Slow and steady has been the guiding principle for Joe Strano, owner and general manager of Acculift Equipment Inc. of Allentown.
For 38 years, his company has provided sales, installation, maintenance and repair services of material handling equipment, mobility aids, automotive lifts and hydraulic lifts and recycling equipment to residential and commercial clients in the Greater Lehigh Valley and beyond.
Although the company works primarily close to home, Strano said, “We make service calls – specializing in anything hydraulic – as far away as Washington, D.C., Connecticut and New York. We’re recommended frequently because we can troubleshoot a wide variety of equipment.”
Any given week may find Strano’s crew servicing a home stair glide and then working on a large commercial job.
Recently, it installed a freight elevator in the new Five Below store on Market Street in Philadelphia. Other large clients include Lehigh and West Chester universities, the U.S. Postal Service and Amazon.
Strano takes care to hire experienced experts in their fields, which has allowed for the diverse range of equipment and services he offers.
“Our clients always get to work with an expert,” he said.
EASY TO REACH
Sales and installation of stair glides and wheelchair lifts for customers with mobility issues are a large part of Strano’s business.
Customers include Bob Bley, from Belvidere, N.J., who uses a power wheelchair and scooter to get around. Bley hired Acculift to install a Harmar electric winch, hard-wired into his van, that easily loads the chair.
“Joe is easy to reach and never says, ‘We’ll see you next week,’ when you need help,” Bley said.
TRUCK AND CAR LIFTS
In recent years, the emphasis has been on truck and car lifts, sales, installation and maintenance, of which comprise about 30 percent of Strano’s business.
Mike Rodriguez, owner of Flexible Auto Mall in Allentown, used Acculift’s services in the past, so when it came time to expand his service department in a new location, he again called on Strano, this time to install two post lifts and an alignment lift.
“I like their friendly staff and the way Joe guides you through every step of the process, telling you everything you need to know, every step of the way,” said Rodriguez, who has recommended Acculift to others.
Strano is a former Marine who worked for IBM in the 1960s and ’70s before starting Acculift, which originally focused solely on forklifts.
Several years later, he joined a partnership of a business that sold and serviced elevators and combined the two.
Since 2006, the company has diversified and grown to the point that Strano is adding two vans to the fleet and hiring two new employees this spring.
“The Lehigh Valley has grown so much in the last few years, and there is more need,” Strano said. “Yes, there is competition, but there’s plenty of work for everyone.”