All About Hydraulic Jack Oil


When asked what are the essentials to have in your car, many will certainly mention the fire extinguisher, the spare wheel, the warning triangle, etc. Of course, breakdowns do not prevent and many of them often require the intervention of the tow truck. But the punctured wheel is a completely different case. With a minimum of dexterity, it is indeed possible to deal with a puncture on your own in a few minutes. Provided that the equipment is available of course.

Changing a wheel with minimal effort

Among the essential elements whose presence must be permanent in the vehicle, the jack occupies a position just as important as the spare tire. Without this accessory, the spare tire itself would be completely useless. It is therefore an ideal way to save money by taking care of repairs yourself for which the intervention of the convenience store is not essential.

hydraulic jack oil

In general, jacks are divided into the following four main categories:

  • the mechanical jack,
  • the pneumatic jack
  • the hydraulic floor jacks
  • and finally the hydraulic bottle jacks.

Both of the latter two models are equipped with mobile and fixed supports, respectively, making them more or less effective depending on the type of vehicle. Both models operate on the same principle, however. They are indeed equipped with a jack by means of which the lifting is carried out. This cylinder is operated by a hydraulic system using oil pressure to provide the thrust necessary to lift the vehicle.

Normally the design is done so that the oil in the system is optimally insulated. However, it may be that for some reason the amount of oil is no longer sufficient to allow the appliance to function properly. Thinking about buying another could be an ill-advised decision as it would be enough to add oil to solve the problem.

But which hydraulic jack oil to use to top up

The jack uses a hydraulic system focused on the pressure exerted by the hydraulic jack oil to produce a lifting force. Given this reality, one would be tempted to believe that any of the oils available on the market would do the trick.

In theory, this is not entirely wrong. Almost all “mechanical” oils are indeed capable of operating the device. But the nuance lies in their interaction with the parts with which they are in contact.

Brake oil

Brake oils, for example, are particularly aggressive and designed to operate under very high pressure and temperature. De facto they tend to block the jack pump. In addition, seals and other mechanical parts in contact with the liquid could be subjected to enormous stress, or even be poorly lubricated. One has only to observe the effect of brake oil on a car’s paintwork to understand that the parts in contact with it must be provided for this purpose.

Motor oil

It is quite easy to get your hands on hydraulic oils for optimal machine operation. The brands offering this type of fluid are legion. However, it must at all times be kept in mind that the grade of the fluid must be between 10 and 46.

That said, the higher you go in this interval, the heavier and more viscous the oil. There is therefore a risk that the jack will be more difficult to operate in winter. Conversely, the lower you go, the greater the risk of leakage since the liquid may be too fluid. Experts, therefore, recommend a grade 32 oil for optimal viscosity and fluidity. Otherwise, a not too viscous motor oil could also do the trick depending on the case.

Compressor oil is also a candidate to consider for this mission. It is indeed fairly neutral (more than motor oil) since, for example, it is not doped to lubricate an internal combustion engine.

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