Car Jack is a simple mechanical lifting gear to lift vehicles. There are various types of jacks. Some devices use mechanical advantage to lift, and some devices use hydraulic power to lift. Some car jacks work on pneumatic power. Though there are various types of jacks like a car jack, garage jack, or floor jacks are available, the purpose is the same- “Lifting.” Based on their lifting capacity, they rated it as 1.5 ton Jack or 2.0 ton. There are various types of jacks that include farm jack and stranded Jack. Let us check some of the popular types.
Types of Car Jack
A screw jack is a particular type of Jack operated by rotating the lead screw of it. It is commonly used to lift vehicles and other moderate heavyweights. The screw jack consists of a heavy-duty vertical power screw. In addition, the vertical screw formed with Trapezoidal thread forms to offer high strength and ease to handle.
The vertical screw is fixed into the threaded hole in a wide support frame. The load table is mounted on its top. The rotating collar on the head has holes to insert the handle or metal bar to rotate. The metal bar inserted into the rotating collar should be rotated clockwise to lift the load table. Generally, the Jackscrew has a long handle to turn the collar to raise or lower Jack’s ease.
- The acme thread form employed in Jack’s threads helps it carry a more significant load.
- The Screw Jacks are limited in their lifting capacity
- Lesser Speed
- High Friction, Low efficiency
Scissor jacks are the tools that are used to lift vehicles. The scissor jacks have four metal pieces connected to the ends with bolts. The bolts at the ends allow them to swivel. Besides, the screw thread runs across the diagonal of the four connected pieces. By rotating, the screw of the Jack, it can be raised or lowered easily in a straight line.
When the screw of the gear pulling down or pushing up the arms, the amount of force applied is multiplied; little energy is needed to turn the handle. Therefore it requires lesser effort to lift the load. The screw is designed with Hexa and Penta elements. They are called scissor jacks since they function as a pair of scissors.
The scissor jacks are safe. Besides, they are economical. And they are designed to meet your roadside emergency. More particularly, changing the flat tire or changing the transmission oil of your vehicle. The scissor jack can handle a load of 1 to 15 tons of load, and it can raise it from 15 to 30 inches above the ground.
- Less weight compared with other models
- Lesser number of parts
- Simple assembly
- Distortion avoided due to no welding parts
- Repairing and cleaning is easy
- Replacement of parts are easily available
- Handling is easy
- They can easily slip or collapse.
- A higher degree of maintenance is required.
- The mechanical advantage is proportional to friction. Therefore, proper lubrication is must.
- Additional protection against the environment is necessary to check rusting and corrosion.
The bottle jack resembles the bottle in shape. The other name of it is whiskey jack. They are the popular type of vehicle jack available. They are easy to use. And, they are highly portable. Typical whiskey jack works on screw action. But the latest versions work on hydraulic pressure. Within the bottle-shaped cylindrical body, a vertical lifting ram is fixed.
A support pad is set on the top to place the vehicle firmly on the place. The hydraulic pressure applied by the pump on the base plate act on the lifting ram. The force applied on the lifting ram raises the support pad and thereby lifts the vehicle. Standard bottle jacks have a pump on one side. A handle is provided to pump it manually.
The handles are long to pump up the Jack efficiently. On pumping, the hydraulic pressure drives the piston, which lifts the load. Some of the bottle types are powered by electric air compressors too. Since they are highly portable and easy to use, most mechanics use them. The seal within the bottle jack could fail due to internal pressure and may cause any accidents, so supporting with jack stands is highly advisable while using bottle jacks.
The support pad or the saddle on the top of the lifting ram is tiny. Therefore, the tool must be positioned on a steady surface. Otherwise, the Jack may topple down. Therefore jack stands must be used to support the vehicles to avoid any untoward accidents.
The bottle jacks lift the heavyweight; therefore, it is made up of forged steel. Because of its size, it can be mounted vertically and lift more to a higher height. The lift range of the bottle jacks is between 5 to 9 inches. They are comparatively smaller in size. It can be easily stored in the vehicle for emergency use.
They are cheaper too. The bottle jacks with various weight lifting capacities are available in the market. The higher the capacity, the price will be more. They are suitable for a roadside inspection in case of emergency. If the ground clearance is more than using the bottle model is more comfortable.
