When working on your car, your safety should always be top of mind. We’ve compiled this list of the best jack stands for cars to ensure you’re safe while working under your car.
A reliable set of jack stands is a necessity for any home mechanic. While doing any kind of maintenance that involves going underneath your car, you should always take the necessary precautions. Putting your car up on jack stands is imperative for your safety. You should never rely on a floor jack alone when working under your car. Accidents resulting from floor jack failure can lead to serious injury or even death.
With the recent news of the recall of two models of Harbor Freight Jack Stands, we want to make sure you have all the facts and information to get the safest possible jack stand for your car. Whether you’re doing a quick tire change or a multi-day project, make sure to invest in a trustworthy set of jack stands.
What to Look for When Purchasing Jack Stands For Your Car
A reliable jack stand is a vital piece of safety equipment that all car buffs should have. Above all, safety is the ultimate necessity. Additionally, it is important to get the jack stand that fits your specific car’s needs.
Factors to consider include weight capacity, height adjustability, build quality, jack stand size, and compatibility with specific cars. Along with that, consider how many jack stands you want to keep on hand in your garage. Be aware that while many jack stands for cars come in pairs, some are sold individually.
Best Overall Choice
1. 6-Ton Torin BIG RED T41202 Steel Jack Stands (also available in 2, 3, & 12-ton capacities)
This jack stand takes no shortcuts on both quality and durability. Torin uses high-grade forged steel to create a jack stand that can handle a range of vehicles including small cars, SUVs, and light-duty trucks. This Big Red Jack Stand not only comes with a 6-ton rating, but also comes in three other weight ratings: 2-ton, 3-ton, and 12-ton. Most importantly, this jack stand is tested for safety and reliability to meet the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) standards.
The multi-position ratchet bar allows for adjustable heights, suitable for a range of repairs and maintenance jobs. The jack has a wide, stable base and a locking mechanism to ensure the jack will not retract or sink on surfaces. With that said, make sure that you always use your jack stand on flat, solid ground.
Though not inexpensive, this jack stand comes with a 1-year warranty from an extremely respected and reputable automotive manufacturer, making it well worth the added cost.
The Pro-LifT Double Pick Jack Stand is a 6-ton jack stand with a top-quality cast ductile iron ratchet bar and a steel base. This high-quality set of two jack stands comes with a double locking safety feature that gives you extra peace of mind while working underneath your car.
This jack stand has a high load capability and a double-locking mechanism consisting of a locking handle and mobility pin. The adjustable height ratchet bar has an easy-to-use adjustment mechanism that allows you to quickly and securely lock the jack stand into the needed position. This jack stand is great for both commercial and residential use.
3. 3-Ton Torin BIG RED T43002A Steel Double Locking Jack Stands (also available in 2 & 6-ton capacities)
This jack stand set from Torin has a double locking feature that provides added support and safety. In addition to the main lock, the stand’s locking support pin is specifically designed to increases the safety of this jack stand. If you are working in a busy environment or want a jack stand with added safety features, a removable support locking pin adds an additional layer of safety.
This jack stand is made from heavy-duty steel, has a wide foot base, and has a multi-position forged iron ratchet bar that allows for quick height adjustments. Though on the surface, this jack stand may look indistinguishable from the Torin Big Red T41202 jack stands, the double lock feature is the added bonus you get when purchasing this Torin model. Additionally, if you are looking for a 12-ton capacity, this stand does not come in that size. Along with the 3-ton capacity, you can also choose to purchase it in s 2-ton and 6-ton versions.
4. 3-Ton Torin BIG RED T43004 Aluminum Jack Stands w/ Locking Support Pins
If you are looking for a lightweight jack stand option, look no further than Torin’s Big Red high-grade aluminum jack stands for cars. This set of two jack stands is only available with a 3-ton weight capacity. Like all of Torin’s Big Red products, it meets ASME safety standards and includes a 1-year manufacturer warranty. It is well-suited for a wide range of vehicles, from small cars to ATV’s.
As for safety features and unique to this jack stand, it comes with removable locking support pins with six locking positions for added safety. In addition, it has a wide foot base for added stability. The base is also removable, allowing for compact storage. To sum it up, the high-grade aluminum makes this jack stand a lightweight but durable option ideal for those looking for space or weight savings.
5. 3-Ton Powerbuilt Alltrade 640912 All-in-One Truck Lift Jack
Unlike other jack stands on the market, this unique 3-ton bottle jack from Powerbuilt combines both a bottle jack and a jack stand into a single unit. The unit can be used with both regular and unibody cars and trucks, and it’s 3-ton weight rating and 11-21 inch height range make it ideal for use with light trucks and off-road vehicles.
First and foremost, all Powerbuilt products meet both ASME and Portable Automotive Lifting Devices (PALD) standards. In addition, the design provides both concave and flat lifting surfaces that are able to accommodate numerous factory-approved lifting points. This unit is compact, versatile, and safe.
It is important to note that this is only sold as a singular unit instead of as a pair or set, making the Powerbuilt All-in-One Bottle Jack one of the more expensive jack stands on the market. But, with the built-in bottle jack functionality, you may be able to save on the cost of a separate floor jack.
