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Who's got a pit in their garage?

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Old 06-12-2018, 07:36 PM
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Who's got a pit in their garage?

Didn't know where else to post this, so hope here is OK. So we're gonna cement the floor in our truck garage this summer, and we wanna put a pit in. Although it will be mostly for working on the trucks, I will obviously be doing car work as well. We're wondering how deep to make it. If somebody has one how deep is it? I'm like 5'11, so I'm thinking measure that deep plus whatever the ground clearance is on the IROC?
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Old 06-12-2018, 09:59 PM
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Re: Who's got a pit in their garage?

I don't have a pit but I do have a 2 post lift and I wouldn't have it any other way. Think about what kind of work you are going to do and if a pit is the best choice. Picture yourself doing the things you want/need to do in a pit, up and down stairs etc.
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Old 06-12-2018, 10:08 PM
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Re: Who's got a pit in their garage?

I've heard too many horror stories about heavier than air gases settling in service pits. Fun stuff like carbon monoxide. Don't notice you're poisoning yourself, pass out in the pit, wake up deaded.

Also seems like a good place for every spilled fluid to pool, and every 10mm socket to collect...
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Old 06-12-2018, 10:15 PM
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Re: Who's got a pit in their garage?

I put 4 post lifts in the garage which are handy for light work, and for storage.

Been thinking of running two concrete landings from the driveway, as it's got a bit of a hill to the side - this way, I can drive onto the landings for oil changes, etc., without ramps, etc.
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Old 06-12-2018, 10:24 PM
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Re: Who's got a pit in their garage?

I do plan on a lift eventually. Might do 2. I've worked in shops with both 2 and 4 post lifts. For some jobs i like the convenience of a drive on 4 post. But we want a pit cause we're tired of crawling under the trucks to change oil and adjust brakes. I'm 48 and my dad's 71, we're getting too old for that, lol!
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Old 06-13-2018, 02:29 AM
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Re: Who's got a pit in their garage?

In Connecticut pits are illegal. Years ago, a neighbor of mine helped a friend of his build his garage - with a pit. Then they covered it with plywood and poured a couple of inches of concrete on top. After the garage passed inspection, out came the sledgehammers.
Sneaky.
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Old 06-13-2018, 06:49 AM
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Re: Who's got a pit in their garage?

I would think a lift is less expensive and more versatile.
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Old 06-13-2018, 07:44 AM
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Re: Who's got a pit in their garage?

Originally Posted by NoEmissions84TA View Post
In Connecticut pits are illegal. Years ago, a neighbor of mine helped a friend of his build his garage - with a pit. Then they covered it with plywood and poured a couple of inches of concrete on top. After the garage passed inspection, out came the sledgehammers.
Sneaky.

A lot of guys around here do that with garage drains and garage bathroom plumbing. Hide it until insp is over plus cheaper taxes.
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Old 06-13-2018, 07:57 AM
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Re: Who's got a pit in their garage?

My garage has a pit. The house was built in the late 1930's. I haven't been able to use it yet because my garage is full of GN parts waiting to be installed on my project Grand National that I have been building.
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Old 06-13-2018, 08:25 AM
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Re: Who's got a pit in their garage?

Call it a Storm/ Tornado Shelter. Mine is 4x8 and 5' deep. I use it for storms.......!


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Old 06-13-2018, 10:25 AM
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Re: Who's got a pit in their garage?

Originally Posted by zya5point0 View Post
Didn't know where else to post this, so hope here is OK. So we're gonna cement the floor in our truck garage this summer, and we wanna put a pit in. Although it will be mostly for working on the trucks, I will obviously be doing car work as well. We're wondering how deep to make it. If somebody has one how deep is it? I'm like 5'11, so I'm thinking measure that deep plus whatever the ground clearance is on the IROC?
By trucks, if you mean semi's, you maybe want to check with independent truck mechanic's and ask their opinions. I used to deliver parts for Kenworth after i retired, and of all the repair shops i went to, one had a pit. I think it was only used for oil changes. You will need a chain fence around it, and like previously stated. you may want to check your local ordinances. I think to me, it's unused space when there isn't a vehicle over it. I remember as a kid, a few automotive shops had pit's, but i rarely ever see them anymore.
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Old 06-13-2018, 02:06 PM
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Re: Who's got a pit in their garage?

