When you own a trailer or RV, you need some essential tools ready to go in your toolbox. One of such tools is a scissor jack, otherwise known as a stabilizer jack. You are probably wondering, “what exactly is a scissor jack?”
A scissor jack or stabilizer jack is a tool that carefully lifts vehicles off the ground. You can use it to stabilize vehicles like trailers and caravans. It is useful when you need to change a flat tire or make other repairs.
We don’t expect you to have a flat tire so often, but we hope you to be prepared. The last thing you want is to be stranded without having the right tools to get you out of a bad situation. Having a scissor jack is helpful in emergencies.
A scissor stabilizer jack is very easy to use. It has a hand crank to get the vehicle off the ground. The electric scissor jack is easier to use. It is automatic, so you don’t need to work a hand crank. Even if you lack mechanical experience, you can still understand how to use the jack.
In terms of storage and cost, scissor jacks are the best. It can easily fit into the trunk of your trailer, and you don’t have to break the bank to acquire one.
If you use your scissor jack correctly, you can preserve the life span. It will also not disappoint you. When you use a scissor jack for its purpose, it will prove to be consistently reliable.
There are two major types of scissor jacks:
Electric scissor jacks are typically used in vehicle service centers, automobile shops, and other related businesses. These jacks lift vehicles entirely off the ground to run extensive repairs, maintenance, and diagnostics.
However, we do not advise you to buy these except you run a vehicle repair shop. These jacks are for more professional vehicles inspections and repairs, and they can also be complex to use. However, it would be best if you left complex RV repairs to the experts.
Manual jacks are the most common type of scissor jacks. The average vehicle operator is familiar with this kind of stabilizer jack. It is very portable and fits easily into the trunk of your caravan or RV – ideally, your manual scissor jack should go everywhere you go. It is important to note that you should ensure it comes with a manual scissor jack if you are buying a used vehicle.
Manual stabilizer jacks are used to lift one corner of a vehicle. You place the jack under a wheel, and it lifts that corner of the RV. It allows you to inspect or work on a wheel that might be damaged or flat. Although you require more complex maintenance, it’s good to have more than one of these jacks around. Many drivers who invest in DIY repairs usually have a couple of these jacks so that they can access the vehicle’s underside. Ensure that the jacks are sturdy and solid. It is crucial to making sure that the trailer remains steady as you run repairs. It also ensures the safety of the person inspecting the vehicle.
Before you buy a scissor stabilizer jack, you have to understand that scissor jacks are made solely to lift vehicles. If you use them for any other purpose, your stabilizer jack will lose its value and become unsafe to use.
So, here are a few factors you should put into consideration before purchasing your scissor jack. These factors are what make a scissor jack worth the price.
The first and most crucial factor to consider when buying a stabilizer jack is the capacity of the jack. Some drivers make the mistake of buying a jack because of how technical the aesthetics are. But the hard truth is, some scissor jacks are relatively useless for their intended use.
You need to ask yourself, “what kind of vehicle am I buying the jack for?” A typical scissor jack weighs around one or two tons. This can conveniently lift one corner of a regular car. But it can not lift heavier vehicles like some trailers. To lift heavier vehicles, you need an electric scissor jack. So you have to weigh the capacity of the jack alongside the size of your camper before making the purchase.
And, size doesn’t always matter. Personally, the best manual jacks I’ve ever used were not the biggest. That’s why it’s always good advice to test your jacks before you buy them. That’s the only way to know for sure, regardless of whatever the salesman tells you.
A scissor jack should be able to hold 3000lbs of weight. If you own a sedan or other relatively small vehicle, you can make do with a 20000 lbs jack. As a trailer owner, the ideal size of your scissor jack should be 40000 lbs.
Another vital thing to take note of is the material of the scissor jack. Some manufacturers make their scissor jacks out of cheap, substandard material. These jacks run out of juice in no time.
A typical scissor jack should be made of heavy-duty steel because it is strong, reliable, and durable. You are using a heavy-duty vehicle, so you need a super-strong jack. The lower support rod of a scissor jack should be made of sheet metal.
A further breakdown of trailer jack parts is steel, sheet rod, and plastic. The non-steel claims are made of plastic. All these materials combined are a trailer jack requirement. Before you get a jack for your vehicle, especially a trailer lift jack, ensure that it is made out of steel. If you get any other material, it will be a complete waste of money. Because with trailer stabilizer jack, heavy-duty is its purpose.
We are placing a lot of emphasis on the material because this is what makes the jack. Without it, there will be no jack. Also, we know the dangers of using a jack made out of substandard materials. The significant threat is temporary or permanent injuries. Imagine using a fake side crank trailer jack. There is no probability of when it will wear out. What if it then wears out when somebody is under the vehicle? You know the outcome.
A typical trailer support jack or stabilizer jack stands at 15-30 inches. As I stated earlier, the lifting capacity of trailer support, the jack should be around 4000lbs. If the jack stands at 15-30 inches, you will be more comfortable working on your vehicle.
I cannot overemphasize this enough but, get a jack that is 15-30 inches tall. Many people out of adventure or just pure ignorance have bought shorter scissor jacks. The outcome was that they couldn’t change their tires because their campers couldn’t go high enough. I am heavy on you getting value for your money, but you can’t do that if you don’t get a trailer wheel jack with the appropriate specifications.
The most outstanding attribute when making a purchase decision is the height of a utility trailer jack. If you want to pull a wheel off and change a flat tire, any jack will do. But, size matters if you’re going to go under the vehicle and perform a few fixes. Although you do not need the load capacity of a jack for trailers, they offer superior and standard life height.
When going for a frame jack based on its height, ensure that its load capacity is suitable for your vehicle. If it is convenient, always go for the highest jack. However, it is essential to note that many high-lift jacks have minimum heights that may not fit under a lowered vehicle. The very high ones are typically expensive but, there’s no harm in getting a costly jack as long as it serves its purpose.
Below is the pricing of scissor jacks for travel trailers and other vehicles.
If you pay close attention to the pricing of trailer jacks for sale, you will see that the more expensive ones have more features. Ideally, anybody will opt for the cheapest option. But, the most affordable option is not ideal for every situation. It can come in handy if you have a flat tire in the middle of a trip. However, it can’t be used for more extensive repairs.
The second price range of $50-$80 is what you can call the “standard.” These scissor jacks are affordable, reliable, and durable. You will find the best trailer jack around this range. So, the trailer scissor jack under this range can be used in emergencies and for extensive repairs. They also have a longer life span compared to the ones of $30.
The third price range of $90 and above is high-end jacks. They are like “luxurious” jacks. Electric jacks fall under this price range. As you know, electric jacks are automatic. This means that you don’t have to put in any amount of effort before it works. That is why it is expensive.
So, we advise that you buy a scissor jack that fits into your budget. There’s no pressure or competition for who has the most expensive jack. As long as it serves its purpose, then there’s nothing to worry about. However, we don’t advise you to buy the jacks that cost $30 if you perform extensive repairs.
A scissor jack is a vital tool for everybody’s toolbox. If you have a scissor jack, travel with it everywhere. So if you get a flat tire, you can change it with or without a mechanic around. Scissor jacks are also affordable. You get value for your money as long as you use it for its purpose.
However, when you are using your scissor jack, keep to the safety precautions listed above. If you don’t know how to use a scissor jack, there’s no shame in asking TOW-MAX professional trailer jack supplier for help. Additionally, if you want to perform extensive repairs, we advise that you seek professional help.