- Smaller in size
- Easy to handle
- High portability
- Cannot offer high stability
- Minimum lifting height
- Hydraulic cylinder positioned vertically
Best portable Car Jack for you:
- Pro-Lift B-012D Grey Hydraulic
- Alltrade 640912 Black 3 Ton
- BIG RED T90603B Torin Hydraulic Welded
- Powerbuilt 620471 Unijack
- Torin ATA92006B Pneumatic Air Hydraulic Bottle Jack with Manual Hand Pump
- US JACK D-51124 8 Ton
Pro-Lift B-012D Grey Hydraulic Bottle
Pro-Lift 12 Ton Hydraulic Bottle Jack is ideal for vehicle service, shop, and farm use. Its critical stress areas are heat treated. Therefore it shows extraordinary strength and durability. Its lifting handle ensures easy handling of this tool. The saddle is made of steel to hold the load safe and firmly.
It comes with an extension screw to adjust the height additionally. It comes with the by-pass system to protect against ram over travel. This tool is manufactured in China. In addition, it updated to meet the latest ANSI/PALD Standards. Pro-Lift comes with 90 days warranty. It is industry compliant.
Capacity 12 tons
Lifting height: Max 18-7/8 Inches
Weight of the tool: 18lbs
- Steel Lifting Saddle engineered to hold the load securely
- Heat-treated critical parts for extra strength
- Inbuilt by-pass system to protect against ram over-travel
- Needs Separate Jack-Stands
Alltrade 640912 Black 3 Ton
It is designed to combine bottle jack and Jack stands into one unit. It comes with a safety bar lock unit at the desired height for the convenience of the user. The safety-lock prevents the vehicle from slipping while lifting the car. This portable Jack is designed to lift your car or your truck safely and securely. It is highly durable.
Capacity- 3 tons
Maximum height lift- 21 Inches
Weight- 22 lbs
- Bottle jack/jack stand combine
- Safety Bar Lock Unit
- Best suited for Unibody Car lifting
- No lifting handle
- Portability is an issue (overweight)
BIG RED T90603B Torin Hydraulic Welded Bottle Car Jack
BIG RED T90603B Torin Hydraulic Welded Bottle Jack designed for domestic and commercial use. It is made up of forged alloyed steel for durability and high quality. BIG RED T90603B Torin’s saddle is heat-treated and serrated for a secure grip. Its lifting range is 8-1/2″ to 16-1/4″ with a 6Ton capacity. The top of the head has an adjustable screw for extensions.
It has a glide action pressure pump for less effort of the user. It has an in-built oil by-pass and overload valve that protects the hydraulic system. The inner and outer welded Jack structure delivers leak-free performance. It comes with dust-resistant painting. The BIG RED T90603B Torin meets ASME /PASE safety standards. It includes a limited one-year manufacturer warranty.
Capacity: 6 Tons
Weight: 10.1 lb
Maximum Height Lift: 16-1/4 in
Warranty: 1-Year Limited
- Sectional lifting
- High-quality glide-action pressure pump
- Tough heat-treated extension screw
- Overload Valves
- Adhered to ASME/PASE safety standards
- Almost nil
Powerbuilt 620471 Unijack
Powerbuilt, 6 Ton UniJack, is the only portable Jack designed to lift and hold unibody cars safely. This UniJack combines a bottle jack and a Jack stand. It is easy to raise the Unibody cars and trucks. It meets the ASME/PASE safety standards. The height range is 11 inches to 21 inches. Since it combines both bottle jack and Jack stand together, it eliminates the need for a separate jack stand. It comes with one year warranty.
Capacity: 6 Tons
Weight: 22.7 lbs
Maximum Height Lift: 21 Inch
- Bottle jack/jack stand combine
- ASME/PASE safety standards
- Best suited for Unibody Car lifting
Torin ATA92006B Pneumatic Air Hydraulic Bottle Jack with Manual Hand Pump
Torin ATA92006B Pneumatic lifting tool is best suited for lifting heavy vehicles and industry use. It can easily lift 20 tons of loads to the maximum height of 20-1/16 Inches. You can operate this tool either manually or pneumatically. An automatic dual spring lowering system eases the work of the operator.
