Extremely easy to use in a pinch. The stands come with a simple adjustment lever to change the height so you can fit it to your car. The height is adjustable from 11" to 17". Solid handles and self-locking ratchets allow you to work on your vehicle safely.
Too small to confidently use with large and heavier vehicles like large trucks.
Heavy-duty construction for heavier loads of up to six tons. These stands can handle the weight of larger vehicles like heavy-duty trucks when undercarriage maintenance is required. Large area feet won't sink into asphalt,
Jack stands are too heavy to keep in a vehicle for on-the-road use.
Stands each come with a convenient, reliable pivoting lever that locks in place to keep the cradle from falling. The axle cradle fits most vehicles to provide a secure hold. Solid base means you can use these stands even off road.
The jack stands are heavier than other three-ton options.
Pivot handle is easy to force up and down while lifting the vehicle. Lighter construction makes it easy to bring the jack stands on the go for emergencies. Cradle is extra wide for more security.
Smaller build construction makes the stands limited to smaller, lighter cars.
Made of stamped steel for heavy construction and durability. The ratchet bar features extra strength cast iron for heavy loads. Rated to handle heavier vehicles like light duty trucks without issue.
Limited use for heavier, larger vehicles like full-size trucks.
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When it comes to working on your car, there are few products that impact your safety as much as the car jack stand you use. The average car weighs thousands of pounds, so when you jack it up to work underneath it, you need to know it’s going to stay there.
Car jack stands are intended to safely hold a vehicle in a raised position to allow for underbody access, but they don’t actually raise the vehicle itself. For that, you need a reliable scissor jack or a floor jack to raise your vehicle.
To guarantee your safety while working on your vehicle, you need to look carefully at the jack stand specifications. Was it made by a reputable manufacturer? Is it rated for the weight of your vehicle? This is not an area where you should skimp on research or expenditures. Read on to gain valuable advice about choosing the right car jack stand for your needs.
The first thing to consider when choosing a car jack stand is the material it’s made of and how it’s constructed. Most jack stands are made from steel, cast iron, or aluminum. While some individuals like aluminum stands for lightweight work, especially since they weigh less and don’t rust, for the heaviest-duty jobs, you should go with cast iron or steel.
Ideally, each jack stand should be rated to hold three-quarters of your vehicle’s weight on its own. For example, if your vehicle weighs two tons, each of your jack stands should be rated for one-and-a-half tons.
Any time you weld two pieces of metal together, you introduce a weak point. For the strongest jack stands, try to find a model with the fewest number of weld points.
A jack stand’s base area is a two-edged sword. On the one hand, you want a base area as wide as possible for the best stability. On the other hand, in a confined work area, a large base stand can get in the way.
Another thing you should consider is the lift height of the jack stand. How much clearance do you need, and how much do you have room for? It’s one thing to lift up a vehicle high enough to change a tire; it’s another to lift it high enough to have room to spend hours working under it. At the same time, if you have a tall truck or SUV and a low-ceiling garage, you may have concerns about minimum lift height.
Always make sure your jack stands are set and locked at an equal height. If there is a big difference in the height of one jack to the next, you risk the vehicle slipping off.
One of the most important features to look for is how the jack stand adjusts and locks. There are a couple of different types of mechanisms.
Ratchet-style locking mechanisms use an angled bar to hold the stand’s height in place. These mechanisms are simple and fast to use and allow small height adjustments to be made. The only disadvantage is that, in some cases, the rolling pin and pawl (or locking mechanism) can eventually rust through. When this happens, you will have to replace the entire stand.
The second style of jack stand uses a high tensile steel locking pin to hold the jack in place. This type of mechanism doesn’t allow for adjustments as small as the ratchet style, such as to compensate for uneven flooring. The pin, however, is easy to replace if it ever bends, corrodes, or rusts, unlike the ratchet style where the entire jack stand has to be replaced if the mechanism becomes compromised. In general, locking pin jack stands are considered stronger and used for the heaviest work.
Some ratchet-style jack stands have a backup locking pin. The ratchet acts as the primary mechanism, but the locking pin provides added security in the unlikely event that the ratchet mechanism fails.
All vehicles have factory lift points. On unibody vehicles, these points are usually along the pinch welds on the unibody edge. On vehicles with frames, the mount points are on the frame rails. Check your vehicle’s owner manual to find out where its lift points are.
Inexpensive: Entry-level jack stands designed for light use cost less than $50 for a set. They’ll be acceptable for small, compact cars, but you won’t want to use them for a full-size truck or similarly heavy vehicle.
Mid-range: Mid-range jack stands cost $50 to $150 for a set and are suitable for heavier vehicles. You’ll also start to see additional safety features, such as dual-locking mechanisms.
Expensive: High-end jack stands costing more than $150 for a set are designed to be used with the heaviest vehicles and are made from heavy-duty steel or cast iron. The will have official weight ratings and meet U.S. requirements for lifting equipment.
Jack stands with rubber pads on the top post can be useful when working with a unibody vehicle. Sometimes the lift points don’t always line up well with the jack stand’s top post and a rubber top can be used to overcome that.
The OTC 1780 Jack Stand is a heavy-duty set of jack stands that meets all U.S. requirements for lifting equipment. Each stand in the pair is rated for 22 tons of weight and uses a pin-style locking mechanism. The Craftsman 9-50163 4 Ton Jack Stand Pair is a set of four-ton stands featuring a ratchet-style locking mechanism.
Q. Can ratchet-style jack stands collapse or drop in use if the lever is pulled?
A. No. Ratchet-style jack stands are specifically designed so they cannot collapse while under weight. This safety mechanism has been successfully used for decades and has a proven track record.
Q. Should I go for a set of stands with three or four feet?
A. Each has their advantages. Four feet may have a wider base and be more stable. Three feet, on the other hand, can give you more flexibility if there is slight unevenness to the ground.
Q. What if I need to lift my entire vehicle, not just one end?
A. Buy two pairs of jack stands, one for each end. As a rule of thumb, you should have one jack stand for each wheel.
Q. How tall are car jack stands?
A. Most stands are 13 to 25 inches tall, but some can be extended as high as six feet.
Q. How much weight can jack stands hold?
A. The amount of weight jack stands can hold varies from two tons on the low end to 25 tons on the high end.
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