Sometimes we need to do work on our vehicles, and when we do, we need to be 100 percent sure that the car is safely jacked up so that we can avoid injury and get the work done. You can use a dedicated jack stand to change a tire, check for damage to your car’s undercarriage, or find out whether there’s any rust underneath your car.
A dedicated jack is invaluable, but the best jack stand will have a high tonnage capacity and will always have the ability to keep the vehicle nice and stable.
The fact of the matter is that more injuries happen every year as the result of jacking a car improperly than with any other wrenching activity, which is why you should use a good jack stand.
What Are The Benefits Of A Good Jack Stand?
Jack stands are designed to provide an absolutely vital service; they bring our vehicles up to a workable level so that we can squeeze under them and execute work and functionality appraisals.
They are designed to deliver a solid mechanical stop so that your car cannot fall; this means that you won’t have to rely on mere hydraulics when it’s time to get to work on your car.
Where they really shine is in the fact that it is nearly impossible to accidentally lower a jack stand down on top of yourself, since you must disengage a ratchet mechanism to lower the car. To do this, you’d have to be able to manually lift the automobile into the air.
On the other hand, most jack stands will allow you to easily raise the car up to a higher elevation. While you may want to use a dedicated jack to actually hoist your car off of the ground, the stand is there to allow you to work unencumbered. Here’s a good how-to video about jack stands.
With A Jack Stand, Safety Is Job Number One
There are several best practices with jack stands that everyone should pay close attention to. The first is fairly straightforward and easy to follow. If you have a wheel in the air, use a jack stand for it. This is simply the best way to maintain stability for your vehicle, and it’ll also give you extra coverage in case the hydraulics on one side of the car begins to have issues.
It’s never recommended that you use a hydraulic jack as a jack stand. These floor jacks are designed to lift, not maintain the entire weight of your car. This situation can actually be a little bit deceptive, as your car will appear to be stable, but these floor jacks can actually fail due to the nature of hydraulics.
As a matter of fact, this is a major consideration with some hydraulic jack stands as well; the hydraulics can wear down, which will cause even a jack stands platform to slowly lower.
This can be just as fatal as a fast fall, so before you use your jack stand, always let the car rest on your jack for a few minutes so that you can gauge whether its hydraulics are slowly degrading.
Capacity is one of the major considerations with these types of devices. You really don’t want a jack stand that can manage two tons of weight to be holding up a four-ton pickup.
A great practice is to purchase single jack stands that can manage the weight of your vehicle by itself. This means that if you have a two-ton sedan, you should buy at least two jack stands that have two-ton capacities each. This means that you’ll double the available capacity so that you have the safest experience possible.
Finally, as with hydraulic jacks, you need to make sure that your jack stands are always aligned with the appropriate lift points for your vehicle. If you place your stand in the wrong place, the metal can buckle and cause injury.
A great way to find out where your lift points are is to simply consult your owner’s manual; there’s typically more than enough lift point real estate to both jack your car into position and to place the jack stand underneath for stability’s sake.
Some Considerations To Make Before Purchasing
What Type Of Car Do You Own?
How Well Is The Jack Stand Built?
Is Your Work Area Level?
5 Best Jack Stands Reviews
These Arcan aluminum stands, as our first reviewed product, are excellent for those who are seeking some reliability when they jack up their car.
These are crafted of strong and shiny aluminum that will last for years. Since it ratchets, you can quickly raise your vehicle without worrying about any loss of stability, though it is recommended that you do so from alongside the car.
In addition to being so strong, the aluminum allows the product to be miraculously light as well. This means that at a little more than ten pounds, you can quickly place these jack stands where you need them to go without overexerting yourself before you even begin the work.
- The aluminum is lightweight enough to quickly tote this product around.
- This comes in a set of two, which is perfect because you should always have two stands up under your vehicle.
- The feet are wide-set for stability.
- Its base height is 11.5-inches so you should be able to get it under most vehicles.
- These are a little small.
- They are a bit expensive.
I really like these jack stands. They also have a great capacity for dealing with the majority of vehicles that are on the road today. They cost a bit more than some competing products, but it’s well worth it because they are so strong and reliable.
If you need a great overall capacity because you have a pickup truck or an SUV, the Sunex 1410 10-Ton really is the product for you.
