Instead of investing your money into a full tow truck rigged with various accessories, hook up a hidden wheel lift to your vehicle to haul anything from trailers and trucks to antique cars and campers. Lift and Tow is the originator of hidden wheel lifts, and we know how to support your hauling challenges. We innovate solutions that offer incredible value and help you achieve your goals. Our lifts are here to simplify the process of transporting any equipment you have.
When you need a functioning towing vehicle without the massive investment and maintenance of a tow truck, you can turn to us for hidden wheel lifts that meet and often exceed expectations. Whether you’re getting into the towing business as a one-person show or need to haul equipment for a personal project, Lift and Tow is here to educate you on how to install one of our three solutions using safe practices.
What Are Hidden Wheel Lifts?
Hidden wheel lifts are tows that attach to your pickup truck. Our solutions transform any adequate vehicle into a towing device that’s available whenever you need it. The lifts slide out from the bottom of the bed and operate with the touch of a button from inside the cab. They are compatible with various makes and models of vehicles, with easy installation steps.
Lift and Tow strives to solve your towing trials without affecting your vehicle’s performance or appearance. Gaining professional towing abilities without having to invest or rent a full tow truck gives you quick, efficient, versatile and safe operations. Hidden lifts help you transport trucks, trailers, vans, cars and many other devices.
Different Wheel Lift Options From Lift and Tow
At Lift and Tow, we have three different options of hidden wheel lifts, and each kit offers various features depending on your application and budget.
- The Z Series has a Z-bar structure. It’s self-loading, which means you never have to step out of the front seat. All you do is back your truck up to the load, push the remote control and let our lift get the job done safely and efficiently.
- The 3 Series is a two-function system with hydraulic power for up and down movements. The tow bar system is efficient for any project you have at hand.
- The 5 Series is a four-function tow lift, accompanied with hydraulic power that operates up, down, in and out. It increases productivity and is an upgraded solution of the 3 Series. The 5 Series decreases labor, eliminating the step of uploading the rig on your own.
Each kit from Lift and Tow ships with everything you need, like accessories and hardware, to make the installation process simple for DIY enthusiasts. We also have an inventory of towing accessories, as well as used towing equipment. Lift and Tow even consider what it means to work with our lifts. For example, making sure the frame of your truck is sturdy enough to withstand the weight of a wheel lift is a vital aspect. You must install frame reinforcements before anything else to help secure the device.
Another component to think about includes having a more economical option compared to buying a tow truck, which may require added equipment and other accessories. It also offers increased flexibility, no matter whether you work as a tow truck driver, haul personal items or want to drive the truck on its own.
Lift and Tow products reduce the amount of manual labor you exhaust, too. Using manual tow equipment is hard on your body and even increases safety risks. Manufactured with hydraulic systems, our units come with self-loading options that eradicate the need for labor and speed up the hitching process.
As a concealed lift, it attaches to the underside of your vehicle and is unseen when not in use. That way, you can use your truck for regular activities like driving to work or loading tools in the bed for various projects. Hidden tow lifts are less obvious, yet still get the job done like a full tow truck.
Pros and Cons of Installing a DIY Lift Project
If you like to work by yourself and often rely on your expertise for projects, our pickup truck hidden wheel lift installation is ideal for DIY enthusiasts. Benefits of working with our solutions include:
- Can lift up to 3,500 pounds
- Ideal for periodic use but also withstands daily hauling
- Can apply to a ¾-ton truck or bigger
- It’s a hidden system, so it won’t stick out from the back of your vehicle
- Made in the U.S.
- Manufactured with heavy-duty materials
- Negates the investment of purchasing an entire towing vehicle
- Restores the height of your truck to its best level
- Doesn’t alter the look of your pickup
- Doesn’t impair the drivability of the vehicle
- Can tow about 7,500 pounds
- Delivers a safe and smooth ride
- Has self-adjusting suspension stabilizers
- Helps boost tow capacity
- Helps clean up issues of sagging or leaning when carrying heavy loads
The advantages of working with the Z, 3 or 5 Series give you the freedom to tow a variety of loads at various weights on different trucks and cars. It’s a safe and discreet way to haul what you need without affecting your vehicle.
Disadvantages of a hidden wheel lift installation on a pickup are few. For example, you cannot install the apparatus onto a motorcycle or vehicles that are close to the ground. The vehicle or equipment you’re towing also stays in contact with the road, which makes it susceptible to hitting potholes and other road hazards.
Tips for Installing a Hidden Wheel Lift
Lift and Tow professionals are here to explain ways to install a hidden wheel lift. You have the choice to rely on your expertise and complete a DIY application, take your truck to an auto shop or depend on us to complete the fitting. If you decide on the DIY route, here are a few tips on how to achieve a safe and reliable wheel lift system.
- Place your truck on a jack stand or lift, so the rear wheels are off the ground.
- Remove the rear wheels, bumper and hitch, making sure to disconnect the hoses and lights.
- Measure the distance between the frame rails to use it for future reference.
- Take off the spare tire, plus the mounting bracket and rear cross member, using either the torch or saw-cutting method.
- Put the mainframe on a sturdy platform and slide it in from the back.
- Jack it up until it contacts the frame, while keeping it at about a one-and-a-half-inch differential.
- Choose the mounting pads that work the best and determine if you will need to notch a piece of the cross member where the cylinder will be.
- Maneuver the pads into the mainframe and apply a “C” clamp to hold the system in place — make sure there is adequate clearance.
