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superhawk996

Warning about the Harbor Freight 1.5 ton racing jack

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I've read a shitload of owner's manuals, don't recall a single one that didn't spell out jack points.  I remember as a kid, the first car that had them since it didn't have a frame--our CVCC.

 

On the other hand, I think I am the only person ever to read an owner's manual.  I can't believe "everyone" seems to refuse to read for two hours on how to best use their second largest investment/cost in life.  I just had another conversation about a car feature someone didn't know they had, who seemed like a rational and thinking person otherwise.

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I'm not sure what that's in response to, but most all my past vehicles had jack points for the supplied jack, but for a floor jack...nothing specific to a floor jack, and these newer cars, the normal jack points don't play nice with floor jacks unless you have an adapter to fit the body weld points (which I've had to buy).

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My guess is if you have to look into manual to find jack points you should probably not work on you car on your own. 

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11 hours ago, Zero Knievel said:

I'm not sure what that's in response to, but most all my past vehicles had jack points for the supplied jack, but for a floor jack...nothing specific to a floor jack, and these newer cars, the normal jack points don't play nice with floor jacks unless you have an adapter to fit the body weld points (which I've had to buy).

While those body lifting points are not designed for a floor jack, they're almost always safe for a floor jack even without the adapter.  When you take your car to a shop with a lift they generally use those same points with a flat pad, no special adapters.  An issue arrises if your jack has a deep enough cup that the jack will lift on the non-lifting parts of sheet metal instead of on the designated lift point's folded/welded edge.  Both of my 'go-to' jacks have nearly flat pads with just small raised edges so it's not a problem.  Another potential issue is if the jack can't easily roll as it lifts, this will pull on that lift point and could bend it.

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7 hours ago, tomek said:

My guess is if you have to look into manual to find jack points you should probably not work on you car on your own. 

I concur.  There are those people who can work from a manual and pull shit off perfectly.  I think the biggest problem is that as soon as something isn't as shown in the manual they'll be fucked.  I have had to re-do/un-do a lot of people's DIY stuff, even people that that seem to know what they're doing.  It's usually simple for me, but impossible for someone that just follows the book.  On the flip side, people that ignore the book will most likely fuck up too.  As in just about any field, there are those things that can be taught or shown in a book and the rest that has to come from within.

 

Mike working on his shit I'm tossed on.  He definitely doesn't have the gift for it, but he's still alive.

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4 hours ago, superhawk996 said:

Mike working on his shit I'm tossed on.  He definitely doesn't have the gift for it, but he's still alive.


Well, the manual tells you where proper jack points are located.  I had to buy adapters for the floor jack and jack stands because the Prius has thinner body panels than most vehicles.  I had a couple of nice bent metal sections I still haven’t 100% unfucked because I used the jack stands without adapters.  The Prius is the first vehicle I’ve seen that have points at the front and rear that serve no purpose other than as lift points for a floor jack...perhaps because of the lighter materials used to build the car.

 

All I know is that I would not assume something is a safe lift point for a floor jack or a jack stand as I once did with my ‘98 pickup.  The way vehicles are made today, it’s worth a bit of reading and research to know where are the safe points on the undercarriage before putting a couple thousand pounds of force on a few square inches of material.

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I have 4 Harbor Freight floor jacks.

 

Two 1.5 ton low profile aluminum jacks, the 20 year old orange kinda low profile jack that Carlos probably has (2.5-3 ton?), and the new 2.5 I bought after I blew out trying to pick up a third of a 3.5 ton trailer with one of the 1.5 ton aluminum jacks.  To be fair, that particular jack had been greatly abused and has raised the front half of a 5600 pound truck (that's 1.5 tons, right) more times than it should have.

 

If I ever need another jack, I'll check HF first.

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6 hours ago, Zero Knievel said:

I had to buy adapters for the floor jack and jack stands because the Prius has thinner body panels than most vehicles

I have a Prius, don't have adapters, and don't have damaged sheet metal.

 

6 hours ago, Zero Knievel said:

All I know is that I would not assume something is a safe lift point for a floor jack or a jack stand as I once did with my ‘98 pickup.  The way vehicles are made today, it’s worth a bit of reading and research to know where are the safe points on the undercarriage before putting a couple thousand pounds of force on a few square inches of material.

An example of that whole knowledge/natural skill thing about working on stuff.  I can just look at a car and know where/how to lift it vs. having to research it.  Like Tomek said, when you need a manual just to raise a vehicle it's questionable if you should be fucking with it at all.  But since you are going to fuck with it it's good that you research it rather than crush the car and/or yourself in the process.  I use ramps more often than a jack, something to consider getting if you don't have a set.

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You probably shouldn't even be checking your own oil if you have to look in the manual to find the 710 cap.  The reverse, however, is that if people bothered to read the manuals, they'd start to understand how this works on all cars, and be able to figure out little things like jack points and where not to pour the coolant in the future.

 

I've walked away from helping someone with a flat tire who had no clue where the tools were, the spare, or the manual itself.  Two year old car, she'd never looked at it.  Whatever, if you can't be bothered, neither can I.  You probably have towing coverage, right?  Didn't know.  I glanced at the windshield, there's a big "how to get a tow sticker."  I had to go.

