Automotive

trolley jack sometimes lowering under weight.

  • Last Updated:
  • May 3rd, 2019 4:00 pm
[OP]
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Jul 15, 2003
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Ontario, Canada

trolley jack sometimes lowering under weight.

I've have a 3T trolley jack since 2011. i just use it to change tires on my and family (3-5 cars) every spring and fall.

This season i noticed after jacking up the car it will sometimes click/ping and very slowly let the car lower. Like an inch a minute. Twisting the handle tighter doesn't help. it's never done this before.

I assume some seals are wearing out. Is this something that can be fixed or am i looking at getting a new one?
34 replies
Deal Guru
Feb 9, 2006
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Brampton
Busted seals.

Fix or replace depends on the jack. Some of the newer disposable jacks have a crimped/welded together piston (toss) older ones are threaded together and could be disassembled and rebuilt.
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Jun 12, 2007
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Kevinck wrote: I've have a 3T trolley jack since 2011. i ju..... Is this something that can be fixed or am i looking at getting a new one?
Usually the jack is made by some unknown Chinese manufacturer, so finding the right parts can be difficult. You can sometimes match up the hydraulic cylinder with a common one sold by princess auto and then use the same rebuild kit. Its usually easier just to replace the jack
Deal Guru
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Oct 5, 2008
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my CT bought Michelin jack that's 15 years old does this too.

I wouldn't bother trying to fix it, i'll just get a new one
Deal Addict
Dec 27, 2007
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Edmonton
Swerny wrote:
I wouldn't bother trying to fix it, i'll just get a new one
And this is why we are a throw-away garbage producing society.

I guess I still care for the environment, I would fix it. (Would also be cheaper too)
warming up the earth 1 gas fill-up at a time...
You only live once, get a v8
[OP]
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Jul 15, 2003
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it's a cheap one. Certified brand? i can DIY many things but have no idea where to start with hydraulics and seals.

so i could get another certified 3T jack for $99 on sale at Can tire right now. I need one taht lifts high enough for my subaru outback . Is there a brand < $199 that is FAR more reliable? Or is anything in this price range just as cheap and i might as well get the one on sale?
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tmkf_patryk wrote: And this is why we are a throw-away garbage producing society.

I guess I still care for the environment, I would fix it. (Would also be cheaper too)
seeing how i probably paid $29 for it 15+ years ago, I'd say i got my money's worth.

Repairing it (as outlined above) would likely cost more if i could even find the parts, then there's the cost of the time to do so.

Nice leap on the environment comment.

:facepalm:
Last edited by Swerny on May 2nd, 2019 9:32 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Apr 5, 2013
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hollywood pk
Kevinck wrote: I've have a 3T trolley jack since 2011. i just use it to change tires on my and family (3-5 cars) every spring and fall.

This season i noticed after jacking up the car it will sometimes click/ping and very slowly let the car lower. Like an inch a minute. Twisting the handle tighter doesn't help. it's never done this before.

I assume some seals are wearing out. Is this something that can be fixed or am i looking at getting a new one?
just replace jack...seals (if its not a sealed unit), might no be worth the effort
Deal Guru
Mar 22, 2004
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RFD
My cheap CT Tire Certified jack is doing the same now, in the mean time I'm just using Jack Stands to keep it at the same level. Gotta find a better brand, maybe I'll try Big Red Jacks brand to see if it's better. It's not even that old. Certified brand no longer.
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Apr 5, 2013
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hollywood pk
radeonboy wrote: My cheap CT Tire Certified jack is doing the same now, in the mean time I'm just using Jack Stands to keep it at the same level. Gotta find a better brand, maybe I'll try Big Red Jacks brand to see if it's better. It's not even that old. Certified brand no longer.
I think they are all hit and miss...I have used and still use a bunch of different brands, with no real consistency ..
[OP]
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Jul 15, 2003
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i assumed i needed the 3T just because it lifts high enough for the outback. i wonder if there are some 2T units that would. They're significantly cheaper. i shall go pull out the tape measure before buying anything.
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Aug 10, 2013
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Kevinck wrote: it's a cheap one. Certified brand? i can DIY many things but have no idea where to start with hydraulics and seals.

so i could get another certified 3T jack for $99 on sale at Can tire right now. I need one taht lifts high enough for my subaru outback . Is there a brand < $199 that is FAR more reliable? Or is anything in this price range just as cheap and i might as well get the one on sale?
Torin Big Red from Costco. Excellent jack and well regarded. There is also arcan but not sure the weight specs on it. Arcan is usually low profile aluminum.
https://www.costco.ca/Arcan-3-ton-Profe ... 17470.html
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Deal Guru
Mar 22, 2004
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RFD
This jack any good? Sale starts tomorrow at Part Source. Heard better things about Big Red Jacks
Capturess.JPG
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Apr 5, 2013
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hollywood pk
radeonboy wrote: This jack any good? Sale starts tomorrow at Part Source. Heard better things about Big Red Jacks

Capturess.JPG
like I said ..hit and miss...I have had a few of these as I needed stands too...one lasted about a year, and I had one last me about 15 years
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Mar 22, 2004
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RFD
cardguy wrote: like I said ..hit and miss...I have had a few of these as I needed stands too...one lasted about a year, and I had one last me about 15 years
That's not reassuring. In that case it means by the cheapest one you can get and toss them out and buy again each time it dies?
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Feb 9, 2006
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Brampton
Y'all using jackstands right?

I use a Powerfist 3T Low Prof jack from PA and it's surprisingly well built for a newer PRC junk jack. From what I can see it's easily rebuild-able. It's been 10 years, and the best part is I could always bring it back to PA.

A lot of the 2T ones have a crimped together piston so once it blows you toss it.
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Apr 5, 2013
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hollywood pk
think op is looking for value...that 2 ton will do fine if you are just using it for cars...truth be told...i probably stressed my equipment more than normal
[OP]
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Jul 15, 2003
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Ontario, Canada
tebore wrote: Y'all using jackstands right?
Am i being really unsafe. if i'm just lifting one wheel of the car at a time should i be jackstanding it? It takes less than a minute to raise car, take off the nuts, take off wheel, put on new wheel, put on nuts, lower car. Then torque after it's lowered.
Deal Guru
Feb 9, 2006
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Brampton
Kevinck wrote: Am i being really unsafe. if i'm just lifting one wheel of the car at a time should i be jackstanding it? It takes less than a minute to raise car, take off the nuts, take off wheel, put on new wheel, put on nuts, lower car. Then torque after it's lowered.
You takes your chances. You could have situation like the OP with a jack with blown seals but it's leaking so slowly you never really noticed or pay attention then that one day you go to do a tire swap that seal finally gives way completely and boom car falls down on that corner. Sure you don't get hurt but you damaged your corner.

It takes like 1 extra minute a corner for me to use a jack stand under the control arms. Seriously.

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