What is a Chain Hoist?

A chain hoist is used to lift or lower a load using a drum or lift-wheel with rope or chain wraps. It can be operated manually, electrically, or pneumatically with the chain. The load is attached to the hoist with a lifting hook. The lifting hook is what grabs and lifts the load. Chain hoists most likely came about from earlier pulley systems.

Manual chain hoists need to be pulled by hand; most hoists require that you are only able to lift forty pounds to be able to move a load of up to five tons. The durability of the chain hoist depends greatly on its production and the materials used to manufacture it. A built-up, or custom, hoist, is more expensive but easier to repair and maintain in the long run. It can be manufactured according to the person’s specifications and designed specifically for what they intend to use it for.

A lot of the chain hoists can handle weight from half a ton up to five tons. The operations manual and the manufacturer’s instructions need to be read to determine exactly what their recommendations are depending on the specific design you choose. The weight limit and materials are different, and each may be designed to handle a numerous amount of various tasks.

Most companies will offer limited warranties that will cover any product defects due to the workmanship of the equipment. The warranty information can be found in the operation manual. The warranty is not going to remain valid if an unauthorized person attempts the repairs. Warranties are also non-transferrable and only cover the initial purchase. Proof of purchase is required when taking advantage of the warranty.




harrington CX003 hand chain hoist HARRINGTON CX003 MINI HAND CHAIN HOIST ¼ ton BUY NOW
Harriington CF hand chain hoist HARRINGTON CF HAND CHAIN HOIST 2000 pound BUY NOW
Harriington CF hand chain hoist JET 825 101920 HAND CHAIN HOIST 2000 pound BUY NOW
CM 5626A Steel hurricane CM 5626A STEEL HURRICANE HAND CHAIN HOIST 2000 pound BUY NOW

Some more info

How Chain Hoists Work

Chain hoist consists of three integral parts: lifting chains, lifting mechanisms, and hooks. The chain hoist operator pulls down on the chain, which then turns the gears which rotate the load chain. After lifting, the load is attached to a grab hook. There are multiple gears that assist in lifting the load.


The chain hoists made of steel are proven to last longer and be more resistant to wear and tear, as well as damage due to corrosion. Some hoist chains are also heat-treated and able to withstand extreme variations in temperature. Pre-lubricated ball bearings and Weston-Style load brakes also extend its lifespan, while improving safety standards.

How Much Weight Can They Handle?

Standard chain hoists can handle weight varying from half a ton up to five tons. Most chain hoists come equipped with hooks that stretch when the load limit is exceeded. This is known as a load limiter. The load limiter will prevent the equipment from lifting a load that exceeds the manufacturer’s recommendations. It will prevent the operator from being able to lift the heavy load to the maximum lift height.

What Kind of Warranty Should I Expect?

Most warranties will cover repairs for up to one year after the purchase date. It is important that all instructions were being followed, and the broken equipment isn’t due to negligence, carelessness, or misuse. Under the warranty, the defective parts will be repaired or replaced free of charge. This does not cover the cost of installation, however.


Harrington Hoists is a leading supplier of chain hoists. They are known for their high-quality products and their customer service focused business. The Harrington CX003 Mini Hand Chain Hoist has a ¼ ton capacity, 10’ lift, 8.5” headroom, and 0.8” hook opening.

This product features a manually operated chain hoist with hook mount. It has an aluminum body and steel frame that improves the durability. This hoist is mainly used for smaller jobs in locations where you may not have much room to maneuver. Its solid construction and portability make it the ideal hoist for small to moderate jobs. It requires little physical effort to operate and has a Grade 100 nickel plated load chain which provides greater resistance to corrosion. It also includes a load limiter to extend safety. It will stop the load from reaching maximum height if the load is too heavy.

The only downside would be the lower weight limit for loads, but this is why it is the perfect product for smaller jobs in tight spaces.


A one year warranty backs all Harrington products, but is limited to repairs and parts and excludes the cost of installation. Proper maintenance needs to be followed to maintain the integrity of the warranty.


Like the first product listed, this is also from the Harrington Company. This hoist features a die-cast aluminum body, heat-treated pinion shaft and load gear, and also a load chain made of heat-treated manganese alloy. Manganese alloy helps aid the resistance of fractures that can occur under the stress of a heavy load. It’s heavier construction makes it a more viable option which is why it is typically used on construction sites. CF hand chain hoists are designed for durability. They contain fewer parts which mean simplified maintenance.


The Harrington CF Hand Chain Hoist is covered by a two-year warranty. Same rules apply for all of these warranties, meaning all manufacturer instructions and recommendations will need to be followed, or you are at risk of voiding the warranty.


The Jet 825 101920 Hand Chain Hoist features alloy steel hooks for improved durability, as well as Weston-Style Dual-Pawl brake system to increase the safety of this equipment. Not only do the hooks have the ability to rotate 360 degrees for easier rigging, but the hooks also stretch when the load limit is exceeded to prevent the hoist from failing.


Jet offers a limited warranty against manufacturer defects. The accessories included with the equipment also carry the same limited warranty. This warranty is good for up to one year after the initial purchase date.

Jet’s Red Assurance Program guarantees reliability, dependability, and expertise. They offer online resources, a 1-800 customer service number, and have over 40,000 unique parts in stock. Red Assurance conducts a thirty point inspection before shipping their products to ensure high quality and safety standards.


The CM 5626A Steel Hurricane Hand Chain Hoist has a 2000 pound capacity, 14” headroom, a load limiter, and a precision four pocket lift wheel. The four pocket lift wheel provides better chain fit and reduced wear. The CM 5626A Steel Hurricane Hand Chain Hoist requires very minimal maintenance and is easily disassembled while not requiring any special tools. This hoist is a good choice, in my opinion, because of the small amount of maintenance needed to follow through with on a regular basis.


CM hand chain hoists come with a five-year warranty. Other than a lifetime warranty, this is the best offer available. An inspection will be done on the equipment to determine if the necessary repairs are due to defective workmanship or materials. If that is the case, all repairs or replacement parts will be fully covered under the warranty. The warranty does not cover any modifications that may have been made or any damage caused by abuse.

My Recommendation

Based on the research and performance value concerning all of the above products, I would recommend the Harrington CX003 Mini Hand Chain Hoist. Its durability and high-quality parts make it the perfect addition to my garage.

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