Is It Safe To Jack Up One Side Of A Car?

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Jacking up a car may become necessary when you have a flat tire that you must change or you have work to be carried out under its chassis. There are various types of jacks ranging from floor jacks, light-duty jacks, or jacks that operate with round tubing,  which are usually very cheap and unreliable.

So is it safe to jack up one side of a car? Jacking up one side of a car obviously could mean either of two things, which are on the right or left or front and back of the car. Essentially, it is better to jack it up ( with a powerful jack such as this Electric Hydraulic Floor Jack) on either the front or back as against the left or right because when you jack up either the left or right, the pinch weld pivot may fold as it operates lengthwise,  but with any of front or back, the stands can be put beneath the axle or suspension arms which are roundish and solid parts.

In essence, the stands can turn on top of the jack stands as you lift the car which is a more stable situation. In this way, the stands are not likely to tip if you go about it carefully on a solid surface. Note that with a floor jack, the wheel is liable to slide as the lifting arm of the jack extends.

Be sure to use the light-duty jack that comes with the car to change the wheel in case of having a flat tire.  But, never use them for anything else and be careful even at that, since the car can fall off in the process with possible dire consequences.

Where Is It Safe To Jack Up A Car?

The safest places to jack up a car are either the cross members or beneath the diff pumpkin. Although it is possible to jack up a car on any of its left or right sides, it is much better to do so from either the front or back of the car which accords greater stability. In jacking up any car, do so where steel structures meet which are renowned for their strength such as the part of the chassis rail to the rear of the support pad. (Read Also:Can Air Compressor Tanks Be welded?)

The head plate of the jack which is that part of it that bears the weight of the vehicle must sit squarely under the jacking point and the load.

The cross members and diff pumpkins are places that are good as jacking locations. Support stand placements must go beneath strong structures and never sheet metal. Any car part that you can dent with a hammer is not good enough to act as the jacking point of a car.

Look out for suspension components and where gearbox cross members fit into the main structure of the car are good jacking points. Flat and level sections are good and the closer they are to the wheel the better suited too.(Read Also:Will Tire Chains Damage Driveway?Find Out)

As a rule of thumb, never jack up a car on anything except on level and flat ground which preferably should be concrete structures. Note, even the firmest surfaces despite reinforcements with bricks or planks can still give way unexpectedly with lethal consequences, so be as careful as possible with this bit.

Where Should You Not Jack Up A Car?

Do not jack up a car at any place other than the designated places suited for this purpose which are the points where the jack engages. With most cars, the jacking points are made of reinforced steel that will support the car safely. The four jacking points of a car are under the rocker panels just behind the front wheels and in front of the rare wheels.

To be certain about exactly where these points are, you should consult the user manual supplied with the car or consult your tire specialist. Never jack up the car anywhere besides these points of re-inforced metal.

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Can You Use Only One Jack Stand To Jack Up A Car?

First of all, what is a jack stand? Simply put, a jack stand is that strong object placed under the rocker panel of the vehicle beside or near the jack if you are going to slip underneath the car for whatever reason. The jack stand is meant to protect you as you work under the car should the car slip away from the jack and fall off it.

Put in another way, the jack stand is that protection which is taken to make sure the car doesn’t come crashing on you should it slide off the jack. The jack stand is made to save your life. Well, one jack stand is enough, but should you need to move from one end of the car to another underneath as you work, then an extra stand is advisable.(Read Also: Will Snow Chains Damage Rims?Find Out NOw)

After all, putting up an extra jack stand impedes nothing and takes little effort but remains on guard to protect your life. So, by all means, if you need an extra jack stand, set it up. You can never be too careful, right?

How Do You Jack Up A Car With A Floor Jack?

 
We shall go about this discussion in consecutive steps for easy comprehension.

Step 1

Before you embark on jacking up a car, find a safe location, and pull over to avoid accidents with other vehicles on the busy road. Make sure that the place you find will do just nicely so that the jack wouldn’t sink into the ground or bend at an angle.

Step 2

Secure the vehicle by cutting off the engine and engaging the parking brake. Additionally, you may use a heavy stone or tough boulder to block a tire by placing it under the tire at the opposite end of the car. This is an insurance against the car rolling off the jack as you work on it. Where there are passengers, get them to exit the vehicle.

Step 3

Identify the jacking points. These are the points with re-inforced steel that are safe for lifting up the car which is mostly found behind the front wheels and in front of the rear wheels. The car’s user manual can be of help in exactly locating where these points are sited should your car have a different setup.

Step 4

Put the jack in place. Jacks have a slot at the top, on their engagement flanges, which slips onto its point’s strong rib. Should your car have a different setup, check the user’s manual.