The rams are chrome coated and highly polished to enhance the life of the seals. The push-button trigger control unit increases the speed and efficiency of the tool. The safety valve protects it from overloading. It meets ASME and PASE standards. Torin ATA92006B comes with a one-year limited warranty.
Ideal for lifting heavy duty machinery
Load Capacity 20 Tons
Working on both manually and pneumatically
Dual spring control for automatic lowering system
Push-button trigger control for easy and quick operation
The safety valve for overload protection
One-year limited warranty.
- Welded handle grip makes this bottle jack easy to handling
- Meets ASME/ PASE standards
- Chromed cylinder Ram to enhance safety and durability
- Easy to operate
In Bottle jacks, the hydraulic cylinder is positioned vertically. But in floor models, it is fixed horizontally. It is good enough to lift your car more safely and more effortlessly. They are made up of heavy-duty steel. Moreover, the mechanical advantage of floor jack is high compared to bottle type.
They have very low clearance on the ground. Therefore they can be moved freely under the low cars too. The Floor jack always provided with long handles to operate. Thus fast and easy lifting and lowering are possible. They are bulky and occupy more space when compared to other types.
- Ideal for automobile applications
- Various styles and shapes are available
- Easy to use
- Portability is an issue
- Occupy more space
Best Floor Jacks for Your Car:
- Torin Hydraulic Ultra Low Profile Heavy Duty Steel
- Pittsburgh Automotive Heavy-Duty
- Pro-Lift F-2315PE Hydraulic Trolley
- Powerbuilt 2 Ton Xtra Low Profile
- Blackhawk B6350 Black/Red Fast Lift Service
- Arcan Floor Jack
- Powerzone 3 Ton
Torin Hydraulic Ultra Low Profile Heavy Duty Steel Car Jack
Torin Hydraulic Ultra low profile heavy-duty lifting tool is a long-lasting, versatile one. It is patented Quad-Trak Ultra-Low Profile Jack for better clearance. Its maximum lifting height is 20 Inches. Most Garage owners prefer its low profile design.
Its load control adjustment helps you to achieve the preferred lifting height. It is made up of heavy-duty steel reinforces for more stability and strength. It comes with a two-piece quick-release extended handle for good efficiency and leverage.
Because of its low profile design, it can reach the remote lifting points with ease. Its in-built overload protection safety mechanism provides additional safety. It meets ASME/ PASE standards.
Constructed with heavy-duty steel
Low profile design
Single Piston Quick Lift Pump
It comes with a Load Control adjustment.
Manufactured with heavy-duty steel and reinforced for extra stability and strength
Dual-action controls-By both hand and foot
Safety by-pass system prevents over-loading
Fitted with 360-degree turn round casters for smooth maneuverability
Powder-coated for rust resistance and durability.
- Magnetic tray
- Overload protection
- Meets ASME/ PASE standards
- One year Warranty
- No Pump By-pass
Pittsburgh Automotive Heavy-Duty Car Jack
Pittsburgh Automotive 3 Ton Heavy Duty Ultra Low Profile Steel Floor Jack with Rapid Pump Quick Lift is a very easy-to-use tool. And it is durable. It comes with exclusive dual parallel pump system lifts with far fewer pumps. Besides, it has a universal joint release that provides precise load control in any handle position. It has extra-wide steel casters for stability.
Ultra-Low Profile Steel Jack
With Rapid pump for a quick lift
Knurled aluminum handle
Maximum lifting height 14-3/4 inches
- Ultra low profile
- Lifting height is significantly less compared with similar products.
Pro-Lift F-2315PE Hydraulic Trolley Car Jack
Pro-Lift F-2315PE Hydraulic is an all-welded steel frame construction lifting tool. It is rust-resistant. Pro-Lift has large, swivels casters for easy maneuverability. Moreover, it is compact and has easy to use safe design. It comes with a blow mold case for easy storage.
Maximum height lifting 11.81 Inches
All welded steel frame constructions with rust-resistant
Rugged housing and titanium hammer case
- Have sturdy carrying handle
- Large Steel swivel casters for easy maneuverability
- Small in size
- Need additional support for reliability
Powerbuilt 2 Ton Xtra Low Profile
Powerbuilt 2 Ton Xtra Low Profile lifting equipment is best suited for all vehicles. It can lift your car for a maximum height of rising to 15-1/2 inches. It includes a steel safety bar that slides under the lift arm to secure Jack’s position in a raised position. Powerbuilt has ball-bearing swivel casters for easy maneuvering of the tool. In addition, It fulfills the required ASME/ANSI standards.
