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Tool Talk Discussion Forum

Floor jack frustration

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12-06-2018 20:41:20

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I have this craftsman "professional" 3.5 ton floor jack my dad gave to me years ago for my birthday, it was a the kind that would raise fast until it hit a load. The speed pump stopped working after about a year old, and it's made in China! then it always went up slow, now all these years later this is as high as it will go, the oil was full, I took the rubber plug out of the cylinder, pumped it, took the oil plug out to see if any air was in it, no matter what I do the jack won't work. Now, this jack is only used a few times a year, I'm not running a garage were its used everyday. Any ideas? I watched utube and Google but nothing seems to work, worse case I'm thinking of getting a aluminum one from harbor fraud, I can't lift this steel one from the ground into my trucks.

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Dave F. 54

12-10-2018 03:17:30

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 Re: Floor jack frustration in reply to JayinNY, 12-06-2018 20:41:20  
On the subject of jack repair. Where can I find the little filler plugs. for the oil fill hole. Thanks Dave F.

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CenTex Farmall

12-08-2018 12:29:01

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 Re: Floor jack frustration in reply to JayinNY, 12-06-2018 20:41:20  
I had a "Michelin" rapid pump jack from Sam's that quit earlier this year. I think it was made by Allied.

Anyway, it was like Steve@Advance says, the urethane cup seal in front of the piston had disintegrated. I looked around and couldn't find anything of the right dimensions on the web. Ended up making a little aluminum disc on the lathe that held O-rings to seal ID and OD. Filled it with motor oil. Works like new.

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12-07-2018 13:49:19

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 Re: Floor jack frustration in reply to JayinNY, 12-06-2018 20:41:20  
I found an ancient BlackHawk floor jack on an auction. Had to pay more than I had hoped because someone else wanted it just as bad. I've never regretted that purchase. The jack works like a charm and has never offered to give trouble. I used it just the other day when I put the rear tire chains on my H.

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12-07-2018 20:46:16

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 Re: Floor jack frustration in reply to rustyfarmall, 12-07-2018 13:49:19  
My dad has a porta power, I'm almost sure it is made by Blackhawk, ?? I haven't used it in about 15 years, so I can't remember, I'll have to ask him about it, see if he remembers! Lol, but the name sounds fimular

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The Famous Grouse

12-07-2018 12:29:06

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 Re: Floor jack frustration in reply to JayinNY, 12-06-2018 20:41:20  
Stuff like this that should last forever but breaks drives me crazy, but I can't justify spending time trying to fix stuff like that.

Harbor Freight has a nice selection of jacks at terrific prices. Probably made in the same factory as the so-called "name" brands.
Both the steel and aluminum HF jacks are really nice and for the price, I couldn't justify spending more.


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12-07-2018 09:38:01

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 Re: Floor jack frustration in reply to JayinNY, 12-06-2018 20:41:20  
Hard to say what is wrong with it, but a common problem is a deteriorated urethane piston seal.

With age urethane tends to get crumbly, or sometimes the seal will split.

I have repaired several floor jacks and pallet jacks by simply replacing the seal.

Found out the hard way, if it has a urethane seal, do not replace it with a buna or nitrile seal, always go back with a urethane. Urethane will have a hard, slick plastic appearance, usually brown or blue.

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12-07-2018 05:07:40

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 Re: Floor jack frustration in reply to JayinNY, 12-06-2018 20:41:20  
Take the hydraulic pump completely apart they are as simple as it gets once you get over having to do it... Most of the time you will see the issue then you can determine if you want to spend the money to fix it...

Napa has one that looks like that in the $200 range I just gave two of them away the guy wanted them for parts... The last one like that, that I repaired all it needed was a check ball the one in it had rust pits on it. It still does not work as well as it should but good enoufh to change a tire. At the rime it went out in 2009 I brought a new one from Napa to replace it till I could get around to looking at the old one the new 09 gets all the grunt work...

I have spent stupid money repairing jacks around 2011 spent $350 repairing and having custom parts made for a Norco transmission jack new parts were no longer available...
4 years are so ago I spent around $100 on a 20 ton bottle jack.


A year ago I had to make a part to fix another transmission jack... New parts no longer available... I made a new valve seat out of brass it works great other than a seal around the pump has a little leak its just worn out not much I can do about that...
While I put this repair on hold I brought a new transmission jack from Northern tool in the $350 range I like it work as good and I thing better than any I have used... I did do some major modifications to the head were you set the transmission on to my liking...


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12-07-2018 03:45:58

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 Re: Floor jack frustration in reply to JayinNY, 12-06-2018 20:41:20  
They are seldom worth repairing. Our Shop had more time in them than the cost of a new one. Seals were the only thing that were inexpensive

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JF in MI

12-07-2018 05:11:22

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 Re: Floor jack frustration in reply to dzc3, 12-07-2018 03:45:58  
Not so with the smaller type floor jacks. I had one with a leaking piston seal. Found a seal for it but it was almost as expensive as a new jack. Wound up tossing it.

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12-06-2018 22:36:55

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 Re: Floor jack frustration in reply to JayinNY, 12-06-2018 20:41:20  
I have a 2 ton aluminum and a 3 ton steel one, both from HF in pole barn and same in workshop. There are many times having 2 jacks comes in very handy especially when the aluminum is a low profile. Makes it easy to get under some things. And very easy to put in truck.

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12-06-2018 23:05:18

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 Re: Floor jack frustration in reply to Geo-TH,In, 12-06-2018 22:36:55  
I agree, even my cat said get rid of it! These tools won't fix it ! Lol, I just wish I could fix it, my brother just put in a #12000 lift, so why should I bother with the jack!
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12-06-2018 21:52:40

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 Re: Floor jack frustration in reply to JayinNY, 12-06-2018 20:41:20  
I think i have one steel one left and it's for sale. the rest are aluminum from harbor freight.

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12-06-2018 21:50:31

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 Re: Floor jack frustration in reply to JayinNY, 12-06-2018 20:41:20  
Sounds like there may be a leaky O-ring somewhere. Even a nearly invisible cut or pit in an O-ring can cause such problems. Might be other causes as well....I'm not sure.

In addition, I've had good luck using Bar's Leaks Jack Oil with Stop Leak. It won't stop a bad O-ring from being bad, but it seems to make my jacks work a little more reliably.


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