Step 5

This step involves jacking up the car by slowly turning the handle clockwise until the tyre lifts off the ground. Ensure that the jack remains positioned straight up and down as it rises. The jack must not lean in the process and if you are going underneath it, please be sure that you have a jack stand in place before sliding under the car. This is to protect you from getting crushed should the car fall off the jack while you are still under it.

Step 6

Lower down the car slowly after you are done by unwinding the jack handle in the opposite direction or anticlockwise until the tire is safely on the ground before removing the jack. Thereafter, return the jack to its place of storage and you are ready to move on, but not before you remove anything used to block the tires.

What Are Some Of The Best Car Jack To Buy In The Market?

The jack is a most essential tool for all car owners and ideally, everybody must keep one in their trunk for impromptu needs, but be sure to have the right kind of jack. We shall give you an in-depth review of some of the best car jacks on the market.(Read Also: Can I Use Tire Jack To Change oil?Find Out)

These jacks come with such enviable features that selection may not really be easy because each of them has unique characteristics, but when you put your vehicle type and its weight into consideration, you will eventually make a befitting choice. These jacks are available for purchase at the links we shall provide.

1. Marchlnn 12V DC 5.0T Electric Hydraulic Floor Jack

Check Price/Customer’s Reviews On Amazon

The jack is very powerful since it has a 12  Volt outlet and hence is capable of lifting even very heavy cars in just one minute. It is durable, stable, and secure to work with. Click on the link above for instant purchase at commensurate prices

2. Blackhawk B6350 Black/Red Fast Lift Service Jack

Click To See Price/Customer’s Reviews 

This jack has a safety valve and vent plug for safety and also has a swivel saddle for easy jack positioning. It is both durable and compact which makes for easy storage.

3. Arcan 2 Tonne Low Profile Quick Rise Floor Jack

Click To See Price/Customer’s Reviews On Amazon

This item is easy to use with a two-piece handle, durable, and also very compact such that storage in vehicle trunks is very convenient at all times. It protects injury to the vehicle since it has a rubber saddle and a foam handle bumper. It also has bypass and overload valves to prevent the possible overextension of the hydraulic ram and jack use beyond its capacity.

4. Pro-Lift B 004D Grey Hydraulic Bottle Jack 4 Tonne Capacity

Click To See Price/Customer’s Reviews

It a simple and easy kit to use and is designed to accommodate weights to excellent work heights. Its work saddle is provided to hold the load securely and has a built-in bypass system to protect against ramming while traveling.

5. Torin Big Red Steel Scissor Car Jack

This unit has a rating of about one and a half tonnes and is meant for use with compact and subcompact cars and it can lift up to 15.4 inches above the ground. It is small enough to fit under most kinds of vehicles and its crank is about sixteen inches in length with the ability to fold in half, thereby making it convenient for storage in vehicle trunks.

6. The Fasmov Scissor Jack

It has a lifting capacity of one and a  half tonnes too and so it is ideal for both compact and subcompact vehicles. Its lift height ranges from 3.5(when fully collapsed) to 13.5 inches (when fully extended). It is both portable and very durable with a crank handle and is made of a metallic body that is capable of withstanding very heavy weights when lifting.

7. Pro-Lift F 767

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This jack is relatively small and not so expensive with a two-tonne weight rating. Its size is such that it can fit underneath most vehicles. It has a convenient lifting handle and is light for easy movement. It lifts vehicles up to about fourteen inches off the ground which is adequate for most vehicles. The all-steel structure is suitable for durability.

8. Pittsburgh Automotive Floor Jack

Constructed to be suitable for both large vehicles and also low lying sports vehicles with a convenient lifting height. This jack is ideal for weights of about three tonnes and has a dual-piston rapid pump design that makes it easy to operate.

9. Best Bottle Car Jacks

They are cylindrical jacks that are equipped with a feature that can be inserted into the jack and pumped to create pressure within the bottle jack. They are similar to floor jacks but are smaller and don’t operate on wheels.

10. The Alltrade 640912

This jack is perfect for heavy vehicles and trucks with a weight rating of about three tonnes, very durable, and lifts vehicles to heights ranging between eleven to twenty-one inches. It is provided with a safety bar that is capable of locking the jack at the desired heights while maintaining stability.

Is It Safe To Jack Up One Side Of A Car – Conclusion

The issue of tending promptly to any tire blowouts, punctures, or slow leaks cannot be treated with any levity especially when we consider the fact that this unfortunate incident can occur at ungodly places and very odd times that our priority would be to get ourselves out of harm’s way. You have been furnished with basically all the need-to-knows in this article to make sure you have a successful driving experience which is our primary objective. Go ahead and have at it.

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