Have you ever been in a situation when you needed to change a tire but didn't have a jack? Perhaps you've seen people using high lift jacks in 4-wheel drive vehicle commercials and wondered what all the fuss is about. In this blog post, we're going to teach you how to use high lift jack safely and effectively. Stay safe and stay on the road!
Jump To Contents
- What Is A High Lift Jack and What Does It Do?
- Steps To Use a High Lift Jack
- Why Use a Hi-Lift and Where to Keep It?
- Mounting the High Lift Jack on Your Jeep
- Maintenance after Mounting the Jack
- Things You Should Be Aware of While Using a High Lift Jack
- The Final Verdict
What Is A High Lift Jack and What Does It Do?
It is basically a multifunctional jack for your four-wheel drive made with a two-piece handle. A high lift jack can pull you out of many circumstances by being able to do many things like lifting, manual winching, spreading, and clamping.
And as the name of the product suggests, its most common use is lifting. And it does an amazing job at doing just that. If you have a large jeep or have recently got the size of your tires changed into bigger ones, you will have to use a high lift jack to get it raised.
The machine has a rated capacity to lift up almost 5000 lbs of mass — which is probably more than most of the trucks out there. But it has been tested to be able to lift up to 7000 lbs. It comes in many lengths, from 3 feet to 5 feet.
Now that we know what a high lift jack is and what its function is, it's time to know how to operate a high lift jack properly and safely. Let’s jump right into it now!
Steps To Use a High Lift Jack
It is a good idea to not jump right into the jacking as soon as you get your hands on the jack. Before doing anything with the jack itself, it is crucial to prepare your jeep and the jack so that no safety rule is broken.
Step 1: Get Your Jeep Ready
If you have a manual transmission, make sure that it is in gear. And if you have an automatic transmission, it should be parked. To be extra safe, put the handbrake on so it does not move in an unintended direction.
And if you are lifting either the front or the back-end of the jeep instead of any of the two sides, make sure that you put some kind of resistance, like a chock on the opposite side.
But if you don’t have a chock with you at that moment, some heavy stones or bricks should do the job. This will ensure your four-wheel drive does not move in the other direction while getting lifted up.
Another thing that should be mentioned is that the bumpers have to be strong and made of steel—on both sides of the vehicle. Steel rick sliders should be used on the sides of the jeep as well. If they’re made of plastic, you cannot use a high lift jump—and attempting to use is bound to go wrong.
Step 2: Set up the Jack
Before doing anything else, you need to get your high lift jack ready to be used. And to do that, set the tool on a safe platform prior to getting it to lift your jeep up. So, you have to have a base where you can set the machine up.
For that, you can use some kind of strong timber plate and get the high lift jack standing there. But if you have some bucks to spend in return for more safety, you can invest in an off-road base.
If the setup is not done properly, the safety of the usage will be heavily compromised. The soil on which you are jacking your jeep up is not always going to be the strongest.
And if it is not, there is a probability of the high lift jack submerging inside the soil because of the weight of the jeep. This can be extremely risky. Therefore, it is imperative that a strong and reliable base is used.
And before using, it is also mandatory to lubricate the jack with some kind of penetrating lubricant. So, if the jack is brand new, it is even more important since the new paint can create a coarse surface.
Step 3: Use the Jack to Lift the Jeep Up
If you are done with reading your jeep and the jack, it is time to jack your jeep off the ground. But before that, make sure of one last thing — and that is, put on some safety gloves. If not handled carefully, these jacks can be lethal, so always be extra careful.
And with that being said, let’s jump right into it.
Set the Reversing Layer
Set the reversing lever in the upright position. This will cause the jack to move up the lifting points allowing the jeep to be raised.
Clip the Bar
Clip the bar out to bring it to the position where you want to lift the jeep from. The nose of the jack should be able to hold the jeep from a certain point from where it will be able to jack the jeep off.
Set the Jack
Set the jack straight from the top to the bottom. This will ensure a safer and more stable jack lessening the risk of it flying off in any other direction due to the weight of the jeep.
Keep your hand in between the vehicle and the jack until there is any tension on the jack. Due to any technical error, if the jack gets slid towards the direction of your vehicle, it might hit the body of the car. Put your hand in between them to resist the jack from harming the jeep.
