Update: More evident trouble through Harbor Freight jack stands, according to the owner the a replacement set for his recalled units, as reported by The Drive. according to the owner, one jack stand failed significantly at the welded seam under the load of a Volkswagen Golf (as watched in the on facebook photos below). Harbor Freight told The Drive the the agency is investigate the issue. Now, additionally per The Drive, harbor Freight is recalling some three-ton jack stand that some customers purchased together replacements for the previously recalled items. Apparently, the systems that loss under the brand-new recall also suffer from insufficient welds that deserve to fail. Please be safe while working under your car. Customers deserve to verify which jack stands autumn under the broadened recall here. The original write-up continues below.

The terrifying harbor Freight recall the jack was standing that can fail as result of a manufacturing defect is in the news right now, and it is as good a time as any to evaluation the procedures and also equipment we"re all using to lift ours cars. However first, let"s take a look at the concerns facing those certain Harbor Freight jack stands for this reason you have an idea that why this is all so troubling.

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Harbor Freight"s recall covers part 3-ton and 6-ton "Pittsburgh" brand jack stands with item numbers 56371, 61196, and also 61197. (View the PDF the the recall document here for much more details.) These room pawl-type jack stands, with a pawl that engages with teeth top top the lifting arm of the jack stand. A architecture flaw resulted in by old tooling in the manufacturing facility that constructed them could cause the pawl to disengage, letting the jack (and the auto on peak of it) suddenly and unexpectedly drop.

This is dramatically depicted by a couple of photos indigenous a Reddit user, who mutual it v us anonymously and also we"re reprinting right here with permission. They used some paint to the pawl that a unit in question and let it deliver onto the this of the jack stand, which offers a sense of precisely how tiny the pawl is meshing v the teeth. See the mark on the pawl below:

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There"s only a sliver of paint transferred ~ above the tooth, a graphics illustration of how small holding power this particular set of recalled jack stands deserve to muster. You can see the mark, below:

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Without knowing around the recall, this type of defect would be incredibly hard (if no impossible) because that a user to notice—until the automobile came crashing down, with possibly tragic consequences. Because that reference, the same user take it a photo of an larger Harbor Freight jack was standing that"s not involved in the recall, using the exact same technique. The larger paint mark means the pawl got hold of a lot an ext of the tooth. Watch below:

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If you have actually jack stands native Harbor Freight, you re welcome take a minute prior to reading ~ above to view if they"re impacted by the recall. It can save your life.

Working underneath a lifted automobile is inherently extremely dangerous, and also it"s straightforward to be cavalier or location too lot trust in equipment that might not worthy it. Our guide below is intended not as a how-to, due to the fact that every car and also truck is different, yet rather as an outline of some best practices the will gain you reasoning critically around your methods.

As always, very closely read the manual—for your vehicle, for her floor jack, and also for her jack stands—before starting. And if you have any type of concerns about your situation, or equipment, don"t acquire under the vehicle.

Before starting, make sure you"ve got the right devices for the job. You"ll require a jack and at least two jack stand to work under her vehicle. First, for sure they"re rated for your vehicle"s weight. Relying on when it was manufactured and the particular model, jack stands can be weight rated personal or together a pair.  Check your certain jack stands" hand-operated or brand to check the load rating to make certain that you"ve actually gained the right tools to support your vehicle.

Also remember the jack stands room intended come be supplied in pairs, i beg your pardon partially defines the shared weight rating. It"s not recommended come use just one jack was standing to assistance a portion of the vehicle, no one to use 2 sets to support both ends of the vehicle at the exact same time (although raising both ends and also supporting them through jack stands is common, in practice). Describe the owner"s hands-on if you"re unsure.

What weight rating have to you choose? recognize your vehicle"s curb weight (it"s typically in the owner"s manual) and also pick jack stands v a similar rating. Round up fairly than down. If your vehicle weighs 5,500 pounds, choose 3-ton jack was standing (or more) quite than 2-ton. Likewise, make certain your lifting device is up to the job. Lastly, check the lifting dimensions—will the jack lift enough to gain the jack stand underneath? are the jack stand long enough to adequately background the vehicle?

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If you should lift both end of the vehicle, over there are various other devices, such as the QuickJack hydraulic scissor jack (shown above), that room a safer (albeit an ext expensive) solution. Quality car ramps are likewise a safe, sturdy, and also less expensive different for increasing two or four wheels off the floor for particular repairs, and also they"re fast and convenient when offered properly. In many circumstances, these can be safer and quicker alternatives to the floor jack and jack stand method, provided you"re not working on tasks that need the wheel to come off.

