helps us understand the difference between the two stands, but is one better than the other?
What are the two types of jack stands?
The stamped metal-pinned tubular jack stand looks slightly primitive now, but it can still do a good job. The bottom tube splays outward into three legs with metal bands on the bottoms of the feet to steady them. This jack can be locked with a metal pin and comes with a height-adjustable cradle to hold up the car.
These jacks were popular because they were so cheap, but there are some glaring
In contrast, the newer ratcheting jack stands are made with a stronger metal plate. It also saves time on the repair because it can deploy itself faster. A toothed post replaces the twin stamped-metal tubes, and the ratchet works like a circular wrench. These jack stands have pawls, curved bars that can slide or pivot on one side.
Confidence in ratcheting jack stands wavered after a Harbor Freight recall in May 2020. 1.7 million three-ton and six-ton stands reportedly had a possible defect that caused them to slip under heavy loads. Harbor Freight said the defect was caused by outdated tooling from one of the stand's manufacturing companies.
Several people noticed that the pawl on the recalled jack stands doesn't fit properly under the teeth, causing it to waver. Even after the issue was supposedly fixed, more jack stands had to be recalled for cracked seam weldings.
This caused an increased demand for the old tubular jack stands, since many of them now have screw-on bases. That meant that it couldn't have any cracked seam weldings, giving former Harbor Freight buyers some peace of mind.
, most of these jack stands are now equipped with a double-locking feature. It holds the jack stand in place as you work with a new lockable safety pin.
While a tubular jack stand isn't necessarily dangerous, it's still not as safe as a double-locking ratcheting stand. You can never be too careful when you're working under an object that weighs several tons. However, it's even more important to follow the right safety practices when using jack stands.
Use multiple jacks, don't overload them, and always place them on level ground while working. Jack stands are great tools for fixing cars, but only if used safely. If you don't feel comfortable working with jacks,