How to choose a car jack

Currently, buying a car jack is not difficult, since the market is saturated to the limit with the relevant product. It is much harder to make the final choice in favor of a particular model. It always happens when a potential buyer is faced with a wide offer. And always try to convince him that this particular model is vital.

Jacking device

Jacking device scheme.

Therefore, you should align your desires with the capabilities of the product in order to finally make your choice. First of all, let's define the question: what qualities of this tool will we consider to be the main ones.

Main parameters and characteristics

For any car owner the main qualities of the jack will be:

  • minimum dimensions;
  • maximum ease of operation, transportation and storage;
  • reliability.

In terms of technical characteristics, they also differ in the following qualities:

Table of characteristics of jacks

Table of characteristics of jacks.

  • load capacity, in the technical passport of the product it is indicated in kilograms or tons and determines the upper limit of the weight for which the lift is guaranteed;
  • the maximum lift height, this characteristic for many users is the main parameter, it determines the upper limit of the lift of the car;
  • working stroke, this characteristic shows the difference between the extreme lower and upper levels of the pickup position.

Pickup is called the working part of the tool, designed to rest in the car.

And now it is worth considering the main types of products and carry out the compliance of their technical parameters with your wishes.

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Screw jack

The screw car jack is the simplest in terms of design. As a supporting structure in such a product a steel case is used, inside which a screw is located. Such a unit works simply: you rotate the actuating handle, the rotation is transmitted to the screw, which, in turn, is screwed into the body of the lifting element (bar). Simply put, this is the usual Archimedes screw: simple and reliable.

The principle of the screw jack

The principle of the screw jack.

The screw version is distinguished by a stable effort that must be applied to the driving handle, which makes the work of lifting the car very convenient. There are also other advantages here: a high lift height and a fairly decent carrying capacity. The disadvantages are small footprint and pickup. These minuses car owners level due to the fact that they put under the support and grab the plank. But this approach greatly reduces the safety of using the jack.

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Rack jack

Rack-type car jack can surprise you not only with its dimensions (this is their main drawback), but also with its technical characteristics. Judge for yourself: such a jack is able to lift a weight of about 2 tons or more to a height of about one meter. The height depends on the length of the rail.

And the convenience of operation is also present here: the efforts made will be the same throughout the whole climb, the support is reliable. For pickup, a group of nozzles is provided, which maximally adapts it to any car brand. Car owners prefer to choose a rack-type jack for use in garage repairs. On the road, as a rule, such a jack is not taken because of its impressive size.

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Lever-screw option

Jack classification

The classification of jacks.

The “road” devices can be easily attributed to the jacks of the lever-screw type: the small size and weight allow you to comfortably fit the device in the trunk of most cars.

In fact, such jacks are in many ways inferior to other types of products: their design is not entirely reliable, their carrying capacity and maximum lifting height are expressed in numbers quite modestly. For a car with a large mass of such a jack does not fit. And for replacing the wheel in a middle-class car in road conditions, the mentioned jack will fit perfectly. This is due to its popularity. One more minus should be noted: jacks of lever-screw type require great physical effort from the user at the initial stage of lifting.

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Hydraulic jacking mechanism

Hydraulic jacks are very reliable in operation: good stability, large footprint, high lifting capacity and a decent maximum lift height. But there are flaws that have not made such jacks bestsellers. First of all, these are large dimensions of the device and the same decent weight. For female drivers such a jack is not suitable at all. Yes, and men prefer other designs, as hydraulic jacks during transportation should be only in the vertical (working) position. They require periodic maintenance, as there is a number of valves. As a lift when used in garage conditions, the hydraulic jack is the only leader.

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Rhombic and rolling jack

The device of the hydraulic rolling jack

The device of the hydraulic rolling jack.

Universal can be considered a jack of the rhombic type. The large footprint and wide pickup make it very reliable in use. Four levers, interconnected by means of hinges, make the design very rigid and reliable. The principle of operation is also very simple: you rotate the screw by means of the handle, it is screwed into the moving parts of the structure, which have multidirectional threads. When rotating in one direction, the convergence of opposite parts of the structure occurs, due to which its vertical parts are removed. Lifting height and maximum load depend on the size of the product itself, therefore, rhombic type car jacks can be selected for almost any car. The overall dimensions of these jacks are not very high, so the products can be conveniently placed in the trunk and have a reliable and safe lift on the road.

Automobile jacks of rolling type are used only in the conditions of stationary repair in the garage or at service stations. Of course, it is convenient to use them, since they differ in a large area of ​​support, but for this it is necessary to have an absolutely horizontal surface. If there is even a slight slope, the wheel locks do not withstand the load, and the raised car can move in the direction of the slope. In road conditions such jacks are not recommended.

The described design features of jacks should, to a certain extent, answer the question of how to choose a jack. Of course, you decide. And personally, you need to decide which of the parameters to consider the most important.

But the main thing - to choose a car jack reliable and safe to use.

The price of the product here is not at all an indicator of high quality and reliability. Rather, it shows the cost of production, which directly depend on the complexity of the manufacturing process.

So, the most expensive will most likely be a hydraulic jack. And this, as you may have guessed, does not make it the most reliable and convenient. To navigate the price will be stupid. But to buy car jacks cheaper too wrong.

Ideally, you should have two jacks: one for use in the garage, the second for use on the road. And let your road be such that the jack is almost never used!

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