Floor jacks may be relatively tiny objects, but they are pretty robust too. They have a heavy-duty construction that enables them to lift and hold up any item which you need to access or work on its bottom. Nonetheless, this fantastic tool, just like any other mechanical system, is vulnerable to getting damages despite their robust nature. Thus, learning how to fix the most common problems and how to repair a floor jack that won’t hold pressure is essential.
This detailed guide will walk you through any possible issues you may come across as well as how to fix and troubleshoot your floor jack. If your floor jack is not performing, there is most probably an underlying problem behind it. Fortunately, it is something you can fix quickly as you only need a few handy tips that are in this article, so read on!
1. Check if the Jack Is Overloaded
The first thing you should note is that it is not always that floor jacks fail to work due to a fault. You ought to check your floor jack’s lifting capacity if it fails to lift a particular load or vehicle. A significant number of floor jacks are usually fitted with a safety overload feature that works to prevent them from working if its user tries to overload them.
Therefore, you should check your car’s weight against that of Jack’s lifting capacity, and you may just as easily find out the cause of your Jack’s failure. A 2-3-ton capacity jack is often able to lift the light-duty trucks or passenger vehicles. However, trying to exceed a jack’s capacity stops it from lifting and also stresses it. This results to reducing its quality, which renders this entire process dangerous for you as well.
2. Check for the right hydraulic oil levels
Inappropriate oil levels could be higher or lower than the recommended may make your floor jack to fail. The wrong oil levels might as well lower your Jack’s capability. For you to check Jack’s oil levels, you have to take off the fill plug from the Jack and peep in its chamber.
The recommended level is usually about 3/16 up to a quarter over the reservoir. Also, most of them have their manuals with hydraulic floor jack repair instructions that indicate the right level for your unit. While doing a refill, ensure that you use the best quality oil. If the floor Jack’s oil level is higher than the optimum, you need to drain some of the oil. After rectifying this fault, then your Jack can build up enough pressure to lift any weight.
From time to time, you should ensure that you examine your hydraulic floor jack to detect any dirt or even debris in the oil chamber. Dust and debris might also lead to dysfunction of the floor jack. Disassembling the Jack to assess damaged parts leading to internal or external leakages is also essential. Where necessary, you should seek professional guidance by searching for ‘floor jack repair shops near me’.
3. Expelling Trapped Air
A floor jack may also fail due to the presence of some air trapped inside. Luckily, it is easy to solve this issue through bleeding. In case you are wondering how to bleed a floor jack, you only need to place the unit’s valve in a retracted position which is, anticlockwise of its handle. Finally, ensure that you replace Jack’s oil fill screw and then try using it again.
Yet another reason that may lead to your floor jack’s failure is the lack of enough oil in its reservoir. If this happens, some air starts to build up inside the unit, which prevents the jack from lifting. An extra handy tip is that you should try not to use different oil types such as motor oil or brake oil as it could damage the interior parts of your floor jack.
Different types of oils have their specific viscosity that suits your unit best for advanced performance. Also, these products have certain chemicals and different acidity levels that could swell, tear up, or even degrade the quality of the floor jack’s components.
4. Conduct a Final Overall Checkup
If you have already solved all of the issues named above, it does not necessarily mean that the floor jack is ready to work normally. A hydraulic floor jack troubleshooting is vital to detect any other problems it may have. You should crosscheck items such as cracked welds, ruined parts, oil leaks, and more.
Moreover, you ought to inspect the floor jack’s ram by turning it on either side. Ensure you examine it while in both the retracted and extended positions. If Jack has rusty pistons, this can lead to an underlying problem that ought to be taken care of.
5. Maintenance and Servicing
Regular maintenance of the floor jack also goes a long way to ensure it always works efficiently. For instance, you should apply premium lubricating oil on all movable parts. This is one of the most vital yet most ignored routines that ought to take place with a floor jack. Lubrication, especially on the hinges and wheels, helps ensure that your Jack runs smoothly and effectively with minimal friction.
6. Check the Jack’s Release Valve
If the handle of the Jack is pumping correctly and the saddle is correctly positioned but still find the hydraulic Jack not going up, check the release valve’s tightness. You should then adjust it appropriately. If this were the cause of the floor jack not holding pressure, it should start working perfectly after it is corrected. You do not have to wait until your jack fails. If you take good care of it, it will definitely serve you well.
How to Fix a Jack That Won’t Stay Up YouTube Video
With that said and done, I hope you are now well-equipped with tips on how to repair a floor jack that won’t hold pressure. Finding out the real issue may prove quite tricky, but fortunately, you have this guide. More often than not, the above-written problems are usually the underlying cause of failure for your floor jack to hold pressure, and they are easy to solve. However, for more complicated problems, it is advisable to seek expert advice or consult the manufacturer to address this issue effectively. Always remember that the most common issues that cause jack failure are overloading the Jack, an oil underfill or overfill, trapped air and oil leak rusty ram pistons, among others.