Car Ramps vs Jack Stands: Comparison


There are 2 kinds of auto owners – one likes to take their car to a mechanic, and the other loves to do that work all by themselves. So, if you like to do minor repairs and maintenance all by yourself, you need a simple device to hoist the car off the ground. That is the job for both car ramps, and jack stands, to give you a helping hand while you work.

Even though both perform the same work, each has its pros and cons. So, before you decide what to buy, you must know their differences.

Car Ramps

  • Advantages

For DIY mechanics, car ramps have become a huge hit due to its simplicity and the level of safety they offer. In other words, you can say that it is next to impossible to go wrong in using them. The width of the good car ramps is slightly bigger than the wheels of the car. They cost less than jack stands and offer excellent stability.

  • Disadvantages

The biggest disadvantage of ramps is that they can be only used on specific surfaces. The ideal condition for the ramps to work is a flat hard surface. But if you try to use them in loose gravel or wet surfaces, it can slide down. Also, they don’t work on even terrain.

To use the ramp, you require plenty of space. Since you drive onto the ramps, you need space to move the car. For low vehicles, it is hard to get a perfect ramp to lift the vehicle. Even if the car gets lifted, you won’t get enough space to go under the car.

Jack Stands

  • Advantages

Jack stands are quite easy to use in small places because of its compact design. To lift the car with a jack stand, you are not required to move the car. All you need to do is to place the jack at specific lift points on the car’s frame. Then you can jack it up.

For people who have very less space to use, jack stands are the best to use. The flexibility offered by the jack stands is superior to that of the car ramps. For example, you cannot change the car’s tires or rotate them once the car is on the ramps. This is because the wheels of a car support the car’s weight when it is present on the ramp. But with jack stands you can even change the wheels.

  • Disadvantages

This process can consume more of your time because you need to go under the car to check whether the jack stand is in the correct position. Also, you cannot place the jack stand anywhere in the car’s frame. It should get placed only at specific spots.

The bottom line

There is no doubt that both are useful and can give a helping hand when you use it correctly. Whether a car ramp or jack stand is best entirely depends on the type of task you want to do. That is why you will see both of them in a mechanic’s garage.