Jack stands are always used in pairs, and they are a remarkable piece of invention. Using the right capacity and appropriate jack stands, working under your car will keep you safer. Additionally, jack stands will keep your car hanging in the air when you have to do some routine maintenance or reparations beneath your car. Once the vehicle is high enough after having lifted by a floor stand, it’s the jack stands that stay standing and bolster up the car while you do the works underneath.
In this article, we will show you a review of 5 of the finest and best jack stands in the market today and choose the one that stands out. If you don’t have one right now or you want to replace your aging pair, better to read this before you buy! But first, know some facts about this wonderful machinery.
What do jack stands do?
Jack stands are used to keep your car propped up while you do some works or routine maintenance like checking the transmission, replacing a crankshaft main seal (3), and other works underneath the car. They are used after a floor jack lifts the part of the car where you are going to do the maintenance. These jack stands to support the weight of the vehicle while the car’s other wheels remain in the ground.
You can still use these stands to keep the whole car afloat if needed be (you will be needing 4 of this device, but this seldom happens). The jack stands should be put side by side on a solid and level surface (not on an inclined plane) to support the vehicle’s rigid part (like the chassis) and to prevent the car from rolling over while you do the maintenance. Experts’ advice that you rather put wheel chocks (wooden wedges are great alternatives) on both sides of the tires at the other end of the car that you will not be working on.
Putting wheel chocks will ensure that the car will not roll over under any circumstances. After making sure that everything is balanced, you can pick the most appropriate position for the jack stands (or consult your manual for the perfect jack points) to support the weight of the car you are going to work into.
Jack points, by the way, are the spots underneath the vehicle that is primarily designed to be sturdy enough to hold the weight of the car while it is lifted.
Difference between a jack and a jack stand
Jacks come in different types, which include the scissor type, hydraulic jack, hydraulic bottle jack, and the high-lift jack. On the other hand, jack stands come in fixed and adjustable types. The most common jack stands and the one preferred by seasoned mechanics and car lovers that are available today in the market are the adjustable types.
You can’t use a jack stand to lift a vehicle, it is advisable that you use the floor jack in lifting the vehicle that you will work on too, then position the stands in the proper location under the vehicle. Floor jacks typically have wheels for easy handling, has a round top, and they are designed to hoist a vehicle and not as a durable support device for a long duration of maintenance. Additionally, as another experts’ advice, a floor jack should only be used to hoist the car from the ground while the jack stands must be used to hold the vehicle in place.
The jack stands are the perfect fit for this job, they have a rigid body, with saddle shaped top and do not move unless on an unbalanced surface. Jack stands usually come in various capacity for family cars, such as 1-, 1.5-, 2-, and 3-ton capability. This means that a pair of jack stands with 1-ton capacity each can lift a vehicle that has a 2-ton weight, and so on and so forth.
Effective and safe ways of using jack stands
Jacks stands could be a friend or a foe. The wrong use of this device could spell disaster to users. This type of jack is not commonly used to change tires, like the floor jack. To make the stand more durable and safe both for the user and the car, they must be always used in pair.
Make sure that the stands fit tightly underneath the vehicle and place in the right jack points. Also, ensure that the surface that they are standing is flat, solid, free of debris, and not slippery. After installing the jack stands, make sure that the stands are rigid by testing it by your hands.
Moreover, expert mechanics strongly suggest that using adjustable jack stands are more reliable and can perform various functions compared to a fixed one.
Factors to consider in choosing jack stands
If you have a heavier vehicle, it is just proper that you choose jack stands with higher capacity, and vice-versa.
Don’t pick stands that are fixed. You may not know what you will be driving in the future. Additionally, fixed stands are not portable, you can’t use this type anywhere.
While the price might be your last option, see first the traits and qualities of the brand you are thinking of before you make the final decision.
- Safety features
Utmost safety must be your priority before anything else. Look for a brand that offers the maximum safety features.
Seasoned mechanics and the professionals are unanimous in declaring that the best material for jack stands is steel or cast iron. So, don’t settle for anything less.
5 Best Jack Stands in the 2017 Market- a Review
Do you want to ask our choice for the best jack stands to buy right now? Don’t be surprised, but we just picked the Hein-Werner HW93506 Jack Stands with a 6-ton capacity. We certainly admire and trust the Hein-Werner’s safety features, their durability and rigid steel frame, larger capacity, and they are being adjustable although they cost higher than the others. So, what the heck?
We guess that everyone prefers a safer environment even if you have to spare some precious cash. But still, utmost safety is truly priceless!
And lastly, if you have a fleet of cars which have different weight, you can surely use this pair in all of them. Well, in case that you have only a light truck or a sedan right now, there is a great possibility that you might upgrade to a much larger vehicle in the near future, so this duo of a stand could still be usable. Nice logic, isn’t it?