Super low profile design fits all types of vehicles.
Locking safety bar supports lifted load.
- Fitted with safety bar
- One year warranty
Blackhawk B6350 Black/Red Fast Lift Service
Blackhawk B6350 Black/Red Fast Lift Service Jack is one of the most popular lifting tools reviewed by most online communities. The saddle comes with rubber padding for extra grip. It has an internal safety valve for overload protection. It is completely made of steel for durability. The maximum height lifting capacity is 22 inches.
Maximum lifting capacity 3.5 tons
Made of heavy-duty steel
By-pass device for over pumping
It comes with an internal safety valve.
- Fast lifting technology
- Easy lifting
- Extra safety features
- No side handles for easy portability
Arcan Floor Jack
Arcan Floor Jack is a Professional Grade Aluminum and Steel Service tool. It is manufactured in China. It comes with a Reinforced lift arm for added strength. In addition, it has chassis torsion control for more durability. Arcan comes with a dual-piston pump for quick lifting.
Moreover, It has by-pass and overload valves to prevent over-extension of hydraulic Ram and for protection from overload.However, It can reach a maximum height of 19.4 inches. It comes with ball bearing-mounted rear swivel caster wheels, and wide track front wheels provide easy maneuverability.
3-Ton lift capacity
Dual pump pistons for quick rising
By-pass and overload valves for protection and safety
Quick-lock feature for engagement and disengagement
Robust, lightweight aluminum construction
The saddle pad protects the car’s frame
One year warranty
- Quick and easy lifting
- Added safety and protection
- Dual return springs
- Side handles for easy handling
Powerzone 3 Ton
Powerzone 3 Ton is one of the best affordable car jacks. Since it is an aluminum jack, it weighs very much less. It lifts the weight to the maximum height of 18.25 inches. It comes with by-pass and overload valves to prevent overextension.
3-Ton lift capacity
Lifting height 18.25 Inches
- Easy handling
- Loosen bolt and nuts
More Things to Know:
There are other types of Pneumatic Jacks like Air hydraulic; inflating jacks are there. The Air Hydraulic Jack is a pneumatic jack that is actuated by compressed air. Instead of actuating the mechanism manually, the hydraulic pressure does things with less effort, with potentially high speed. At the same time, an inflatable jack is a lifting airbag that is inflated by compressed air.
It is working without the hydraulic components. They are reusable. Using inflatable jacks needs greater precaution. If it is not appropriately used, the lifting bag may shoot out and can create more chaos.
Precautions to be taken:
Only use the car jacks on a flat and leveled surface. Because of their instability sand and gravel surface, use the it with at most care. Do not forget to use wheel chokes and jack stands for safety. Use your car jacks at the jack points on the Chassis alone. If you do not know the jack points for your car, then refer to your user manual. Do not forget to apply a car hand brake when you are attending work under your vehicle.
OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) laid down specific regulations and safety standards applicable to all hand and portable power tools like Car Jacks. Most of the time, the Jack collapsed due to various reasons like lifting beyond the capacity, load slipping and placing it on an irregular surface, etc. Hence OSHA stipulated certain norms and rules for user’s safety:
- The rating of the lifting equipment must be more or equal to the weight of the load.
- Always fix the Jack on a flat and leveled surface. If needed, provide some foundation.
- To avoid slippage, place a wooden blank between the load table and the load.
- The user must not raise the Jack and exceed the height limit mentioned.
- Use the jacks only at designated lifting points.
- Once the load rose to the desired level, the Jack must be cribbed or locked for safety.
- Do not forget us wheel choke while attending your automobile with Jack.
- Do not load the Jack for a long time; instead, use Jack stands for maximum safety.
- If jack stands are not available, the load should be replaced by rigid supports.
- While using hydraulic Jack at freezing temperature, do not forget to feed with sufficient anti-freezing liquid.
- All jacks must be properly lubricated and maintained for the safety of the user.
- Repaired or replaces parts must be thoroughly checked.
- Malfunctioning jacks must be tagged and removed from the service.