 

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Funny timing.  I just replied to a post on the truck forum from a guy trying to get suggestions on how to get his 80lb. floor jack in & out of his Excursion because he discovered that the factory jack is completely useless for a roadside tire change.  The factory jack looks like a bottle jack but it's got a screw type lifting system, you rotate a thing on the front to make it lift.  Under the hood is a long two piece rod that you click together then lock into the jack's spinny thing letting you slide it into position under the truck then crank it up.  He was laying under the truck on his belly on hot pavemet turning the spinny thing with the pointy end of the lug wrench that's for popping off the hub caps.

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Actually, I don't know for sure that's what he was doing, but he definitely wasn't using the rods so pretty sure he was using the lug wrench's tip.

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On 12/16/2019 at 1:54 PM, blackhawkxx said:

The poor man's jackstand is to throw the tire/wheel under the car until you are done.

“I believe that the wheel suggestion was an improvisational thing for those without jack stands or just not wanting to go get them, you take the removed wheel and put it under the car as a safety back-up, not to actually rest the car on.  Employing a wheel & wood block for regular use seems quite odd, now I know where you got it”

 

I’ve done the improvised thing when doing changes/repairs with no jack stands present.

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2 hours ago, TOXXIC said:

“I believe that the wheel suggestion was an improvisational thing for those without jack stands or just not wanting to go get them, you take the removed wheel and put it under the car as a safety back-up, not to actually rest the car on.  Employing a wheel & wood block for regular use seems quite odd, now I know where you got it”

 

I’ve done the improvised thing when doing changes/repairs with no jack stands present.

 

Well, there’s this also...... the wheel is off the car anyway, right? You don’t want it rolling off or anything, and if you are not using it already as a seat, it has to go somewhere. Why not under the vehicle, out of the way?

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4 hours ago, RXX said:

 

Well, there’s this also...... the wheel is off the car anyway, right? You don’t want it rolling off or anything, and if you are not using it already as a seat, it has to go somewhere. Why not under the vehicle, out of the way?

Because you suppose to do it according to manual. 😎 

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BMW:  Can't fit a wheel under it.

 

Jeep:  Wouldn't do anything at all under that.

 

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On 12/19/2019 at 11:04 AM, superhawk996 said:

Funny timing.  I just replied to a post on the truck forum from a guy trying to get suggestions on how to get his 80lb. floor jack in & out of his Excursion because he discovered that the factory jack is completely useless for a roadside tire change.  The factory jack looks like a bottle jack but it's got a screw type lifting system, you rotate a thing on the front to make it lift.  Under the hood is a long two piece rod that you click together then lock into the jack's spinny thing letting you slide it into position under the truck then crank it up.  He was laying under the truck on his belly on hot pavemet turning the spinny thing with the pointy end of the lug wrench that's for popping off the hub caps.

LOL.  That how it was on my 87 Ford Ranger.  You would think when he checked the oil (If he ever did), he would wonder what those "rods" were for.  Guess not.

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They're super obvious, but more than one person has completely missed them being there.  In this case he had to see them because the lug wrench is clamped with the rods.  I think the older Fords had just the rods there, but it's been a while since I had one.

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My 99 Ranger had everything (bottle type jack, rods, lug wrench) under the passenger seat.  Without reading the manual I'm sure that many wouldn't even know it was there.

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On 12/28/2019 at 9:35 AM, superhawk996 said:

They're super obvious, but more than one person has completely missed them being there.  In this case he had to see them because the lug wrench is clamped with the rods.  I think the older Fords had just the rods there, but it's been a while since I had one.

My jack and lug wrench were behind one of the jump seats.  It was an extended cab.

FYI, with a completely flat front tire, you couldn't get the jack under the factory specified jacking point.  Found this out in the rain, of course.  At least I had a 2x8 for cribbing.

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Just throw the spare tire under there, solves everything.

 

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That's sketchy looking.  Since the floor jack probably can't roll under load it'll try to pull the car as it raises and the pad could slip out from under it.  If it's lifting on a fold/pinch weld like most cars use for the stock jack it's likely to bend and flatten it.  There's double back-up against falling, but those back-ups look a bit sketchy too.  It's a brake job so unlikely to pose a threat of serious injury/death if it falls, but there's potential to do damage to the car.

 

Putting the jack on a thick hard board long enough so it can roll as it lifts would help with that part, or use the factory jack.  Move the jack stand to something non-suspended and set the car on it so that it's loaded rather than the car having to fall onto it.  With most cars you're safe putting a stand where the lower control arm attaches to the car, or a crossmember, I don't know that car's undersides.  With the stand where it is, and it appears to not be in contact with the car, the dropping motion and suspension movement combine to increase the chance of the stand slipping out or trying to fall over if the jack failed.

Edited by superhawk996

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23 hours ago, SwampNut said:

Just throw the spare tire under there, solves everything.

 

Not as redneck then as I am now, so didn't think about it.  It was 1989, I think.  Probably would have fucked up the wheel, and made it impossible to drive.

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