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Hanging drywall or sheetrock can be a tough job – especially if you’re doing ceilings or high walls.
One way is to buy drywall stilts. However, they still might not be enough if you’re working with high ceilings.
If you have limited help or need to do a job like this on your own, instead of using plaster, there’s one thing you definitely need to get the job done: a drywall lift / hoist.
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In a Rush?
Here's 3 products we picked out that thought you would be interested in depending on your budget...
Best Drywall Panel Lift with Reviews
Here's a list of the best drywall panel lifts and hoists on the market today:
1. Telpro Inc. PANELLIFT Drywall Lifter
Not so Good
This impressive lift has a low loading height, only 34 inches. Large 5-inch casters make transport over even rough and unfinished floors smooth and easy.
Plus, the single-stage winch and cam-lock brake give you precise control over raising and lowering. This is a smooth, safe, and efficient piece of equipment that you can rely on to perform.
Powerful enough to hold 150 pounds of drywall to an 11-foot ceiling but able to fit into the trunk of your car, this drywall lift is perfect for just about anyone. It’s an investment that will last a long time.
2. Stark 11' Drywall Rolling Lifter Panel Hoist
Not so Good
Made of durable, all-welded steel, this lift is contractor grade and built to last a lifetime. It’s supported by a wide 5-foot tripod base with oversized locks and pins at stress points for maximum support. There’s also a flip-down backstop to keep the lift from moving once you have it in the right position.
For contractor grade equipment at a more reasonable price, check out the Stark 11′ lift. With extra-large durable hardware at critical points in its construction, this machine was built to last a lifetime. It’s versatile enough to work well with even sloped ceilings.
3. Troy DPH11 Drywall & Panel Lift Hoist
Not so Good
The Troy Drywall Lift has durable all welded steel construction. Rubberized feet and a backstop keep it from moving once you have it in the right position. There are support hooks to keep the drywall in position during placement, too. It tilts for use with sloped ceilings and the telescoping arms are easy to adjust for even gigantic sheets of 16-foot drywall.
The Troy DPH11 is an affordable, durable choice for DIY projects around the house. It’s versatile, fits in the trunk of your car, and even comes with a 2-year warranty.
4. Best Choice Products Drywall 11' Lift Panel Hoist
Not so Good
Best Choice Products light has a sturdy steel frame that’s built to last. The wide tripod base helps the system stay balanced so you can lift drywall to the walls or ceiling to get the job done in no time. There’s an extender available, too, so you could really use this tool if you need to do a job that’s really high.
If you have a home drywall job or 2 that you want to complete with little or no assistance, this lift from Best Choice Products can really help make your work go fast. Plus, there’s an optional extended available if you need more height.
5. Ideal Choice Product 16' Drywall Lift
Not so Good
The Ideal Choice Products lift is powder coated and made of heavy duty steel. and has a quick, tool-free assembly. You can take it apart just as easily for storage when you’re all done with the job. The winch has a built-in brake and foot stops for easy and accurate positioning. Casters help it move easily over most floors and locks into place using simple foot brakes.
This lift from Ideal Choice Products is a great choice if you need something for a big job at home of if you need an extra set of hands. While it’s not quite professional level, it’ll definitely come in handy for small projects.
6. Red Line RLP901 Drywall Panel Hoist Lifter
Not so Good
Although this Red Line lift is a little pricey, it does something not many other lifts so: reaches ceiling heights of up to 15 feet. While there are extensions available with a few other lifts, it actually comes included with this one so there’s nothing extra to buy. The best part? It comes with a lifetime guarantee.
This Redline lift is a bit of a financial investment but the lifetime warranty makes it well worth it. Plus, with the ability to reach 15-foot ceilings, this lift can handle jobs that not a lot of other lifts can.
7. ARKSEN Drywall Panel Lift
Not so Good
With tool free assembly and quick set up, ARKSEN’s Drywall Lift helps you get drywall jobs done fast. The single stage locking mechanism and easy to use braking system only require 1 operator. It’s available in 3 different colors: blue, red, and yellow. The color doesn’t affect the performance, but it’s a nice extra that none of the other lifts in our list offer.
While not a good choice for contractors, ARKSEN’s Drywall Lift has everything a handyman or DIYer needs. It’s very reasonably priced.
8. Red Line Professional 11-Foot Drywall Lift
Not so Good
This is a great choice for a DIYer who has to finish a job without a lot of help. This lift can handle 4 x 16 feet sheets of drywall but the base and cradle are narrow enough to maneuver through doorways and tight hallways. It tilts 65 degrees to help make loading large sheets easier.
For a simple and reliable lift that allows one person to do a job easily on their own, you have to check out the Red Line Professional 11-Foot Drywall Lift. Contractors will love it, too.
Drywall Lift & Hoist Buying Guide
If you’re a DIYer who’s thinking about tackling a big drywall installation job on your own, you’ll find that a lift or hoist is just indispensable.
To help you choose the right one, it’s important to know what to look for. Here are some of the things to keep in mind while you’re trying to decide which one is the best drywall lift for you.
Before you get started, make sure you know how high you need the lift to go, especially if you’re working with ceilings. The standard height for ceilings in the US is about 8 or 9 feet. All of the products we chose go to at least 11 feet so they’d all work for a basic job.
If you’re going to be working with something higher, like a cathedral or vaulted ceiling, make sure your lift can go high enough. Some of these can go up to 13 or 14 feet and a standard lift isn’t going to cut it. Some drywall lifts have extensions you can buy to adjust the height but look for one that includes an extension if you can.
This is important if you’re working with sloped ceilings or when applying drywall to all the way at the top of the wall. It’s much easier to position a piece of drywall on a slant or in a horizontal position if you can tilt the platform. Pay particular attention to this if you’re going to be working primarily on your own.
Wheels or castors are really important because they help the lift move easily across the floor of your job site. You’ll have to reposition the lift pretty frequently before you’ve finished the job. Wheels will save a lot of time and frustration.
The most common size for a sheet of drywall is 4 x 8 feet. Most lifts can handle at least that. If you were planning on using larges sheets, make sure the lift can handle it. Most of the lifts we recommended can hold a sheet of drywall that’s 4 x 16 feet.
This only matters as much as it matters to you. If you’re only going to be using your lift for a project in your home, you probably don’t care whether or not you can break it down and put it in the trunk of your car. On the other hand, if you’re going to be using it for a lot of jobs in various places, portability is pretty important.
The best drywall hoist will help you immensely in your work. If you’re looking for another way to make your drywall jobs even easier, check out our buying guide and reviews for the top drywall sanders.