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Regardless of what you"ll it is in lifting or sustaining the car with, examine the problem of every one of them. Make sure the jack is stable and in an excellent working order. Study your jack stands—whether the pawl, pin, or screw type. If any kind of of this tools is bent, damaged, or shows up questionable, don"t usage it. Shot to usage high-quality equipment from a trusted manufacturer.

We don"t recommend using the jack the came with your vehicle, normally a scissor or party jack, for continual maintenance. They"re emergency items because that occasional use, like an altering a tire on the next of the road.

Whenever possible, a flat, hard, level surface-like a concrete garage floor—is by much the ideal surface come lift a automobile from. This isn"t constantly possible, specifically for a tires change. Perform what you deserve to to level the vehicle, and also ensure the jack stands remainder on a hard surface. A soft surface could reason the jack stands to shift, possibly dropping the vehicle.

There are products called jack stabilizer pads that can be used to support a jack or jack stand. A sturdy piece of timber can likewise be offered in a pinch. Yet the ideal option is a hard, level surface.

Chocks are simple wedge-like gadgets that protect against the auto from rolling. Place two behind the wheel of the finish you are not lifting up. In a pinch, a sturdy block of lumber or a brick have the right to be used, provided you for sure it"s sufficient to stop the car from rolling. Make sure to set the parking brake, and put the vehicle in "park" or in equipment to help ensure it won"t role as friend lift up one end. But also remember the the parking brake generally only works on the rear axle. Make making use of chocks a habit no issue which finish you"re lifting.

Where girlfriend lift from, and also where you ar your jack stands under the vehicle, is going come vary depending upon the automobile in question. Top the owner"s hand-operated to determine exactly how to lift. Countless vehicles have sturdy lift points intended because that this purpose—but make certain the shape and also style the the lifting point is a good match for your jack and also jack stands. Some vehicles have the right to be lifted through the axle or differential, yet this could additionally damage other vehicles. Don"t make assumptions; top the manual. If the jack points are damaged or you can"t find one, don"t lift the vehicle and consult your dealer or trusted mechanic.

Ensure the wherever girlfriend jack from, there"s adequate clearance to the jack was standing support point to gain the jack was standing in and squared increase underneath that point.

Start v the jack stand on a lower setting. Girlfriend can always raise them more later. Make sure they"re set to the same height on both sides. Just raise the vehicle as lot as you should do the project safely—more height way more potential instability.

Once the car is chocked, the jack is located safely, and the auto is lifted, it"s time to location the jack stands in ~ the shown points. Ensure the jack stands are vertical and also not relaxing on any type of debris. Make sure no one is under the vehicle, and also it won"t call anything coming down. Ar the jack stand and readjust the elevation as close come the support point as possible. Gradually release the jack to resolve the auto onto the jack stands.

As the vehicle settles, make sure the jack stands continue to be vertical and make great contact through the jack points. Watch carefully, due to the fact that the automobile may come under at a slim angle, and you may have to move the jack stands slightly before the vehicle rests on them so they room lined increase properly. When down, and also before acquiring underneath, twin check the vehicle"s stability. That shouldn"t rock and the jack stand shouldn"t shift. If it doesn"t feel solid and secure, double-check her setup and also perhaps jack the car ago up to reset everything.

Before acquiring underneath, think around what could happen if a jack stand (or the jacking point) falls short or shifts, dropping the vehicle. How are you going to protect yourself, and also how space you walk to obtain out from under the vehicle? It"s not a bad idea to place a 3rd jack stand, the floor jack, or also a tire underneath in a convenient spot to help protect friend if the worst happens. Make certain this back-up machine doesn"t inhibit your ability to out from under the vehicle quickly.

It"s additionally not a bad idea come let someone recognize you"ll it is in under the car, or have a phone call handy. We"ve heard of disastrous instances where a person, pinned through a vehicle, would have actually survived if aid came in time.

It doesn"t take lengthy to for sure you"ve acquired an escape path, or much added equipment come give develop a back-up support, so there"s no factor why you can"t incorporate these potential live-savers right into your regular auto lifting routine.

Getting negative vibes? acquire out, or much better yet, don"t obtain under in the first place. Your life isn"t worth acquisition a shortcut or making use of questionable equipment. Stop and also make certain you"ve obtained the ideal tools because that the job, and you know how to usage them properly—or take the task to a professional.

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Working ~ above your automobile or truck you yourself is rewarding, fun, and also can likewise save you a lot of money, so use safe lifting techniques, common sense—and have fun.

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