- If you are installing the 3 Series solution, measure the mainframe from the furthest points from front to back, ensuring it’s more than 32 inches.
- Check each side of the mainframe from front to rear to see if the measurements are within a quarter-inch of each other.
- Straighten the pads and drill four half-inch holes, then tighten down the bolts with nuts, doing the same to the other side — it’s easier to begin with quarter-inch holes for better precision.
- For the 5 or Z Series, ensure the HYD block is mounted on the rail.
- At the back of the frame, separate the mainframe and place the pads into the structure.
- Clamp the pads in place, mark the holes where the bumper bolts were and make a third hole above or below where brackets go.
- Take out the pads and drill.
- Put the pads back and mark the frame, drilling the third hole.
- Lower the tailpipe to help position the wheel lifts into the frame rails. You may have to reposition to pipe to achieve proper clearance by lowering or remounting — either extend the brackets or replace the tailpipe with a turndown/extension to reroute the exhaust.
- Lower the wheel lift into place and rest it on the frame of the truck, centering it between each member.
- Weld around the rear mount and frame rails.
- Mount the forward-mounting and side-mounting angles.
- Put the bumper and pickup bed back in place by lowering them onto the chassis.
- Ensure proper clearance between the bed floor rails and lift side rails, then install the bolts.
- Hook up the hydraulic system for an engine-mounted pump.
- Connect the high-pressure line to the bottom valve and attach the other end to the pump port.
- Adjoin the high-pressure hose to the top port.
- For a 12 VDC, connect the high-pressure line to the bottom area of the lift valve marked “in” and connect the other end to the other port marked “out.”
- Complete for both hoses and fill the hydraulic system.
- Adhere the high-pressure hose to the top portion.
- Apply an airbag system to deliver an effective suspension and increased stabilization.
More Advice for DIY Wheel Lift Installation
Reinforcing your truck to withstand the wheel lift and a variety of hauls helps it be less susceptible to bending and breaking. Our Z, 3 and 5 Series kits come with shock extensions, which you will want to apply to the top or bottom of the shocks that are already on your truck. Determine where the accessory will miss the mainframe once attached. Then, cut the tube at the ideal length, drill a hole and slide the spring into the bracket, bolting it in place.
You will also want to work with the up and down cylinder. Lift it in place with the thread down and swing it to make sure it doesn’t hit any other components. Place the two hoses through the cylinder and screw them onto the block, tightening the bolts.
Another aspect of the installation process involves the boom. Jack the boom into place and grease the pin. Install the clip and decide where you want the pump to sit — either on the bracket or frame of the truck. Run the power cables and hoses, so they don’t hit any other piece like the exhaust. Run the tubes to the block without crossing them, then place the power cable to the engine and put it near the battery for temporary positioning.
Next, attach the wire to one side and run it to the positive battery post. Take the aluminum block wire and connect it to the pump, running it alongside the hoses. Fill the pump with ATF fluid.
When it comes to a T-bar arrangement, slide it onto the bar and tighten the structure. If you’re dealing with a Z-bar, there are a few different steps. When installing the boom, apply the track tray with the two bolts along with the two hoses and track assembly. Take the hose with 90-degree couplers and attach it to the track tray. Place the Z-bar onto the boom end and install the pin and tapered bolts, locking them tight.
Apply the next two bolts, sliding the hoses through the end of the boom, then add a track end bolt. Apply water-resistant grease on the fittings and other areas such as the underside of the boom, under uprights, etc.
Depending on the make and model of your pickup truck, there are several different steps you need to follow. For more details on what to do for your particular truck, refer to our manual.
Wheel Lift Installation Options We Provide
Our team of experts are here to help convert your pickup truck to a tow truck, whether you’re starting as a new business owner, you transport items for personal use or your tow vehicle is in the shop. Our innovative hidden wheel lift systems are easy to apply and are an efficient way to lift, secure and carry items from one location to the next. Our simple installation process is possible for any industry to help you remain productive.
You can apply the hidden wheel lift to various makes and models of trucks. If you are unsure which series is best for your application, we can help you determine which conversion kit works for your operation and budget. Our trained representatives also assist you in choosing the best accessories and products.
We ship the underbody wheel lift as well as instructions to walk you through each step. You can choose to install the equipment by yourself, or rely on your local mechanic for assistance. Or, even better, you can arrange for the professionals at Lift and Tow to complete the job. We employ trained experts who are ready to transform your pickup to a versatile and dependable tow truck.
Make an appointment that fits your schedule, and we will complete the fitting in five hours or fewer. Our advances are durable and trustworthy for every industry like business owners and police, plus municipalities and at-home operations. We support companies nationwide, whether you want to practice DIY installation or rely on the professionals. Lift and Tow stands behind every series of products and service to keep you running. With self-loading qualities, our fresh designs are ready when you are, and we have every part in stock when needed.
Trust the Expertise of Lift and Tow Professionals
As product innovators for 20 years, we are here to make your towing operations safe and efficient. With solutions made in the U.S. with unwavering quality, we back our products with a one-year warranty while delivering a high return on investment.
Now that you know the steps to install a hidden wheel lift, you can increase your company’s productivity levels and reduce the amount of physical labor you exert on your hauls. Reach out to us online to learn more about our wheel lift products. You can also contact our specialists if you need support during the self-installation method. If you would like to set up an appointment for Lift and Tow to complete your installation, give us a call at 717-496-0839.