Floor jacks vs bottle jacks?
Are you torn between choosing from these two types of hydraulic jacks?
Well, worry no more as today we’ll try to educate you on how each of them operates. Ultimately, we will help you decide the better of the two for your vehicle or activity.
Ready? Let’s get started…
What is a floor jack?
Simply put, a floor jack is a lifting device that is designed with four wheels on the base. It also has two main parts that are hydraulically operated, a cylinder assembly, and a piston pump. Its wheels make it portable as you can move it around and position it the way you want. Most floor jacks are bulky and solid which can be a disadvantage, especially where space is limited. However, on the other hand, they tend to perform efficiently and fast since they are designed with a long pump handle that makes lifting more effortless and easy.
- Easy to use due to their long piston pump
- Stable and safe
- Have a minimum height which makes them ideal for lifting low profile vehicles
- Too bulky and occupy a lot of space
- Have a low lifting capacity.
What is a bottle jack?
A bottle jack is named after the fact that its size and shape resemble those of a bottle. It is significantly more powerful compared to a floor jack and uses a piston mechanism to lift heavy pieces of machinery including lift forks and tractors. Ironically, it is a narrow-based lifting device that is also lightweight and pretty easy to use. Its small and compact size makes it easier to store than its floor counterpart; this means that it is ideal for emergencies as you can place it somewhere in your car when traveling. Because of their narrow frame and bottle shape, bottle jacks do not offer as much stability as those by floor jacks and might therefore not be the safest to use.
- Most have an extremely high lifting capacity thereby making them the more appropriate choice for lifting very heavy vehicles
- Have a small footprint and occupy minimal storage space
- Most are price friendly
- Their narrow base and design easily cause instability
- Come with retracted height which is not suitable for low based vehicles.
Which jack is good for you?
The jack type that you choose will greatly depend on your needs. For example, floor jacks are more stable since they are large and can therefore distribute the weight of your car over a larger area. This makes it less likely for the car or load to fall off the jack during lifting. However, they tend to be more expensive, albeit lasting longer. Floor jacks are most popular among garage owners.
On the hand, bottle jacks are cheaper and can lift more weight than floor jacks. This makes them ideal for truck drivers and other car owners. They are smaller and lighter meaning they are more portable and easier to store. Because of their small size, they distribute the weight of the vehicle over a smaller area and therefore they are not always safe to be under a vehicle that is lifted by a bottle jack.
In a nutshell, your choice of the best car jack is majorly dependent on the kind of vehicle you are driving, the intended purpose, and portability. Ultimately, ensure that the device suits both your lowering and lifting requirements.