Almost everybody has changed a tire at some point in their life. While a spare tire is recognized as a necessity, the second most important tool for the job is a jack. It isn’t easy to lift the vehicle off the ground without it.
Jacks are essential in any workshop or garage. They are powerful tools that make lifting thousands of pounds a breeze. However, because modern jacks have become so reliable, users often neglect standard safety precautions. They assume that absolutely nothing can go wrong and that something as simple as using a jack stand is a waste of time. However, this is far from the case.
Jacks and stands are an essential part of lifting vehicles. Jacks are there to lift a load, not hold it. They use hydraulics to lift and are prone to failure if they are constantly under pressure, especially if they are not properly maintained. It takes one faulty seal for the whole system to lose pressure and the load to drop. The idea that you can leave a heavy truck on a jack for an extended period without repercussions is a myth that can cost the user dearly. Jacks and jack stands, on the other hand, are specifically designed to hold static loads during routine maintenance reliably.
Why should you use a jack stand?
Hydraulic jacks can lift vehicles quickly and easily, but they can (and probably will) fall over occasionally – incredibly cheap models. Also, jacks only provide one point of contact, making your vehicle unstable and prone to tipping over if you lift it in the middle. That puts you and your vehicle at risk.
Jack stands not only protect you and your vehicle from falling jacks but also provide multiple contact points that help prevent tipping problems.
THE SAFE AND CORRECT USE OF JACK STAND
Step 1: Check your equipment. Inspect all parts to ensure they are in good working order. Check the legs for bends, breaks, or metal deformations; if a tool is defective, repair or replace it.
Step 2: Wear appropriate clothing, including a stiff hat or welding helmet, safety shoes, and gloves when lifting a vehicle.
Step 3: Keep the ground in your work area clear of debris to move around the jack without obstruction.
Step 4: Work in the correct position and always make sure you have your balance and a secure footing.
Step 5: Be alert and keep bystanders at a safe distance. Never allow anyone with a load to be under the jack.
Step 6: Park your vehicle on a firm, solid, and level surface such as concrete or asphalt. Never lift your vehicle on soft or uneven ground. If the ground shifts or the jack changes position, you could be seriously injured or killed.
Step 7: To prevent the vehicle from rolling back unexpectedly, place a wheel chock on the wheel(s) opposite the place where you will place the jack. If you are jacking up the left side of the vehicle, place one wheel chock in front of the right front wheel and another behind the right rear wheel. If you want to jack up the right front wheel, place the wheel chock behind the left rear wheel.
Step 8: Check your jack and ensure the pressure relief valve is closed. (Normally, you close the valve by turning the jack lever clockwise). If your jack leaks fluid or shows other signs of a defect, stop work and repair or replace the jack before continuing. Do not use the jack for routine repairs, only for emergencies.
Advantages of jack stands
Increased safety: Hydraulic jacks are suitable for lifting your vehicle in emergencies, but it’s not safe to rely on them to keep your vehicle hovering for long periods. For this, you need jack stands. They are strong enough to support your vehicle and lift it off the ground while you work underneath.
Tire protection: If you don’t use your vehicle for months, jack stands can help you maintain the condition of your tires. For vehicles parked for long periods, all the weight is on a small part of each tire, making that part more susceptible to flat spots and dry rot.
Easier maintenance: With a jack, you can service your vehicle from the comfort of your garage. That saves you the time and expense of driving to the garage.
Some of the best jacks and stands available today include:
The Clarke CAX2TF is a two-ton folding axle stand that can use for both front and rear axles. The stands are designed to fold flat when not used, making them ideal for transport or storage.
2 Ton Folding Axle Stands – Welded steel construction for increased strength and safety. 2-tonne load capacity per pair. It can be folded when not in use. Steel construction with bolts and chains to support the load. U-shaped saddle for even load distribution. 4 height positions. Min/max height 235/360 mm.
The Clarke CBJ2B is a heavy-duty bottle jack designed for demanding environments. The CBJ2B features an innovative design with a unique locking mechanism that allows easy operation and maintenance.
This professional quality bottle jack is designed for rugged daily use in garages and workshops. The capacity is 2 tonnes. The height of the jack is 155-295 mm. Sturdy cast iron feet with screw components for easy maintenance. High-quality polished steel cylinders with additional height adjustment for screwing in and out. Automatic overload protection. One-piece or two-piece pump lever. Tested according to the latest European standards.
The Clarke CSJ1500 is a heavy-duty scissor jack ideal for loading and unloading vehicles or machinery.The CSJ1500 has an adjustable height range of 0-600mm with a load capacity of up to 1500kg.
Clarke CSJ1500 1.5Ton Scissor Jack 1.5Ton Scissor Jack. This handy scissor jack is ideal as a replacement for the manufacturer-supplied jack in most vehicles. 1.5-ton lifting capacity. Strong steel construction. Min/max height 95/390 mm.
The Clarke CTJ2000LPB is a low-profile jack with an integrated lifting mechanism. It has an integrated handle, and the lever can be locked in position to prevent accidental movement.
This compact 2-tonne jack is perfect for use on low-floor vehicles. Its steel chassis and castors ensure durability. Strong steel chassis. Easy valve tounlock by turning. Lifting capacity: 2 tons. Saddle height: Min 90 mm. Max 380 mm. Dimensions (L x W x H): 560 x 165 x 135 mm.