Safety standards of Jacks:
There are specific safety standards prescribed for each type of Jack. It must adhere to the American National Standard Institute /American Society of Mechanical Engineers ANSI/ASME PALD-1993 Parts 1 through 15 & 17) Portable Automotive Lifting Devices.
Car Jack Buying Guide:
You may find plenty of the best car jacks available in Amazon, Walmart, AutoZone, and Google Stores but selecting the right kind of car jack portable is cumbersome for an ordinary person. Here, we documented some crucial points to be considered while buying a car jack or a jack stand. I hope that will ease your work of selecting the right one best suited for your need.
The material of which the Jack is made up is another essential factor to consider. Most of the high-quality portable jacks are made up of the best steel alloys. These high-quality steel alloys can handle heavy loads very well. They withstand, and they either won’t break or bent easily. They come with extra anti-rusting and protective coatings to ensure protection against rusting and corrosion for more durability. Thus, these coatings improve the life of the Jack.
Vehicle Load compatibility:
Before buying a car jack, make sure it is compatibles with your car model. Refer to your user manual of the company to make sure. Since all jacks are not compatible, each one specific calibration and load capacity.
Types of Portable Car Jacks and Their Merits and Demerits:
There are so many types of portable jacks are available in the market. They are
- Bottle Jacks
- Scissor Jacks
- Floor Jacks otherwise called Trolley Jacks.
The most compact model is the bottle type and Scissor type. The scissor jack is nothing but a very simple Toggle Jack. It is more straightforward in design. It is smooth and very quiet in operation. Provide high efficiency with minimum effort. The power transmission is the minimum possible.
Checking, cleaning, and repairing the scissor jack is effortless. Since they are collapsible, they occupy less space in the boot. Therefore transportation is easy. They do not come with overload protection.
Consequently, it is risky to use them for long-time lifting. They are lightweight when compared to the other types of jacks. A higher degree of maintenance is required.
Bottle jacks are affordable. They are ideal and convenient because of the clearance. In addition, they are highly portable and easy to use. Moreover, they are lighter than floor jacks.
Floor jacks have broader space when compared with scissor and bottle models. Therefore load is evenly distributed to the wide area. Hence it has high stability than any other models. Though, they are a little more expensive than the scissor type. It will work long last with minimum maintenance.
Though they are heavy, it is easily maneuverable because of the wheels attached to the base. Because of their low profile, they sit low to the ground level. Therefore they are best for vehicles that have very low clearance. Since they are coming with a long handle, it is easy to operate.
You need to select your Jack according to the weight of your vehicle. Your SUV should not be lifted with 1.0-ton capacity, Jack. Therefore be sure about the load rating requirement based on your need.
Most of the accidents happen because of jack failure; therefore, go with the better one having overload protection and a safety valve.
The most compact portable jacks are a little bit pricy but worth the money spent. If you have a tight budget and have a lightweight vehicle, you may opt for a scissor or bottle model.
Frequently Asked Questions:
What is the best car jack to buy?
Floor Jack Best Buy: Torin Hydraulic Ultra Low Profile Heavy Duty Steel Floor Jack
Bottle Jack Best Buy: Torin ATA92006B Pneumatic Air Hydraulic Bottle Jack with Manual Hand Pump
Scissor Jack Best Buy: Husky 76862 Stabilizing Scissor Jack
What is a jack for a car?
Car Jack is a simple mechanical lifting gear to lift your car. There are various types of lifting jacks. In addition, Some devices use mechanical advantage to lift, and some machines use hydraulic power to lift. However, some car jacks work on pneumatic power too.
Are all car jacks the same?
No, all car jacks are not the same. There are three types of jacks, namely bottle, scissor, and floor Jack. Each one, relay on a different method and principle to lift. But all are utilizing mechanical advantage to lift the car.
What is the best car jack to buy?
The best Jack to buy depends on various factors:
- Your requirement
Therefore the best one purely depends on your need. Based on various online inputs, here are the following best three.
- Floor Jack to Best Buy: Torin Hydraulic Ultra Low Profile Heavy Duty Steel Floor Jack
- Best Bottle Jack Best Buy: Torin ATA92006B Pneumatic Air Hydraulic Bottle Jack with Manual Hand Pump
- Best Scissor Jack to Buy: Husky 76862 Stabilizing Scissor Jack
Are all car jacks the same?