We have pits at my old job, the Swift yard in Salt Lake City. They were from the old Dick Simon days (shop was built in the early 90’s). Useful for inspecting trucks and doing oil changes and fluid changes, but they kept threatening to fill them in if anyone fell in. The rails for the oil drain pains came up to about my shoulder and I’m 5’10”. Top of the pit was probably another 3-4” above that. That being said, obviously the trucks have a lot more ground clearance then a camaro. I’d have to use a step to check most stuff above the axle.
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Old 06-13-2018, 04:20 PM
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Re: Who's got a pit in their garage?

why not just get a drive on lift? is ceiling height an issue? I feel like a lift would be cheaper anyways but I could be wrong
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Old 06-13-2018, 08:41 PM
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Re: Who's got a pit in their garage?

Lifts for semi's are really expensive. Yea, that's gonna be the primary use. And permits, what permits, lol. We do have a piece of paper from the township that says farm building(and no electric). We do keep a couple tractors in it tho I do know that regular commercial garages don't like having them for insurance reasons. We do plan on having angle irons on the top ledge so we can put boards over it. What I dread the most tho is the extra work we gotta do to dig out for it and form it up. Just grading the stone and pouring a floor is only a couple days work. We're also not sure how long we want it. Just like 25 feet, or the full 60 feet to get under the entire truck and trailer without having to move back and forth 10 times depending what we're doing. My thinking tho is do it how we would like to have it now so that later on I'm not laying on the creeper under the truck wishing we had the pit, lol.
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Old 06-14-2018, 11:52 AM
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Re: Who's got a pit in their garage?

25 feet is a lot less pit to run the risk of falling into if somebody isn’t paying attention and gets a steer tire caught in the pit. If you’re not a big guy then I wouldn’t worry about digging a pit to work on the trailer. Changing air cans and replacing airlines isn’t that bad on your back IMO
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Old 06-14-2018, 03:34 PM
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Re: Who's got a pit in their garage?

[QUOTE=Drew;6228560]I've heard too many horror stories about heavier than air gases settling in service pits. Fun stuff like carbon monoxide. Don't notice you're poisoning yourself, pass out in the pit, wake up deaded."

How do you wake up deaded?? LOL

Pits are only useful some of the time. Lifts are a better route unless you have garage height issues like I do where it wouldn't benefit me enough to put a lift in.
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Old 06-14-2018, 03:39 PM
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Re: Who's got a pit in their garage?

[QUOTE=Go Blue;6228935]
Originally Posted by Drew View Post
I've heard too many horror stories about heavier than air gases settling in service pits. Fun stuff like carbon monoxide. Don't notice you're poisoning yourself, pass out in the pit, wake up deaded."

How do you wake up deaded?? LOL

Pits are only useful some of the time. Lifts are a better route unless you have garage height issues like I do where it wouldn't benefit me enough to put a lift in.
Have you ever seen a semi on a lift? Not very often. You would need 30' ceilings.
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Old 06-14-2018, 08:51 PM
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Re: Who's got a pit in their garage?

^^^^ The center of the building is actually 28 feet, so almost enough, lol! Well were gonna sit down this weekend and figure out our exact plan. The more I think about it, I'm gonna talk the old man into a shorter pit. I think that'd be sufficient. We have plenty of driveway space to turn the trucks around however we want. And yea, there are some repairs that aren't bad laying on a creeper. And just having a smooth cement floor will be a 99.9% improvement over throwing down old carpets and crawling around. Thanks guys for your input. I'll be posting pics of the job as we go! The biggest pain will be moving the tools, benches, and air compressors... And cleaning up 2 years worth of crap we've just been throwing around and laying wherever!
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Old 06-14-2018, 09:13 PM
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Re: Who's got a pit in their garage?

As to pits being legal. I was at the new (built in 2017) tire and oil change building at my local Chevy dealer. They have 4 bays for tires, oil changes and alignments. All 4 bays have pits that are 40-50' (2 cars) long so the can work on 8 cars at a time.
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Old 06-16-2018, 10:37 PM
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Re: Who's got a pit in their garage?

So I was able to talk my dad into only going about 25-30 feet long, so I'm good with that. However, we butted heads today on another issue, ugh. The guy we're getting to help us with this project suggested raising the floor 2 inches in the center (length wise) so any water we get on the floor from melting ice on the trucks in winter weather runs towards the doors. I was like really?! This is gonna get interesting, lol!
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