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Top tips for lifting manhole covers

Shop for Manhole Keys
Wonkee Donkee advises you to follow these steps to ensure safe lifting of heavy duty manhole covers.
Manhole keys of different lengths

Use the correct manhole key

Remember lifting keys are made for lightweight, medium-weight and heavy-weight manhole covers.

Crowbars are useful tools when prising a manhole cover off bur not for lifting them

If your manhole cover is stuck…

Use a crowbar for prising open a stuck manhole cover particularly if the cover has prising slots around the edge.

split triangle manhole cover showing where the prise holes are

Prising slots

The slots around the edge of a manhole cover are the prising slots.

Lifting correctly from the legs and not the back

Lift with your legs

Lift with your legs, not your back.

Squirrel in a manhole cover

Remove debris (and squirrels!)

Make sure that the manhole is free of obstructions!

Do not use a screwdriver to lift a manhole cover off

Using screwdrivers

Whilst they shouldn’t be used to lift heavy manhole covers, in certain circumstances, a screwdriver can be used to prise or lift some manhole covers, such as those made out of pressed steel or plastic.

A red crowbar with a cross through it

Prise with a crowbar, don’t lift

Do not lift a manhole cover with a crowbar. Crowbars are suitable to prise a cover open, not to lift it!

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