Safe use of jacks

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Pontoneer, Apr 5, 2010.

  1. Quackers

    Quackers Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Many years ago I was quite used to doing odd jobs on my cars.
    I had an Injection Capri and it was time to change the front pads. I chocked the rear wheels with a brick for each and jacked the front up under the engine cross member - all on the tarmac pathway at the house.
    Sadly it had been warm and the sun was beating down.
    I changed one side and moved over to the other side and placed my feet on the ground either side of the disc to take out the old pads.
    Sadly the foot of the jack had bitten into the heat-softened tarmac of the drive and must have been leaning.
    The car gave a forward lurch and toppled off the jack.
    Fortunately my feet weren't under very far and the disc backing plate just rested on my leg above the ankle - just effectively holding it but not trapping it.
    I've never taken any chances since!
     
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  2. Mob17

    Mob17 Member

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    Quite scary the amount of people that don’t follow the correct procedure
     
  3. DT220

    DT220 New Member

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    This information is a must for anybody wanting to carry out work underneath their car.
     
  4. toolman1954

    toolman1954 Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    As a reminder for those just using a jack and scrabbling under their cars / vans.

    Man killed while working under car in Belfast


    Please always use axle stands, if you have not got one then at least push the wheel and tyre under the body, just in case.
    Please, use ramps if you are pulling a gearbox out, do not just rely on axle stands, when you start wiggling the box to get it out or in, and the car starts swaying, then be afraid, it only needs one axle stand to give way, and its goodnight nurse.

    Steve.
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2018
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  5. Yugguy

    Yugguy Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I use axle stands but I also stick a wheel under sills as well.
     
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  6. renault12ts

    renault12ts MB Club Veteran

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    Sad for two reasons.

    A The average price of houses in that street is about £800k so strange he's doing it himself.

    B The house is only 100 yards from the Fire Station...but they rang for an ambulance.
     
  7. Samuk1

    Samuk1 Active Member

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    what a good post. Thank you again for posting this
     
  8. thesewellguy

    thesewellguy Member

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    I had a E250 cab and used the jack to get the wheel off. The design of the jack is terrible. I was on flags so solid ground but the jack kept sliding on the stone surface. I had to put a piece of wood under the jack to stop it shifting sideways. So your advise is absolutely spot on.
     
  9. brucemillar

    brucemillar MB Club Veteran

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    I jacked up the rear of my Wife's BMW X5 using its own flimsy (read made of toffee) car jack.. This after I had loosened the rear wheel studs on the puncture wheel/tyre. So I now have an X5 on level tarmac, jacked up at the rear with the rear passenger side wheel off the car.

    I then proceeded to pull back on the spare wheel carrier. This is designed to eject the spare wheel from the boot floor wheel well. Being a man who knows about such things. I never bothered to read the book. Why would I want o do that? Well as I pulled backwards on the eject handle, it puled back on the entire car dropping the entire 2.5ton mass of of the jack, which promptly crumpled under the weight. Luckily the one bit of sense I had that day, had seen me put the punctured wheel under the passenger side sill, so the cr did not drop to far. Just far enough to crumple the brake disc back plate and almost cause another rear end accident in my under-crackers.

    100% my fault and a stern lesson in my own stupidity. Read the book, it tells me to remove the spare before attempting to use the spare wheel ejection mechanism.

    We are all idiots at heart. There is some great advice on this thread that I suspect to many of will ignore but escape through luck rather than any good judgement.

    Stay safe folks. Better still stay alive.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2019
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  10. FIA99

    FIA99 New Member

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    Thanks for this info my son is due to take my wheels off to thoroughly clean & was only going to use a jack. I have just bought him 2 x 3 ton ratchet axle stands.. only problem I don’t know where they should go. On my SLC AMG43
     
  11. m80

    m80 Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    The diff can be a reasonable support, but then be aware of any possibity of left / right imbalance.
    If the car has beams runing fore / aft they can be good.
    Wehn lowering onto stands be aware that the car can shift position and cause the atnd to be in an unreliable position, that is not resting square.

    TBH when setting a car up in a safe position on stands I'm not sure it possible to advise, i find it's an on site assessment, continual as the car is raised and more importantly lowered.

    A point on ramps. I used to favour ramps until I drove Larisa's Gr Cherokee up a pair. Not immediate but after only a short time the uprights buckled and the car started to descend.
    I hadn't started the work so drove the car off again.
    There is no rating on the ramps but clearly not man enough for the beast of a Jeep.
     
    Samuk1 likes this.
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