For home mechanics who want a simple, durable, and affordable option, Cartman’s 3-ton jack stand will fit the bill. This heavy-duty steel jack stand is sold as a pair and meets all American National Standards Institute (ANSI) requirements.
For added safety and protection, this jack stand has a double-locking feature. On top of that, it has a quick adjustment mechanism and a multi-position ductile ratchet bar that makes for an extremely durable jack stand at an excellent value.
Best Premium Choice
7. 10-Ton Sunex 1410 High Height Pin Type Jack Stands
This beefy pair of jack stands from Sunex Tools has a 10-ton capacity and an adjustable height range from 28.1 to 46.5 inches. It also comes with a higher price tag. Composed of a four-leg steel base and heavy schedule pipe, these jack stands have superior strength and stability. The V-shaped saddle is specifically engineered to cradle axles and other vehicle components.
In addition to being compatible with all kinds of cars, this versatile jack stand can also support trailers, fleet equipment, and farm equipment. All Sunex lifting equipment has a 1-year warranty and undergoes ASME and PALD compliance testing.
Compared to other jack stands for cars, these are very large and will take up some space in your garage. If you are looking for a versatile jack stand with the maximum height adjustability for all your projects, and don’t mind storing a larger stand, this is the jack stand for you.
This par of 3-ton jack stands from AmazonBasics has all the necessary features for a functional and safe jack stand. It meets ASME safety standards, has an adjustable height range, a strong steel frame, and a rustproof coating. The stand’s self-locking ratchet provides ease of use. On top of that, it is backed by AmazonBasics 1-year warranty.
This compact and durability jack stand makes it an ideal purchase for either garage repair or for roadside assistance, such as changing a flat tire. Overall, this jack stand is best for smaller cars.
Unique to this jack stand, the Esco 10498 has a flat top with a removable rubber saddle cushion designed to protect your car’s frame. The rubber saddle should reduce the risk of scratching the frame. Other features include height adjustment from 13 to 21 inches and a circular base pad that provides added stability. Also, the jack stand has a wide, tripod-style base that gives the stand maximum durability.
Unlike most of the other jack stands which come in pairs, this jack stand is sold individually. Keep this in mind when making your purchase, as you will need to purchase more than one, and it is priced higher than similar 3-ton jack stands.
If you might also need a floor jack along with your jack stands, consider this combo kit from Pro-Lift. The floor jack and the two jack stands are all made of heavy-duty steel. It comes with a convenient, easy-to-carry storage case that fits all three items.
The jack stands themselves have a 2-ton capacity making them suitable for smaller cars. The jack stands have cast ductile iron bars and a height adjustment mechanism. The floor jack has two front wheels and two rear swivel casters. In total, the entire kit weighs 36 pounds, making for an easily transportable kit that is also high-quality, safe, and durable.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I know how many jack stands I need?
The general rule of thumb is to use one jack stand for every wheel that is not touching the ground. This is necessary for your car to maintain stability.
With that being said, it definitely depends on the type of project you are undertaking. If you are simply changing a tire, using one jack stand should be sufficient. For more lengthy or tedious projects, using more than one jack stand is highly recommended for safety.
What should I look for in a jack stand?
While a jack stand does not lift the car itself, jack stands are essential in providing fixed, safe support once the car is lifted. More than anything, make sure to get a jack stand that has an appropriate weight capacity for your vehicle. Look for a jack stand that can hold about double the weight of your car. For instance, if your car weighs around 3 tons, get a jack stand with 6-ton capabilities.
The durability and manufacturing quality of the jack stand are also vital. When making your purchase, pay attention to the materials used, the finish, the welds, and the structure. To verify the safety, check to see if the jack stand meets the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) standards.
What are jack stand lift points?
Lift points are the specific points on your car where it is safe to place a jack stand. To find the points specific to your vehicle, refer to your car’s owner’s manual. If you cannot find the manual, you usually can find this information through a Google search. If you do not use the correct lift points, you may cause significant damage to your car, or worse, the car could fall.
Can I trust jack stands?
The purpose of jack stands, in general, is safety while you are underneath a car. You should never go underneath your car if it is only being supported by a floor jack.
It goes without saying that accidents have happened while using jack stands. And working underneath a car is one of the most vulnerable positions you can be in. Make sure to adhere to the necessary safety rules and precautions and stay within the load limit of the jack stand. Give your car a shake before going underneath to make sure the jack stands are completely stable.
Also, if you have a tire off your car, go ahead and put the tire under the frame of your car as a back-up safety precaution. You can also keep the floor jack in place in addition to using jack stands as another safety back-up while underneath your car.
Before going underneath the vehicle, check that everything is secure. Then, check again. You will never regret taking every necessary precaution.
Joybeth Sullivan is an accomplished content creator. She does it all as a writer, photographer, and videographer. Her work has been published in local and international outlets. She graduated from the University of Georgia in May of 2020 with a dual-degree in English & Film. Today, she is based out of Denver, CO. When she isn't writing, you can find her on long drives in the mountains with her husky, Newman, riding shotgun.