If you are considering buying yourself a yard ramp, it’s important to know that there are essentially two kinds of ramps out there: aluminum and steel. There are pros and cons to each, so we’ll go over what these are and what your best option is for buying a yard ramp.
First let’s take a look at the steel yard ramps (carbon steel yard ramps ). They all come in a variety of sizes, but on average steel yard ramps have a higher capacity for weight, being able to support even more than 30,000 lbs. This also means that they last longer than aluminum ramps and are more durable. However, steel ramps do require much more maintenance for things such as rust and the like. They are also more likely to create a fire if you are loading a combustible on steel. The steel-on-steel friction can create sparks, leading to a fire in the process of loading. They are mainly used with non-combustibles as a result.
Next is aluminum ramps. These work with both combustibles and non-combustibles, making them more versatile than steel ramps. They are also flexible when it comes to being able to work with smaller spaces. Aluminum ramps can pivot and turn short distances fairly easily and be positioned exactly where they may be needed. This makes loading much easier than if you are using a steel ramp in a cramped area, as they take up much more space and do not pivot. In terms of longevity, however, aluminum ramps have a much shorter lifespan compared to steel ramps, but they do not need to be maintained. Over a longer period of time, it costs more to own an aluminum ramp compared to a steel ramp because they would need to be replaced instead of cleaned. Since aluminum ramps are lighter than steel ramps, they are also more portable, but they have a much less load capacity. Usually this number is capped at about 16,000 lbs, which is half of the usual weight of a steel ramp.
The main reason why you would choose between these two kinds of ramps is primarily due to function. It all depends on what you want or need the ramp to do for you. If you want something that takes up less space or don’t feel like having to maintain your ramp throughout the years, go for aluminum. However, if you have the space available and require something that holds much more weight for the materials you need to load, then steel is a better option for you.