting in the rear frame kick up and shackle area, and this one is definitely not an exception. The main problem is that the frame’s design has manufacturing holes that allow dirt, moisture, and other crud inside the frame.  This thus provided free housing to many generations of mice.  Subsequently, we learned that mouse nests are excellent at holding in moisture and causing the frame rails to rust from the inside out.  Luckily, the sides and front of the frame are in good condition, therefore keeping this from being a total loss.

Since the garage is full of other projects, we’ve been working on the Jeep outside on the concrete driveway.  We have been using our Backyard Buddy Easy-Access system (http://www.backyardbuddy.com/automotive-lifts/backyard-buddy-easy-access/) to support the frame and to allow us to move it around so that we can easily work on it.

Easy-Access rolling jack stand system


The Easy-Access jack stand system is a great tool for anyone who needs to support their vehicle but doesn’t have the space or the need for a full auto lift.  Easy-Access has many different attachments that make it conducive to set up for any frame, axle and body combination.  It has heavy-duty rubber casters which allow it to roll on uneven surfaces easily.  It is very rigid, safe and much better than having the frame sitting on jack stands.  (Jack stands often wobble, they are hard to get level, and they are almost always unsafe to leave on dollies so that the vehicle can be moved around.)

The Easy-Access system is the next best thing to having an auto lift because it allows flexibility in moving around the frames and chassis.  We know people who have both an auto lift and the Easy-Access system, and as you probably well know by now, there are advantages to owning both.