If you’re serious about getting your hands on the highest quality floor jack, the kind of floor jack that makes working on your car a whole lot easier than it would have been without one, you’re going to want to be sure that you are taking advantage of the inside information we have for you below.
All of the mechanical knowledge, savvy, and expertise isn’t going to amount to all that much unless you have the right tools at your disposal. That’s why you want to make sure that you buy the best floor jack available to give yourself every opportunity to work more comfortably, more efficiently, and (maybe most importantly) more safely.
Types of Jacks
Hydraulic Floor Jack
This type of jack is very common because of its ease of use. There is a chamber, usually filled with oil. Oil is in common use as the hydraulic fluid because it’s cheap and lubricates the hydraulic chamber.
When the plunger is pulled back, oil is withdrawn from a storage tank into the chamber. A ball check valve prevents oil from re-entering the storage tank. Next the plunger is pushed forward which increases the pressure in the oil. This increased pressure causes the lift arm to begin rising. The lift arm position is held by another ball check valve so that the arm remains lifted until a release valve is opened.
A scissor jack is very often provided in automobile for lifting one side of a car so that a tire can be changed.
While inexpensive, it is powered by hand and usually requires a good amount of effort to get an auto wheel off the ground.
A scissor jack is also fairly small in size, so it can easily be stored in most automobile trunk space.
The action is simple; a crank (often foldable) is inserted into a slot and then is rotated. This causes the screw to pull the sides of the jack toward the middle, lifting the vehicle.
Bottle Jack/Piston Jack
A bottle jack gets it’s name from the shape, obviously.
These jacks can be extremely powerful, sometimes being rated at over 50 tons.
Since they stand vertically, a bottle jack needs a good amount of clearance to be useful. They are of limited usefulness for automobiles because of being needing such clearance.
The operation is like a floor jack hydraulics except it stands up.
Here are just a couple of things to consider before you buy a floor jack
To get your hands on the best floor jack available, you’re going to need to focus in on a couple of key features before you take the plunge and purchase one of these products. Here are just a couple of the most important ones that you want to zero in on.
Understanding lift capacity
It’s going to be absolutely impossible for you to get as much use and utility out of your floor jack without purchasing one that offers the kind of lift capacity you need on a regular basis.
The overwhelming majority of “standard” floor jacks offer between 2 tons and 3 tons of lift capacity, though you might also be able to come across a couple of floor jacks that are a bit beefier – offering upwards of five, six, and even eight or more tons of lift capacity.
Lift capacity, however, isn’t the be-all, end-all of the factors you need to look for in the best floor jack.
Make sure that the lift height is appropriate
You’ll also need to make sure that your jack has the right lift height rating to go with that lift capacity.
The overwhelming majority of floor jacks that you are going to have the opportunity to get your hands on aren’t going to have lift ratings all that much higher than say 21 inches or so – especially if they are rated for up to 3 tons of capacity.
Any higher than that – or any heavier than that – and you’re looking at a pretty risky proposition.
Of course, there are ways to increase the lift height of these jacks while increasing their utility. A wider base, a more stable frame, and a handful of other features allow floor jacks to go even higher than 21 inches without compromising safety.
Choosing the right construction material
Most floor jacks – the best ones, anyway – used to be made out of cast-iron or heavy stainless structural steel material. Some of the top floor jacks are manufactured out of that material today, but a lot of them now take advantage of incredibly strong aluminum or aluminum alloys and lightweight steel designed and engineered specifically to produce better weight capacities and more reliability.
Speed is always of the essence!
At the end of the day, you’re going to want to spend a lot less time using your floor jack and a lot more time working on your vehicle. You’ll want to be to get your vehicle up and down just as quickly as possible (when you want to go up and down, that is), and to do that you’re going to want to take advantage of the best floor jack with the best speed rating.
Double piston pumps and a handful of other mechanisms (most of them hydraulic) are going to make your floor jack a lot more convenient to use.
All things considered, it’s going to be a lot easier to get your hands on the best floor jack available if you use the inside information we’ve broken down for you above. Just make sure that you know exactly what you’re going to be using this jack for (most often, anyway) and you’ll be all right!
How to Properly Use a Floor Jack
A Floor jack or car jack is one of the most common tools present in a well-equipped garage and car service centers. This device is used for lifting cars, trucks and all kind of vehicles. Depending upon the type of vehicles and their weight you can choose appropriate car jacks. The most commonly used car jacks belong to two categories- mechanical and hydraulic. Each type employs special technique and different mechanisms to lift vehicles; some require extra effort, whereas, the other type does a great job using a little effort. Today we will learn how to lift vehicles using a floor jack.
Do’s and Dont’s
Before you learn using a car jack, secure your car, check the gear and brakes; avoid putting your head below the raised vehicle. Always check the surface, it should be flat, an uneven surface is not ideal.
How to Use Hydraulic Jacks
Hydraulic jacks are most preferred because they provide excellent service. It uses Pascal’s theory to apply less pressure and generating greater force. If there is a small cylinder interconnected to a big cylinder, and there is a small force applied to the small cylinder it will create pressure; this pressure is also same in the large cylinder but because there is a larger area in the big cylinder it will create a larger force.
Using this method the hydraulic jacks very efficiently lift vehicles. Hydraulic jacks come in different sizes and capacities. All over, they have a compact shape and the smaller version of the bottle jacks are easy to carry. There are two types of hydraulic jacks, namely the bottle hydraulic jack and trolley or floor jacks.
A bottle jack looks small but has the capacity to lift your vehicles very efficiently. Apply handbrake in your vehicle and check the gear, it should not be neutral. Bring the bottle jack, fit the pump handle, and check the release valve. You can tighten it using the handle by rotating it clockwise. Now fix the handle in the socket and pump it applying force vertically. After the saddle is raised to the desired position, keep it below your car near the wheel. Pump and raise more height and lift your car.
To use a trolley jack, close the valve. Now you fit the handle in the socket fix it by rotating it clockwise. Now you apply force with the help of the handle and the saddle will raise the car. It is very important to watch the wheels that the jack doesn’t sleep. Make sure the surface is even and firm. You may want to obstruct the wheels to stop them from moving.
How to Use Mechanical Jacks
Mechanical jacks are of two types, screw jacks and scissor jacks. If you have a scissor jack, you will notice a screw with square threads is connecting the lifting arms. Fix the crack handle in the hole and rotate the screw clockwise and the lifting arms will come close to each other to gain height and life the vehicle. Similarly, a screw jack employs the same method of lifting, but the screw is positioned vertically in this case.
Using a floor jack does not require special skills. Anyone can try the steps following safety guidelines and finish basic jobs like fixing a flat tire, changing oil etc. It is recommended that you check the car jacks regularly for leakage and strength factors. Enjoy doing it yourself and maintain safety.