How to Use a Floor Jack Properly – Step by Step Beginner’s Guide

How to Use a Floor JackAs we all know that cars are naturally heavy, so if you don’t use appropriate tools and precautionary measures, the chances of serious damages and injuries are more likely expected.

Hence, people should learn how to properly use this tool to prevent unnecessary injuries or costs. On the other hand, some people are motivated by the thought of just owning a floor jack.

Well, This short piece of information will help you understand a step-by-step guide on how to use a floor jack.

The best thing about mechanical floor jacks is that you can manually operate them.

It just simply utilizes the principles of a screw thread to amplify force and provides a mechanical advantage.

A jack stands with a base that could be used to provide support to it. Go through the article to learn the steps required to use a floor jack.

Floor jacks categories

In general, there are two categories for floor jacks. The one is mechanical jacks and the other one is hydraulic jacks. Both types of jack vary in terms of distance of the thread pitch and weight capacity.

  • Mechencail floor jacks

Well, a mechanical floor jack comes with a screwing mechanism. The screwing mechanism of the floor jack uses the mechanical force applied to the tool’s jack body in order to lift the vehicle properly.

Furthermore, mechanical jacks are very easy to use as their screwing mechanism is adjustable. They make it easier for users to lift objects with minimal to medium effort.

It is important to know that mechanical jacks are often used for house jacks and carjacks because of their capacity to lift. Plus, they are also handy and easy to store.

  • Hydraulic Floor Jacks

This category of floor jacks is considered more complicated compared to mechanical floor jacks.

Hydraulic floor jacks are composed of different kinds of valves, levers, and hydraulic pistons in order to lift much heavier loads. They use hydraulics in order to uplift massive loads. They are often used for heavy-duty lifting.

How does a floor jack work?

Floor jacks use hydraulics in order for the equipment to lift objects at a certain height. Then the hydraulics use the liquid power that is taken from the applied force in order to move certain things using the same force. In a floor jack term, the liquid pressure is immediately added when the user pushes the handle downwards while the jack lifts the vehicle upwards.

When a user lifts the jack’s handle, the pump piston automatically moves upwards. In this case, you are drawing the fluid power out of the bottle jack. Then, the fluid power will fill the pump cylinder with liquid pressure. When a user moves the jack’s handle downward, force is being applied to it. This applied pressure further results in becoming the pressurized liquid.

Now, the pressurized fluid that is contained in the check valve will then transfer to another channel. Then, the pressurized fluid force will slowly fill the main cylinder.  This movement will further push the lifting piston to move upwards. If you keep pumping the handles a few times, you can lift a car to a certain height.

How to properly use a floor jack?

An unexpected or sudden descent could damage the vehicle, and, more importantly, could possibly cause serious injuries to anyone working on, under, or near the car. 

Hence it is strongly recommended to be aware of the fact that it is very important to do such things in a proper manner. Follow the steps mentioned below in order to use a floor jack properly.

  1. Firstly, Park your vehicle on a level surface, and engage the parking brake. A garage is among the ideal location.
  2. Now, Chock your wheels at the opposite end from where you’ll be lifting the car. The purpose is to prevent accidental rollback. don’t hesitate to do this even if the surface is level.
  3. Prepare jack stands to position before jacking up your vehicle. If you have plans on working under your car or intend to leave your car lifted for an extended period, jack stands are of great importance.
  4. Don’t forget to check your jack for any flaws, cracks, or leaks. Try to look for leaking fluids or a loose or broken saddle. (The saddle is considered a part of the jack that makes contact with the vehicle.)
  5. Now, Test it to make sure it raises and lowers smoothly. If you are not aware of where they exactly are, just locate the lift points under your vehicle. No need to worry much about it as this information will be in your owner’s manual.
  6. Don’t forget to make sure the area around your vehicle is clear of debris and you have plenty of space to work in. 
  7. Assemble the handle (if needed) and then insert it into the receptacle a the back of the jack. 
  8. Use the handle to position the floor jack under your vehicle. 
  9. Keep pumping the handle up and down until the saddle is close to touching the vehicle and then adjust accordingly until the saddle is positioned fully under the lift point.
  10. Now just lift the vehicle to the necessary height for the job and then position your jack stands.
  11. Now just slowly lower the vehicle by turning the handle gently counterclockwise.
  12. Once the weight is fully on the stands, you just need to lower the jack the rest of the way.
  13. When done working on the vehicle, repeat steps 8 and 9.
  14. Make sure that there is no one under or near the vehicle, and just clear the area of tools.
  15. Keep pumping the handle until the floor jack is carrying the weight of the vehicle, and the vehicle is clear of the jack stands.


The basic key to using a floor jack is to exercise caution. It helps to make lifting a vehicle seem almost effortless, but it’s important to remember there is a lot of weight on that jack. Stay focused on your surroundings, maintaining your jack, and use common sense to prevent any mishaps from occurring.

Janathan Greez
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