No, all car jacks are not the same, but all functions on the same principle: Mechanical Advantage,” and the purpose is the same lifting the car. But there are three main types of car jacks available in the market. They are bottle, scissors, and floor types. The latest type of jacks employs hydraulic pressure or pneumatic pressure to lift.
Will any jack work on any car?
No, every Jack has a specific lifting height and maximum lifting load capacity. Therefore you cannot employ some jacks with the lowest ground clearance cars. If your vehicle is of SUV type, you have to opt for the jacks with equal or higher capacity than the SUV weight.
But in general, most of the time, the scissor jacks can be employed.
Are electric car jacks any good?
Electric car jack works with electric power. It works more quickly than the manual jacks. But they are heavy. It needs electric power to operate. You need not crank your lifting tool manually. Their price varies from 30$ to 300$ depends on the type and the brand you are opting for.
How long can a jack hold a car?
Jacks are meant for lifting a car. Therefore it is not advisable to keep Jack holding your car for a long time. Most of the time, the Jack topple or fail may result in an accident; therefore, it is not advisable to keep your vehicle on Jack for a long time. If you need to keep them for long, then support the Jack with the Jack stands for safety.
How do you jack up your car without a jack?
Just loosen the wheel bolts first. Lift the car to the maximum possible height with some physical support. You can easily lift it to the suspension height. Once raised to the maximum possible height, support it with a jack stand at the jack point. Now replace the wheel which is to be replaced.
What are the jack points on the Jack?
There are reinforced metal ribs placed at some critical places in the undercarriage and Sill Panel. They are reliable, and it is safe to lift the car using your Jack here. Therefore, they are called jack points. The following are the jack points available in every car. They are near the front wheels, back wheels, rear differential, rear and front cross members, and both sides of the body.
What is a Jack Stand?
The jack stands do not lift the cars, but they offer rigid support to the lifted car. The jack stands are tower-shape equipment. They provide additional support when lifting your vehicle with the jacks. The jack stands support the full weight of your car when they placed under specific points of the car ear-marked for placing them to support.
The stands offer extra safety and security to the car and the mechanic working under the car.
Are car jack stands safe?
You cannot fully rely on your carjacks; sometimes, they may fail. Moreover, you should not support your vehicle with the support of a jack for a long time. Therefore the jack stands are handy to offer extra support and safety for your car and the technician working under the Chassis.
What are wheel chocks?
Wheel chocks are nothing but wooden or metal wedges placed closely against the car tires to avoid the wheel’s untoward movement, which may destabilize the Jack as Jack stands supporting the car, which the mechanic attends.
Why are Wheel Chocks important?
While the mechanic is attending your car, the vehicle may roll on various reasons; to avoid unnecessary car movement, it is important to keep the wheel chocks beneath the car wheels against it. Besides, do not forget to apply the hand brake. The chocks avoid unexpected movement of the car; therefore, it is important to place wheel chocks when a mechanic attends your vehicle or it is parked on a slope in addition to the hand brake.
- Use the Wheel chocks in pairs against the wheels.
- The wheel chocks must in contact with the wheels firmly.
- On downhill slopes, Place the wheel chocks below the front wheels.
- On uphill slopes, place the the wheel chocks below the rear wheels in pair.
Radial tires are more flexible than bias-ply tires; therefore, extra precaution must be taken when wheel chocks are employed with them.
How to Bleed a Jack?
When air get inside the Jack hydraulic system, they could not work efficiently. There fore you need to remove the air trapped inside the Jack. The Process of removing air from the jack is called Jack Bleeding. It is very easy to bleed, refer the user manual and follow these simple steps to bleed your jack.
- Clean the outer surface of the Jack with clean cloth
- Open the Release/Bleed Valve by turning it in anti clockwise direction
- Pump the jack for ten or twenty times with the help of the handle
- This will push out the trapped air through the bleed valve
- Check the oil level once the Jack is Bleed.
- Close the Bleed Valve tightly.
- Pump the jack for ten or twenty times with the help of the handle to check whether it is working properly.
- Test the Jack with the proper load.
(Note: If needed repeat the bleeding process for few more time until it work properly.)