Now, you can lift the jeep by moving the handle from the bottom to the top position to attain the minimum tension. And every time the jeep gets up by a notch, you will hear the climbing pins click in and click out.
Now, you would want to remove your hand or head from the jack.
Pull It Down
Get both of your hands on the jack to pull it down. In this way, if the jack gets slippery or bounces back for some reason, control the recoil. This way, keep lifting the jeep and keep an ear out for the pins clicking in and out.
Clip the jack’s bar back
After you are done lifting the jeep to the intended height, clip the jack’s bar back in the beam and let it stay set there. Hear the clipping sound while it's getting clipped in.
After you are done doing whatever you needed to do with the jeep in the lifted position, you can set the reversing lever in the downright position to get it down.
Why Use a Hi-Lift and Where to Keep It?
It is not mandatory, but you can set up blocks, ramp or jack stands below the jeep after you have lifted it with the jack. This can reduce the risk of accidents if the jack malfunctions and slides down unexpectedly.
But of course, jack stands are not readily available at all times—and they are not mandatory either. However, it is never too safe, and this could save you from an unwanted situation.
Now that you know how to use your jack to lift off your jeep, you have to know where to keep it. You can keep it in the hood of your jeep if you want to but that might take up a lot of space inside of your jeep.
A good alternative is mounting hi-lift jack on jeep. Not only is that more efficient, but it also looks really stylish as well. But it totally boils down to your preference of how you want to store it.
Mounting the High Lift Jack on Your Jeep
The mounting process is not that complicated at all. There are multiple ways to do it, and different people would prefer it to be done in different positions. But a common and safe position is getting it mounted on the rear.
They usually attach directly to the hinge holes that are pre-existing in your jeep—without you needing to drill any holes in the jeep.
After attaching a mounting bracket first, you will secure the larger mounting bracket—the part that actually holds the jack into place. It will help all your hardware get tightened. After that, you will have your jack set on the mounting bracket.
Maintenance after Mounting the Jack
Firstly, you have to keep it clean and lubricated every now and then if you have the jack mounted on the exterior of your jeep to prevent any kind of rusting. This will disallow your jack or the mounting bracket to get cranky.
Secondly, after traveling every 500 to 600 miles, it is a must to re-torque the hardware that is holding the mounting bracket to your jeep. Due to all the traveling, it is natural for them to get loose and be at the risk of falling off.
And if you are traveling off-road, there will be a lot of vibrations in the hardware making the attachment a lot weaker than prior to the trip. So, getting them to reset is mandatory if you want the mounting bracket and the jack in the safest position.
Things You Should Be Aware of While Using a High Lift Jack
A high lift jack is an extremely useful tool. But it is also a very dangerous tool and can be lethal if not used cautiously. And you have to be really responsible and alert while using the piece of equipment.
1. Clean the Jack
To keep the tool in peak condition, you have to clean the holes and the lever every now and then with an air nozzle. This will ensure the absence of any kind of debris on the tool which can hinder your jacking and cause accidents. And as mentioned before, lube it up before using.
2. Keep Your Hand and Head Away
And while using the jack to lift your jeep up, please make sure to not keep your hand or skin or anything with skin attached in between the handle and the beam.
The handle can get to the beam with all the weight of the jeep if not handled properly. If you have your hand in between them, you will lose it. And keeping your head there can lead to the worst possible scenarios.
3. Use Bolts to Keep the Jack from Dropping
Working under the jeep while the jeep is jacked is not a good idea. At any moment, due to any imbalance, the jack can slide off its place. Or the level might malfunction and start lowering the jeep rapidly. This can and will end in a disaster.
But sometimes you got to do what you got to do—and for those cases, there is a safety measure you can take to lessen the risk of the jeep crushing you. You can place a bolt in the nearest hole to the nose of the jack and set it in place with a ring.
If you do this, even if the jack starts sliding down for some reason, the bolt will be able to keep it from sliding right away, buying you some time to escape. However, you have to make sure the bolt is strong and of high quality.
The Final Verdict
A high lift jack can be a really handy and helpful tool for your jeep that will help you in many situations. It is easy to recommend to any jeep user who is looking for a sustainable multifunction piece of equipment for their jeeps.
It is not necessarily difficult to operate the high lift jack. But prior to using it and while using it, you have to make sure to fulfill quite a few preconditions. You know how to use high lift jack, now do it safely and you will be happy about the money you spent on this.
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