Not only can these handle a startling ten tons, but they also have the ability to elevate your vehicle a full 46.5-inches off of the ground. With this height, you can easily get to work changing the oil, repairing, or eyeballing any trouble spots.
Additionally, this is a pin-type model that has nine different settings to select from. This means that you’ll never have to worry about failing hydraulics or rust making the stand dangerous to use.
- This has a large 3.1-inch by 5.1-inch saddle.
- This has enough capacity to be used for heavy farm equipment.
- Sunex really reinforced this stand jack. It has an “A” shaped build and a strong bar in the center for extra reinforcement.
- At a base height of 28.1-inches, you may not be able to get it under your car unless it’s significantly jacked up off the ground/floor.
- The paint has a tendency to chip.
This product is great for overall stability, but if you don’t have a larger vehicle, it’s best to stick with a smaller unit. I couldn’t imagine trying to get this stand jack under anything smaller than a truck.
Torin jack stands are widely regarded as some of the best in the industry. As the Arcan stands, these are lightweight and strong due to their aluminum construction.
One can’t help but notice that these jack stands look very simple and plain, but their performance is exceptional and reliable. As a pin-type, it’s easy to rely on these. You simply jack up the vehicle and put the pin in for the appropriate height.
Since stability is the prime stat of these stands, it’s good to know that this product has a foot width of 6 ¾ inches. This means that when you set it down, the Torin T43004 will be firmly planted and ready for a three-ton weight.
- It has a great minimum height of 10 ¾-inches.
- Its maximum height is also reasonable; you’ll be able to elevate your car to about 15 5/8-inches.
- These are very lightweight; they only weigh about ten pounds.
- The base isn’t very wide with these, so you’ll have to be careful with placement.
- The saddle is also a bit small, but as long as you are contacting the safe zones on your car, you shouldn’t have any issues.
These are great jack stands for the majority of applications. I really like pin-type devices because they simply seem more stable, so this Torin T43004 really shines for me.
This is a unique-looking jack stand that employs a soft saddle that won’t damage the undercarriage of your vehicle. In addition to this, this stand has a very tool-like appearance that employs a wide base so that the actual jack stand has a high level of stability.
To add to this stability, this is another pin-type that will add a great degree of durability and overall lastingness to the product.
The aforementioned soft-textured saddle is also round in shape. Once again, this provides a more stable experience due to the fact that the roundness leads to a greater overall surface area.
- This product can manage a full three tons of weight.
- It has a good degree of extension; it starts at 13-inches and rises to 21-inches.
- The rubber top allows you to accommodate jacking points that are irregularly shaped.
- 13-inches is a little high for a base height.
- ESCO only sells these in single units, so you’ll have to buy two.
- They are a bit expensive, especially when making the purchase twice.
Of all the products in this guide, this has the most concessions for stability, which makes it a great choice for first-timers who want to be extra safe. It’s also very sturdy, though the paint can look a bit unfinished.
The Powerbuilt 640912 is a bottle-type jack stand that uses hydraulics to provide some raising capability for the product. It has ratcheting capabilities that allow you to adjust your vehicle’s elevation minutely.
It has a skirted base that provides a good wide step for stability. The ratchet system has a toothed grip so that you can rest assured that the seating won’t slip and cause you egregious harm.
The fact that it has a safety bar for locking the product is a great feature that should provide great peace of mind. It also has a ten-inch range; you’ll be able to work between 11-inches and 21-inches at its maximum height.
- It’s well constructed for extended use.
- The bottle-type design lends a lot of inherent stability.
- The safety bar is very stable and reliable.
- The range isn’t the hugest.
- There is no attachment for the product and the handle is notched and
This is a great product that has a decent amount of height settings. Overall, the product does suffer a bit when it comes to managing its height and its base range is a little short. That being said, this is a product that’s perfect for light to moderate work.
Jack stands are an amazing way to stabilize your car or truck. Using them to safely do work is almost required due to the great weight of the vehicles that we use in our day-to-day lives.
All of the products on this list will provide you with great capacity, high levels of stability, and safe operation, but if we had to pick a specific unit, we’d select the ESCO 10498 as our favorite.
This product has a great degree of built-in strength and stability, and it even has a unique saddle that will protect and support your car evenly. In addition to this, it’s also widely set so that you can get a solid footing as you work. If there was one drawback, it would be the fact that ESCO only sells these as single units.