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Loading Ramp Buying Guide

There are a several specs and features to consider when selecting the loading ramp that best suits your needs and fits your vehicle.  Below we've included a side-by-side model comparison table with key specs, as well as information on key ramp features.

Model Comparison

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Non-Swivel
 
Swivel
 
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High-Capacity Swivel
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Hide-A-Ramp
 

Handling

Storage

Weight Capacity (lb.)

Widths Available (in.)

Lengths Available (in.)

Non-swivel (fixed),

Spring assist deployment

Folded (bi- or tri-fold),

Inside rear or side door in cargo area

880  or 1,300 lb. standard

23", 31", 39", 47"

Unique widths can be special ordered

78", 98", 108", 128"

Third section can be added for more length

Swivel,

Spring assist deployment

Folded (bi- or tri-fold),

Inside rear doors in cargo area

1,500 lb. standard

31", 37", 47"

Unique widths can be special ordered

78", 98", 108", 126"

Third section can be added for more length

Swivel,

Spring assist deployment

Folded (bi- or tri-fold),

Inside rear doors in cargo area

2,200 or 3,300 lb. standard

47" 

Unique widths can be special ordered

98", 108", 128"

Third section can be added for more length

Non-swivel (fixed), Manual deployment

Flat,

Beneath sub-frame floor in cargo area

2,500 lb. standard

48"

120"

Vehicle Fit

Features such as ramp length, width, and swivel type may be impacted by your vehicle specs and cargo area layout. The first steps is to identify your van's make/model and roof height to understand the size of ramp that will best fit your vehicle.  For example, a Ford Transit Low Roof van will be limited to a maximum ramp length of 78" for a 2-section ramp and 116" for a 3-section ramp because the ramp's stored height must be less than the van's interior roof height. 

On each ramp series page, you'll find a Ramp Specs section outlining the width, length and stored height of each ramp model.  You'll also find an Application Guide section with fit guide charts and photo galleries for each compatible van make/model.

Loading ramp in low-roof cargo van

Non-Swivel vs. Swivel

Non-swivel models are the lowest cost, easiest install and simplest operation option.  They are permanently installed just inside the rear (or side) doors of the van, and the ramp must be deployed in order to access the van's cargo space (i.e., they do not "swivel" out of the way like a second door).  An optional removeable kit can be purchased that allows for the ramp to be removed from the vehicle and stored elsewhere, or shared between two vehicles as long as both vehicles are equipped with mounting hardware.

Swivel models allow for quick and easy access to the cargo area of your van without having to deploy the ramp (i.e., they "swivel" out of the way like a second door).  Our customers love the standard external swivel feature not only for quick access, but also for the ability to load a standard 40x48 pallet into the cargo space with a forklift.  An optional internal lock kit can be purchased that allows the ramp to swivel internally for storage against the wheel well. The swivel feature is available in our standard capacity series and high-capacity series ramps.  

Non-swivel loading ramp on high-roof cargo van

39"W x 108"L
non-swivel

Swivel loading ramp in low-roof cargo van

Swivel Type

On swivel loading ramps, left-hand (LH) swivel is standard, meaning the ramp pivots from the driver of the vehicle.

Right-hand (RH) swivel pivots from the passenger side of the vehicle. It can be special ordered, and is stocked in certain sizes.  If RH swivel is right for you, please inquire.  Reasons to use RH swivel include having an air conditioning unit near the rear driver's side wheel well on Ford Transits, and/or having build-outs with shelving on the driver's side for the cargo space that require a right-hand pivot point.

On occasion, customers have shelving units on both sides of the vehicle.  For these layouts, a "center shift" install can be accomplished with a special mounting kit.  If this is right for you, please inquire.

Left-hand swivel ramp in cargo van
Right-hand swivel ramp in cargo van

Weight Capacity

The stated weight capacities of our ramps are calculated as the "useable rating", meaning you can confidently handle cargo weighing up to the stated capacity without fear of overloading.  Weight capacities for each ramp series are as follows:

  • Non-swivel models have either an 880 lb. or 1,300 lb. capacity.  Smaller ramp sizes are stocked in 880 lb. capacity, and larger ramp sizes in 1,300 lb. capacity.  Unique weight capacities can be special ordered.

  • Swivel models have a capacity of 1,500 lb. 

  • High-capacity swivel models come in 2,200 lb. or 3,300 lb. capacity.

Non-swivel loading ramp with standard weight capacity
High-capacity swivel ramp for high-roof cargo van

Surface Texture

Non-swivel and Swivel ramp models are stocked in two surface options: solid and perforated. The solid surface features raised horizontal lines to provide traction assistance. The perforated surface features 3/4" stamped holes that are non-deburred, which provides superior traction.  We recommend the perforated surface in wet, icy, or muddy environments.  However, the 3/4" stamped holes can be a problem when loading items with small casters/wheels.  Equipment with wheels 3" or larger are best on perforated surface ramps. 

High-capacity swivel ramps are stocked with a solid surface that features shot-blasted "five bar diamond plate" to provide a rough texture and superior traction.  

Solid surface texture for WM System loading ramps
Perforated surface texture for WM System loading ramps

Ramp Width (side rail clearance)

Width clearance considerations:

  • Non-swivel and Swivel ramp models have a 2" tall side rail on either side of the ramp deck to keep cargo safely on the ramp.  

  • High-capacity swivel ramps have a 1/4" tall side rail on either side of the ramp deck.  The low side rail height is intentional and helps when loading wide machines, particularly those with low clearances.  

  • Stated ramp widths are the "free and clear" width measurements between side rails that loads must fit within.  Loads that exceed the stated width and will hang over the side rails will not be able to clear the transition point from the ramp deck to the van due to the height of the ramp's spring assist and locking mechanisms.  Ensure you select a ramp width that is as large (or larger) than your equipment.

47" wide loading ramps for cargo vans
Narrow-width loading ramps available for cargo vans

Ramp Length (load angle clearance)

  • Non-swivel ramps are stocked in 78", 98", 108" and 128" lengths. 

  • Swivel ramps are stocked in 78", 98" 108" and 126".

  • High-capacity swivel ramps are stocked in 98", 108" and 128".

  • A third piece can be added to select models to create a tri-fold, 3-section ramp. Please inquire for more details. 

Load angle clearance considerations:

  • Load angle refers to how steep the pitch of the ramp is when deployed, and load angle is calculated using the vehicle's ride height and the ramp's length. Equipment that is particularly heavy, long or low to the ground will require a lower load angle to easily move up and down the ramp and clear the transition point into the vehicle. Consider your vehicle ride height, equipment specs, and corresponding load angle need when deciding on a ramp length.  

  • Vehicles with a higher ride height will benefit from a longer ramp length, as it will provide a lower load angle and make it easier to move large equipment up and down the ramp.  Vehicles with a lower ride height can often make due with a shorter ramp.  

  • For specialized equipment/machines with especially low clearances, we can calculate load angle requirements and recommend compatible ramp models using your equipment's specifications.  Please inquire if this is relevant for you.

  • View our Load Angle Reference chart for more info. 

Long loading ramps available for low load angle clearance machinery
Long loading ramps available for motorcycles and ATVs
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